The declassified Federal Bureau of Investigations annex to the 2017 Intelligence Community Assessment (ICA) on alleged Russian election interference seemingly indicates top FBI leaders, including former Director James Comey, deliberately misled Donald Trump about the discredited Steele dossier at the start of 2017.
Although the dossier was funded by Hillary Clinton’s Presidential campaign and the Democratic National Committee, this information isn’t revealed in the annex. Steele being “desperate Trump not be elected”, as revealed to the Bureau in 2016 by Department of Justice official Bruce Ohr, whose wife Nellie worked for Fusion GPS, the opposition research firm that hired Steele.
The FBI statement in this Jan 2017 ICA Annex that Steele’s reporting “appears” to have been acquired by the media is incredibly dishonest given by this time the FBI itself had terminated Steele — for leaking that reporting to the media! This goes unmentioned, must be an oversight https://t.co/RfnQwcr5os— Undercover Huber (@JohnWHuber) June 11, 2020
Instead, Steele is merely described as “an executive of a private business intelligence firm and former employee of a friendly foreign intelligence service”. As of June 2020, neither Comey nor Deputy Andrew McCabe, fired March 2018 for authorising leaks to The Wall Street Journal and misleading agents who questioned him about it on four separate occasions (three of which were under oath), has offered any explanation for why their knowledge of Steele’s employment by the DNC and Clinton campaign, and surging aversion to Trump, went entirely unmentioned at the time.
Steele losing his position as paid FBI informant due to leaking information from the dossier to the media was also unmentioned in the annex, despite said information later being invoked by the FBI to boost Steele’s credibility in its application for a FISA warrant to spy on Trump campaign aide Carter Page. The Bureau dishonestly suggested a September 2016 Yahoo! News article verified several of Steele’s allegations about Page, without acknowledging the British ex-spy was the source of the allegations in the first place.
Declassified by DNI John Ratcliffe — Annex A to ICA on Russian interference. Says intel community had “only limited corroboration” of Steele dossier. But still attached to ICA, briefed to Obama and Trump, and used to get FISAs on Carter Page: https://t.co/DO5vnNFSbv— Kristina Wong 🇺🇸 (@kristina_wong) June 11, 2020
The annex’s releases also raises questions about whether former CIA Director John Brennan perjured himself under Congressional questioning when he claimed the Steele dossier “wasn’t part of the corpus of intelligence information” the CIA possessed and “was not in any way used as a basis for the Intelligence Community Assessment that was done”.
Brennan is among several former Obama administration officials being investigated by US Attorney John Durham, who’s seeking to establish whether crimes were committed in the multi-agency, multi-year effort to smear Trump as an agent of the Kremlin.