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1…………> The Snake Within: US Spy
Thursday, August 23, 2018
Federal Government contractor charged for removing and transmitting classified materials to a News Outlet Reality Winner, 26, of Augusta, Georgia, was sentenced today to five years and three months in prison for removing classified national defense material from a government facility and mailing it to a news outlet.
Winner was arrested by the FBI at her home in Augusta, on June 3, 2017. The parties filed a plea agreement on June 21, in which Winner agreed to plead guilty to the one-count indictment charging her with unlawful retention and transmission of national defense information. The parties agreed that a sentence of imprisonment for 63 months followed by a three-year term of supervised release is the appropriate disposition of the case. The Court accepted the plea agreement at sentencing.
“The defendant schemed to take and disclose classified information she had sworn to protect – and then did so almost as soon as she had the chance,” said Assistant Attorney General Demers.
“Today, she has been held accountable for her crime thanks to the hard work of the Department’s prosecutors and agents. I hope their success will deter others from the similar unlawful action in the future.”
Winner was a contractor assigned to a U.S. government agency facility in Georgia. She had been employed at the facility since on or about Feb. 13, 2017, and held a TOP SECRET//Sensitive Compartmented (SCI) clearance during that time. Before that position, Winner had served in the U.S. Air Force from 2010-2016 and held a TOP SECRET//SCI security clearance. Evidence presented at the change of plea hearing established that on or about May 9, 2017, Winner printed an intelligence report that was classified at the TOP SECRET//SCI level, and she removed it from the facility where she worked. Information may be classified as TOP SECRET if its unauthorized disclosure can reasonably be expected to cause exceptionally grave damage to the national security of the United States.
2…………> Another Knife Attack: Paris
IS jihadist killed two people and seriously injured one in a knife attack in a suburb of Paris, Islamic Sheikdom of France, according to security officials. The attack occurred in the center of Trappes, 30 kilometers west of Paris, early Thursday, where police also killed the attacker, said the Yvelines governorship. According to the French media reports, Daesh claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement released by their propaganda wing Amaq. (AA)
3…………> Impeach Me, Get Poor: Trump
U.S. President Donald Trump warned that any effort to impeach him would have dire economic consequences.
“If I ever got impeached, I think the market would crash. I think everybody would be inferior,” Trump said in an interview with Fox News.
“I don’t know how you can impeach somebody who’s done a great job.” Trump was responding to speculation that Democrats would seek to impeach the president should they re-take the House of Representatives in November’s midterm elections.
The effort gained renewed energy after Trump’s longtime personal lawyer Michael Cohen told a district court judge in New York that he made hush money payments to an adult film actress and a former Playboy model “at the direction” of Trump with the intent to “influence the election.”
Cohen did not name the two women, nor did he directly name Trump, but said he was working “in coordination and at the direction of a candidate for federal office.” The timeline, however, matches up with Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and payments to adult film actress Stormy Daniels and former Playboy Playmate Karen McDougal who allege affairs with Trump.
4…………> A Voice From Beyond: Al Baghdadi
Islamic State claims to have released an audio message of leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the first purported speech in nearly a year from a man that intelligence communities are unsure is still alive.
The IS leader called on Middle East citizens to overthrow leaders Baghdadi’s last message was in September last year, and his whereabouts are unknown, despite multiple reports of his death.
The 55-minute audio statement entitled “Give Glad Tidings to the Patient” was released by the extremist group’s central media arm, al-Furqan Foundation, congratulating militants for recent attacks claimed by IS in Canada and Europe. The recording also offered greetings to Muslims for Eid al-Adha, a feast which is celebrated this week. The audio message was posted with a description claiming that the voice belonged to Baghdadi, who declared himself ruler of all Muslims in 2014 after capturing Iraq’s central northern city Mosul.
5…………> Mueller, Get Lost: Trump Supporters
The fact that two former Trump advisers are facing prison time may have provoked a media firestorm in the nation’s capital, but to the president’s core supporters it’s just a distraction from the excellent work he’s doing.
“This is the sort of stuff that should be in People magazine,” says James Montfort III, when I call him to ask what he makes of the legal turmoil surrounding Paul Manafort and Michael Cohen.
“It’s more important to get North Korea to give up their nuclear arms; it’s more important to make sure Mexico is playing fair on trade – than it is to worry about whether Donald Trump had consensual sex with someone years ago.”
Whether or not President Trump directed Mr. Cohen, his former personal lawyer, to pay porn star Stormy Daniels “hush money” is irrelevant to James from Virginia. He is far more interested in talking up what he says are the president’s considerable achievements in office.
“This is not going to change my loyalty or dedication to him,” he says, arguing that the national conversation should instead focus on issues such as low unemployment and a healthy economy.
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