Kash Patel Sunday: Durham And More
It’s kind of a big Sunday for news—if you count talk as news. I do.
Kashyap Pramod “Kash” Patel appeared with Maria Bartiromo this morning, and it was pretty much one bombshell after another from beginning to end of the 5:30 interview. Just a reminder of who Patel is.
Patel started out his legal career as a federal public defender, then flipped to the prosecutive side in the DoJ National Security Division (NSD). At the same time he was liaison to the Joint Special Operations Command. During that time he was “embedded with a special mission unit at a "secure facility" and received a commendation from the CIA.” In 2017 he became Devin Nunes’ lead investigator as senior counsel for the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI), investigating the Russia Hoax. From there he moved to the National Security Council and wound up as Chief of Staff to acting SecDef Chris Miller. Bottom line: Patel knows NS law inside and out from multiple points of view. He has perspectives that few others have and, most importantly for our purposes, he knows the Russia Hoax inside and out.
Below is a transcript of Patel’s statements to Maria Bartiromo this morning. I’ve paraphrased Maria’s questions, but this is as exact a transcript as I can manage of what Patel had to say about the Russia Hoax and where Durham is headed. I’ll add some of my own remarks, but let’s start with Patel:
MB: When do you think the FBI figured out this was the Clinton Campaign trying to take down Trump?
KP: I think they knew right away, and the documents we put out in the Nunes investigation and the Nunes memo and the HPSCI report on Russian active measures show that the FBI knew right away, because the FISA abuse process, now that declassification is complete. And your viewers can read it, that the FBI knew the evidence was fraudulent, they knew the credibility problems with Christopher Steele and they knew the DNC through Fusion GPS and Perkins Coie were piping in tens of millions of dollars into the machine so that they could get up a FISA warrant into President Trump. I think they knew right away which is why I think the individuals at the FBI need to be held accountable.
MB: Will John Durham reel in any big fish?
KP: I believe so. Let me just put this in perspective. When I was running large scale conspiracy and fraud investigations, they took me three, four, five years to prosecute. John Durham is in only his second year of the most political scandal in US history. So I believe in the next 6 months look out for indictments against the folks like Fusion GPS and Glenn Simpson for helping to perpetuate this fraud. And look out for individuals like Lisa Page and Peter Strzok. I believe they're already helping John Durham and they're cooperating with him to get the bigger fish, like Andy McCabe who is the biggest fraudster next to James Comey. I think you’re gonna see these indictments come out on these individuals at the top. It’s just gonna take a few more months, but I remind your viewers that it takes a little time to work these matters.
MB: No surprise the MSM gave them all jobs.
In a sense this isn’t big news, because we saw the shape of this in Durham’s indictment of Michael Sussmann. In particular the references in the indictment to Fusion GPS (“investigative firm”) and Perkins Coie left no doubt that Durham saw Fusion GPS as key to the actual implementation of the Russia Hoax conspiracy. However, Patel says two things openly that are of bombshell quality.
First, while we knew that the money for the Fusion GPS operation was laundered through Perkins Coie, Patel openly states that the amounts ran to “tens of millions of dollars”. That’s real money in US political campaigns, even in these days. It’s also real money in the world of major law firms, so you can see why Durham has been so focused on Perkins Coie as well as why Perkins Coie is experiencing real difficulty in persuading Durham that they didn’t know what was going on—remember, this money laundering op was almost certainly a violation of campaign finance laws. Who believes nobody at a major law firm noticed the flow of that amount of money through their accounts? Not me and, it seems, not Durham. If Perkins Coie wants to somehow get through this without indictments they’ll need to be very cooperative with Durham.
Fusion GPS, of course, is no more than an organizational euphemism for Glenn Simpson and, most likely, Nellie Ohr. Nellie has, quite likely, been cooperating with regard to Simpson. Simpson, in his turn, will have a lot to offer Durham with regard to the Clinton legal operatives—Sussmann and Elias. Both. This is another reason why I want to wait before jumping to any conclusions about Sussmann cooperating against Elias. Both of these guys are very major players, and Durham won’t be over quick to offer them deals unless he has to.
Second, I was gratified to see Patel confirm my assessment, which I offered quite recently. I stated that, while Page and Strzok may have been big fish within the FBI, in the big scheme of this conspiracy they weren’t truly major players. At the FBI the major players—people who controlled the switches—were: Comey (Director), McCabe (Deputy Director), and James Baker (General Counsel). We’re pretty certain that Baker is cooperating. I doubt that Durham has even sought cooperation from Comey and McCabe. I think they’re major targets—they either go down or they get away with what they did, but their responsibility was too great for them to get a plea deal. Page and Strzok may be able to get some sort of a deal, but in my view they’ll also have to pay a price.
Now, extrapolating a bit from what Patel said …
Regarding the FBI cooperators, both Page and Strzok connect the FBI and DoJ’s NSD at the top levels—and Strzok in particular may have valuable connections to CIA. Clinesmith, Pientka, and Barnett connect in similar ways, as well as to Team Mueller—primarily on an operational level but … you never know what people in those positions may pick up.
There’s another player at the FBI who has probably been cooperating, and that’s Strzok’s boss—and a direct subordinate to McCabe: Bill Priestap. I still believe that Priestap was over his head and wasn’t trusted by the inner circle at the top of the FBI—not with the real nature of the Russia Hoax. However, because of his position he had to be included to some extent and, especially given his note taking propensities, has valuable information to offer Durham. We’ve already seen that in the Sussmann indictment, and previously in the Flynn case.
All that said, don’t forget about the DoJ angle. The FBI didn’t get the FISA done all on its own—they definitely needed some cooperation from DoJ’s NSD and from Sally Yates. My assumption is that Bruce Ohr has been cooperating for lo! these many months. Bruce Ohr is a pivotal figure because he connects DoJ, Fusion GPS—and quite possibly Clinton legal operatives (Sussmann and Elias)—and the FBI. He met with McCabe, Page, and Strzok and was a go between for them to Simpson and Steele at Fusion (as well as his own wife, Nellie). He would have had contacts with Sally Yates and David Laufman at DoJ in an official capacity. Beyond that, in an unofficial and totally improper way, he hooked up Andrew Weissmann and Zainab Ahmad with the FBI’s Strzok, Page—and also, crucially, with Chris Steele. That connection to Weissmann and Ahmad may offer a second and crucially important point of entry to Team Mueller, in addition to the point of entry offered by the FBI cooperators.
All in all, lots of grist for the speculative mill.
Finally, I urge everyone to listen to the full five and a half minute interview linked above. Patel has excellent, trenchant observations to offer on 1) Milley’s political shenanigans, 2) Zhou’s proposal to give dishonorable discharges to Special Forces who refuse the vax (but not Afghan “refugees”), Austin’s pathetic attempt to blame DoS for the Afghan debacle.