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Posts Tagged ‘U.S. intelligence’

The Staggering Collapse of U.S. Intelligence on the Coronavirus | The American Conservative

Posted by M. C. on March 25, 2020

COVERT SAMPLE COLLECTION

The mission of the NCMI is to serve as the lead activity within the Department of Defense (DoD) “for the production of medical intelligence,” and to prepare and coordinate “integrated, all-source intelligence for the DoD and other government and international organizations on foreign health threats and other medical issues to protect U.S. interests worldwide.”

NCMI has access to the resources of the totality of the intelligence community, including intercepted communications, satellite imagery, and sensitive human intelligence, including covert sample collection.

Did the government blow it again? Is this the plan?

Whatever the answer, we aren’t supposed to know the question.

https://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/the-staggering-collapse-of-u-s-intelligence-on-the-coronavirus/

An agency tasked with tracking future bio threats fell down on the job, causing us to wonder what else we don’t know.

The coronavirus pandemic has impacted the United States unlike any other event in recent history, proving to be far more disruptive to American society, and far most damaging to the U.S. economy, than even the events of 9/11.

The U.S. response is something President Trump has likened to a “war,” going so far as to label himself a “wartime President,” leading the U.S. against “the toughest enemy” in a struggle in which he vows “total victory.” If the fight against the coronavirus is a war, then the virus clearly took the U.S. government by surprise. “Certainly we didn’t get an early run on it, Trump noted in a press conference on March 17. “It would’ve been helpful if we knew about it earlier.”

It is the job of the U.S. intelligence community to provide senior U.S. government policy makers, including the president, with advance warning about potential crises. The U.S. taxpayer pays a premium for this service; in 2020, the budget for the National Intelligence Program, which includes all programs, projects and activities of the U.S. intelligence community, was $62.8 billion.

Included in this budget is a small, specialized intelligence unit known as the National Center for Medical Intelligence (NCMI), which operates as part of the Defense Intelligence Agency. The mission of the NCMI is to serve as the lead activity within the Department of Defense (DoD) “for the production of medical intelligence,” and to prepare and coordinate “integrated, all-source intelligence for the DoD and other government and international organizations on foreign health threats and other medical issues to protect U.S. interests worldwide.”

For a small agency, the NCMI packs a large punch in terms of the overall impact of its product. For example, in April 2009—two months prior to when the WHO and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officially declared the global outbreak of H1N1 influenza a pandemic, NCMI published an intelligence product, known as an “Infectious Disease Risk Assessment,” which predicted that a recent outbreak of the Swine Flu (H1N1) would become a pandemic.

The positive work done by the NCMI in relation to the H1N1 outbreak contributed to the creation of the 2012 “National Strategy for Biosurveillance,” designed to help facilitate a full-time institutionalized process for obtaining timely and accurate insight on current and emerging biological risks. President Obama himself noted the critical role played by “accurate and timely information” during the 2009 H1N1 pandemic that enabled decision makers, including himself, to “develop the effective responses that save lives.

“The sooner we can detect and understand a threat,” Obama wrote in the introduction to the first National Strategy for Biosurveillance, “the faster we can take action to protect the American people.”

Providing this early detection of a threat is the mission of the NCMI. When it comes to diseases like H1N1 and the coronavirus, this task falls under the remit of the NCMI’s Infectious Disease Division, whose baseline requirement, according to a former commanding officer, Air Force Col. (Dr.) Anthony M. Rizzo, “is to understand the risk of every type of [endemic] infectious disease in every country.”

“When we think of the word biosurveillance, we think of the kinds of things that the public health community does—collecting cases, taking cultures, deciding which disease is which,” Rizzo said. “But we in the intelligence community are looking way before that to determine [if there are] threats on the horizon.”

The NCMI’s job, Rizzo noted, is predictive in nature—not to explain what is happening, but rather “what we believe is going to happen.” To do this, NCMI has access to the resources of the totality of the intelligence community, including intercepted communications, satellite imagery, and sensitive human intelligence, including covert sample collection.

The coronavirus was clearly part of the NCMI’s remit. And yet its first Infectious Disease Risk Assessment for COVID-19 was issued on January 5, 2020, reporting that 59 people had been taken ill in Wuhan, China. This report was derived not from any sensitive intelligence collection effort or independent biosurveillance activity, but rather from a report issued to the WHO by the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission, dated January 5, 2020.

The next day the CDC warned American citizens to take precautions if traveling to China, followed a day later with the activation of a COVID-19 incident management team within the CDC Emergency Management System. This, however, is not the kind of predictive analysis that U.S. policymakers needed if they were going to get ahead of the coronavirus pandemic. Unlike 2009, when the NCMI provided a full two months heads up about the threat of a Swine Flu pandemic, in 2020 the Trump administration was taking its cues from the WHO, which waited until January 30, 2020 to declare a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC). The NCMI had been relegated to a mere observer, having failed in its mission to provide timely, predictive analysis of pending epidemiological threats.

Almost everything the NCMI knew about the current situation in Wuhan came from the WHO, which had been working very closely with Chinese authorities from the Chinese Center of Disease Control (CCDC) to determine the origin and nature of the coronavirus outbreak. While a great deal of attention has been paid to the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market in the city of Wuhan, which sells live poultry, fish, and several kinds of wild animals to the public, a detailed investigation by the Joint Field Epidemiology Investigation Team, a specialized task force working under the auspices of the Chinese Center for Disease Control (CCDC), found that the COVID-19 epidemic did not originate by animal-to-human transmission in the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market, as originally believed, but rather human-to-human transmission totally unrelated to the operation of the market.

Moreover, by analyzing the characteristic of some 27 genomes of the COVID-19 virus provided by the Chinese and published by the Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data (GSAID), research scientists were able to determine that the “most recent common ancestor” for the coronavirus could be dated back to as early as October 1, 2019.

The importance of this date as it relates to the NCMI is that in mid-October 2019 a delegation of 300 U.S. military athletes arrived in Wuhan to participate in the 2019 Military World games. China has suggested that these personnel might have introduced the coronavirus infection to Wuhan, citing their own research thatsuggests that the virus was introduced into China from elsewhere, and Japanese and Taiwanese studies that point to the U.S. as the likely source of the virus. There is, however, no independent evidence to support these allegations.

The importance of the U.S. military athletes rests in the fact that the NCMI is responsible for conducting threat briefs for all deployments of military personnel world-wide, which meant that a Wuhan-specific Infectious Disease Risk Assessment would have necessarily been prepared in support of this deployment. Infectious Disease Risk Assessments are the bread-and-butter intelligence product produced by the NCMI’s Infectious Disease Division, one in which the totality of the medical intelligence collection and analytical capabilities would be utilized.

The production of a Wuhan-specific Infectious Disease Risk Assessment would have created a window of opportunity for the NCMI to have collected the kind of medical intelligence that could have provided early warning about the existence of the coronavirus. Moreover, these athletes should have been subjected to screening upon return as part of the national biosurveillance program, providing yet another opportunity for early detection of the coronavirus if anyone had been exposed to it during their travel.

The CDC has recently acknowledged, during a hearing of the House Oversight Committee on March 11, that its biosurveillance program has uncovered evidence that Americans who had previously died to what had been originally diagnosed as influenza have, through post-mortem testing, been found to have actually have perished from the coronavirus. Normally, the details obtained from this kind of biosurveillance would be widely shared to better understand the scope and potential spread of the infection, as well as to better pin down the source and timing of the infections.

However, the initial meetings regarding a national-level coronavirus response conducted under the auspices of the Department of Health and Human Services, where intelligence gathered as a result of any such biosurveillance activity would logically be discussed, were all treated as classified events, under orders from the National Security Council. As a result, many people who otherwise would have been present were excluded, and those who did attend these meetings were precluded from discussing what occurred. This lack of transparency on the part of the Trump administration only fuels speculation about the reasons for meetings normally conducted in the open suddenly being classified, as well as precisely what information is being hidden from the public.

The sufficiency and efficacy of the Trump administration’s response to the coronavirus pandemic remains to be seen. As President Trump noted on March 17, however, it would have been helpful to have had advance warning. That was the job of the NCMI, and they failed. This failure may have been a result of complacency, incompetence, or just a byproduct of circumstance. Regardless of the reason, the NCMI needs to learn from this experience, and reexamine the totality of the intelligence cycle—the direction, collection, analysis and feedback loop—associated with its failure to adequately predict the coronavirus pandemic. This reexamination should ensure that the U.S. will not be caught flat-footed the next time around, because there will be a next time around.

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Confirmed: Obama knew about, and was DIRECTING, the “Spygate” coup attempt against Trump from the very beginning – NaturalNews.com

Posted by M. C. on August 26, 2019

Earlier this week during an interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity, Andrew McCarthy, attorney and former federal prosecutor who specialized in national security cases, said “counterintelligence operations” which is what Spygate was, at its core, are “done for the president.”

There is a reason it is called the swamp and EVERYONE is in the muck.

https://www.naturalnews.com/2019-08-23-obama-knew-about-and-was-directing-spygate-coup-attempt-against-trump.html

Confirmed: Obama knew about, and was DIRECTING, the “Spygate” coup attempt against Trump from the very beginning

Image: Confirmed: Obama knew about, and was DIRECTING, the “Spygate” coup attempt against Trump from the very beginning

(Natural News) For nearly two years as information about the coup attempt against President Donald Trump known as “Spygate” dripped out, observers long suspected that an operation of this scope – involving the Justice Department, the FBI, U.S. and foreign intelligence assets – had to have come from the very top.

That is, former President Obama, who was in the Oval Office when Spygate was hatched and began as the 2016 presidential election cycle kicked off, had to have not only known about it but approved it.

Now, the speculation is over: Of course, he did.

Earlier this week during an interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity, Andrew McCarthy, attorney and former federal prosecutor who specialized in national security cases, said “counterintelligence operations” which is what Spygate was, at its core, are “done for the president.”

That means, as The Gateway Pundit notes, they are executed specifically to inform the commander-in-chief.

“What I’m saying is not that the president sits there and directs that there be counter-intelligence investigations. What I’m saying is that unlike criminal investigations, counter intelligence investigations are done for the president,” McCarthy said.

“The only reason to do them is for the president with the information he needs to protect the United States from foreign threats. They’re not like criminal investigations in that regard. So, in principle, the information is for the president. And here we know at various junctures we have actual factual information that this investigation was well known to President Obama,” he added.

Hannity asked if the president knew about the investigation from the outset, wouldn’t he have been updated on its progress?

“Sean, if things were working properly the president should have been alerted about it and informed. It was a very important investigation,” McCarthy added.

“If they actually believed what they were telling the court that it was a possibility that Donald Trump was actually a plant of the Kremlin, it would have been derelict on their part not to keep the president informed,” he added. (Related: What did Obama know about Trump collusion hoax and when did he know it? Everything, and from the beginning.)

Assumptions have been confirmed

This isn’t the first crumb of evidence indicating that Obama was in on Spygate from the outset. In fact, previous information indicates that Obama actually orchestrated the coup attempt.

As The National Sentinel reported in May 2018, former Bush White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said during a Fox News interview that there was no way Obama would not have been kept in the loop.

Investigative reporter Paul Sperry tweeted the information: “BREAKING: Bush press secretary Ari Fleischer said “I guarantee the answer is yes” to whether Obama knew Halper & others were deployed to spy on Trump campaign. Fleischer explained that no FBI director would put informants inside a presidential campaign w/o the prez authorizing it.”

Earlier that same week, President Trump pretty much said the same thing – and he should know, since he now occupies the Oval Office.

“Would he know? I would certainly hope not. But I think it’s going to be pretty obvious after awhile,” POTUS teased in response to a question from a reporter.

There’s more.

As The National Sentinel noted further, then-FBI counterintelligence official Peter Strzok, in a text to his lover, then-FBI lawyer Lisa Page, discussed the preparation of talking points for then-FBI Director James Comey to give to President Obama. Page said it was important to do so because “potus wants to know everything we’re doing.”

Also, since the spying against Team Trump was set up as a counterintelligence operation, Obama would have been updated regularly via the President’s Daily Intelligence Brief.

It’s one thing to have assumed that former President Obama was in on the Spygate scandal from the outset. But it’s another to now have had that assumption verified and confirmed.

The question is, will he ever be held accountable for his role?

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Bookworm Beat 5/23/2018 -- the #Spygate edition and open ...

 

 

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