“You have a presidential candidate who is, in fact, asking the Russians to engage in American politics. I think that’s beyond the pale… He is truly not qualified to be president of the United States.”
Former CIA Director Leon Panetta
July 27 2016 — On Wednesday, Donald Trump has been calling on Russia to hack Hillary Clinton’s emails. Follow us on Twitter: @INTEL_TODAY
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UPDATE (July 27 2018) — An indictment from the special counsel Robert Mueller’s office alleges that Russian intelligence officers tried to hack email accounts affiliated with Hillary Clinton’s campaign on July 27 2016!
“For example, on or about July 27, 2016, the Conspirators attempted after hours to spearphish for the first time email accounts at a domain hosted by a third-party provider and used by Clinton’s personal office,” the indictment says.
“At or around the same time, they also targeted seventy-six email addresses at the domain for the Clinton Campaign.”
The indictment says July 27 was the first time they went after email accounts and domains belonging to Clinton’s office. END of UPDATE
Trump’s comment was about the more than 30,000 emails that were deleted from Clinton’s private server while she served as Secretary of State.
“Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 emails that are missing.
I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press,” Trump said.
Donald Trump on Hillary Clinton Emails
Former CIA chief Leon Panetta has told CNN’s Christiane Amanpour that “Trump’s actions call his loyalty to the U.S. into question.” Conspiracy?
Amampour tweeted the following: “Fmr. CIA Dir. Panetta on Trump call for Russia HRC hacking: Trump’s loyalty to U.S. in question & possible conspiracy with a foreign power”
“This just is beyond my own understanding of the responsibilities that candidates have to be loyal to their country and to their country alone, not to reach out to somebody like Putin and Russia, and try to engage them in an effort to try to, in effect, conduct a conspiracy against another party,” Panetta said.
“You’ve got now a presidential candidate who is in fact asking the Russians to engage in American politics and I just think that’s beyond the pale. I have a lot of concerns of his qualities of leadership or lack thereof. That kind of statement only reflects the fact that he truly is not qualified to be president of the United States.”
Commentators and close associates believe that Trump may have made a serious blunder that will cost him greatly. Perhaps. Then again, he may be preparing the stage for an October surprise?
UPDATE (July 27 2017) — Shortly before she was sworn in as secretary of state in 2009, Hillary Clinton set up an email server at her home in Chappaqua, New York. She then relied on this server, home to the email address firstname.lastname@example.org, for all her electronic correspondence – both work-related and personal – during her four years in office.
It was 30,000 of the emails sent here that Mr Trump was encouraging hackers to find.
A FBI investigation concluded that Mrs Clinton should not face charges, but said she and her aides had been “extremely careless” in their handling of classified information.
The US Justice Department has declined to release the documents on grounds that such disclosure could “interfere with enforcement proceedings”.
In a filing to a federal court in Washington DC, the DoJ states that “because of the existence of an active, ongoing investigation, the FBI anticipates that it will … withhold all records”.
The FBI’s refusal to disclose documents relating to Trump’s Russia hacking invitation was made in response to a freedom of information lawsuit lodged by Ryan Shapiro of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard and the journalist Jason Leopold.
They jointly submitted a Foia request last August requesting from the FBI “disclosure of any and all records, including investigative records, mentioning or referring to Donald Trump’s statement on 27 July 2016”.
The FBI initially declined either to confirm or deny the existence of any documents on this matter, but later reversed its position, in effect admitting that records relating to Trump’s provocative remark were in the agency’s possession.
A joint status report, prepared by counsel for both the defendants and the plaintiffs in the freedom of information case, said:
“Although initial searches began only as recently as the week of March 20, 2017, and definitive information is not yet available, the FBI expects that it possesses at least some records that are responsive to Plaintiff’s Russia Request and subject to FOIA.”
“The DoJ/FBI’s latest filing makes plain that Donald Trump’s campaign trail call for Russian hacking of Secretary Clinton’s emails is of investigative interest to the FBI,” Professor Shapiro concluded. — END of UPDATE
Leon Panetta called Trump ‘not qualified’ And now? [Update November 10 2016]
Former CIA Director Leon Panetta speaks with Christiane Amanpour about the prospects for Donald Trump’s presidency.
UPDATE — FBI refuses to disclose documents on Trump’s call to Russia to hack Clinton — The Guardian – May 11 2017
Former CIA Director Leon Panetta: Trump is not qualified to be POTUS
One Year Ago — Former CIA Director Leon Panetta: “Trump is not qualified to be POTUS”
Two Years Ago — Former CIA Director Leon Panetta: “Trump is not qualified to be POTUS”