In related news ..... "Fool Nelson" reporting that Joffe has been "air brushed" -- "Soviet Style" -- from the Neustar website's list of Neustar Fellows:


Unclear if he really gone, or whether it is simply because his portion of Neustar was not part of the sale of Neustar that was just completed last week.

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During the mid-2010s, a Russia-based international gambling ring was operating in a suite or apartment in Trump Tower. For such an operation, encrypted computer communications with a bank in Russia makes sense. There would me many continual communications about sporting events, about the calculation of betting odds and about financial transactions.

The FBI investigated that gambling ring. Participants were arrested and indicted. Equipment and documents were seized and studied. Communications were intercepted, recorded and analyzed.

It's likely that the FBI found that the gambling ring in Trump Tower had a computer arrangement with Alfa Bank. It's further likely that the FBI looked into possibilities that this arrangement involved other people, perhaps including the building's owner, Donald Trump.

After all, Trump owned gambling casinos and owned the Miss Universe pageant. Trump was involved in gambling and in international competitions.

Apparently, though, any such FBI curiosity about Trump in relation to that gambling ring turned out to be a dead end.

However, various Trump-hating FBI officials might have thought that there still might be something incriminating to be found by continuing to analyze communications between Trump Tower and Alfa Bank. Someone in the FBI might have tipped off Sussman and'or Joffe to keep looking in that direction.

I think that is how the idea began that Trump might be communicating with Alfa Bank.

However, suppose that Trump indeed with conspiring with Russian Intelligence to defeat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Presidential election. Such a conspiracy is not an international gambling ring. Such a strategic, political conspiracy does not require continual data communications like an international gambling ring requires.

In that regard, looking in 2016 for computer-communication pings between Trump Tower and Alfa Bank in order to incriminate the Trump campaign was just absurd.

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I don't think it's true that the FBI would have dealt with Sussman's information any differently if the FBI had know that Sussman was providing the information on behalf of the Clinton campaign.

The information was very technical -- an analysis of computer communications. No matter what Sussman's motivations were, his information would be given primarily to FBI experts who were capable of understanding the analysis or who at least knew to which non-FBI experts the information should be given for further analysis. Such experts would analyze Sussman's information on its technical merits.

Until such technical analysis was done, the more general analysts -- the Crossfire Hurricane team or the Counterintelligence staff -- could not make much progress with Sussman's information.


Sussman's information must have specified the computer(s) in Trump Tower that seemed to be communicating with Alfa Bank. There must be hundreds of computers inside Trump Tower.

Sussman couldn't say merely that some, unidentified computer in Trump Tower seems to be pinging with some Alfa Bank computers. The issue must have been narrowed to no more than a handful of computers on each side.

I imagine that an FBI expert or contractor who understands the technology could analyze Sussman's information adequately within just a couple days. I have the impression that the FBI decided quickly that Sussman's information was not actionable.


I do understand that even in such a situation, the Clinton campaign nevertheless could report ti the public that the FBI was studying evidence that Trump Tower was communicating by computer with Alfa Bank. Indeed, that is what the Clinton campaign did report to the public.

However, the FBI's analysis of Sussman's information was not really affected by what the FBI technical experts did or did not know about Sussman's motivations.

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Suppose Baker suspected that Sussman was giving the Alfa Bank information on behalf of a client but lying that he was giving it merely as a good citizen.

In that case, couldn't Baker simply write a cover letter mentioning his own suspicion and then forward the information, along with his letter, to the proper FBI office?

It seems to me that Baker easily could have covered his own ass in this situation.

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Priestap resigned in disgrace? I thought he was being hidden in the FBI SF office. If he's out of the Bureau, why haven't we ever seen a picture of him? Is the Man of Mystery, Bill Priestap, in Witness Protection somewhere?

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