Are Russian Hackers an Actual Threat to Democracy?

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Are Russian Hackers an Actual Threat to Democracy?

Are Russ­ian hack­ers an actual threat to democ­racy? Or are US intel­li­gence agen­cies with “deep state” fac­tions opposed to the gov­ern­ment the big­ger threat? And what do the Vault 7 rev­e­la­tions along with oth­ers com­ing out since the change of admin­is­tra­tion tell us about the Democ­rats’ con­stant fin­ger point­ing and fear mongering?

When the Intel­li­gence Com­mu­nity is Weaponized by the Polit­i­cal Pow­ers that Be

Is it unrea­son­able to think that intel­li­gence agen­cies that were cap­tur­ing all meta­data on emails and phone calls wouldn’t spy on a polit­i­cal rival they thought was a threat to their legacy?

It is alleged that the Obama admin­is­tra­tion used spy agen­cies to mon­i­tor and occa­sion­ally go after reporters, in addi­tion to using the Espi­onage Act more than any prior admin­is­tra­tion. The Obama Admin­is­tra­tion hacked reporter Sharyl Attkisson’s com­puter because she was inves­ti­gat­ing Beng­hazi. In 2013, the Obama Admin­is­tra­tion spied on the Asso­ci­ated Press. The FBI labeled one jour­nal­ist, James Rosen, an unin­dicted co-​conspirator in a crim­i­nal case for report­ing on mat­ters and, accord­ing to a 2016 New York Times arti­cle, issued sub­poe­nas to force reporters to reveal their sources and tes­tify in crim­i­nal cases.

And they didn’t just use intel­li­gence agen­cies to mon­i­tor the press. They were also used to spy on Angela Merkel, the head of Ger­many, Israeli Prime Min­is­ter Netanyahu and sev­eral dozen other heads of nations. Nor did Obama limit his spy­ing to our allies. The NSA spied on Con­gress dur­ing the nego­ti­a­tions on the Iran Nuclear Deal.

The Polit­i­cal Left’s Own Lax­ness with National Security

The Office of Per­son­nel Man­age­ment was copied in its entirety (and all sub­se­quent updates) and sent via an “inter­net super­high­way” to China because they didn’t bother to vet IT secu­rity con­trac­tors for for­eign intel­li­gence con­nec­tions. This pro­vided the Chi­nese with detailed per­son­nel files of every­one with a secu­rity clear­ance from mil­i­tary con­trac­tors to gov­ern­ment officials.

In Feb­ru­ary 2017, three Pak­istani broth­ers were dis­cov­ered to have com­pro­mised the com­put­ers of sev­eral House com­mit­tee mem­bers. They were work­ing as IT employ­ees of the DNC and gained access to the com­put­ers of mem­bers of the House Intel­li­gence and For­eign Affairs Com­mit­tees. They fun­neled the data to exter­nal servers while tak­ing money from nations like sources in Iraq.

And that’s aside from Hillary Clin­ton as Sec­re­tary of State hav­ing an unmon­i­tored, unpro­tected email server in her home in vio­la­tion of all IT secu­rity and clas­si­fied data han­dling reg­u­la­tions, which was likely hacked by half a dozen nations. For exam­ple, such servers are sup­posed to be in a clas­si­fied space, sup­ported by peo­ple with appro­pri­ate clear­ance, and have doc­u­mented back­ups to pro­tect the infor­ma­tion from loss in case of a hard drive fail­ure.

Con­clu­sion

The trans­for­ma­tion of U.S. intel­li­gence agen­cies into a sur­veil­lance state is con­cern­ing. While Russ­ian hack­ers are an actual threat, the demo­c­rat party’s con­stant breach of pri­vacy over the last few years was also a threat to democ­racy. And a siz­able shadow gov­ern­ment, a lit­eral fifth col­umn, sit­ting in the intel­li­gence agen­cies already used to vio­lat­ing the law and using the infor­ma­tion they have to attack crit­ics actively work­ing to under­mine the sit­ting Pres­i­dent is the great­est threat to our democ­racy we have faced in generations.

Are Russian hackers an actual threat to democracy? Or are US intelligence agencies with “deep state” factions opposed to the government the bigger threat? And what do the Vault 7 revelations along with others coming out since the change of administration tell us about the Democrats’ constant finger pointing and fear mongering?

When the Intelligence Community is Weaponized by the Political Powers that Be

Is it unreasonable to think that intelligence agencies that were capturing all metadata on emails and phone calls wouldn’t spy on a political rival they thought was a threat to their legacy?

It is alleged that the Obama administration used spy agencies to monitor and occasionally go after reporters, in addition to using the Espionage Act more than any prior administration. The Obama Administration hacked reporter Sharyl Attkisson’s computer because she was investigating Benghazi. In 2013, the Obama Administration spied on the Associated Press. The FBI labeled one journalist, James Rosen, an unindicted co-conspirator in a criminal case for reporting on matters and, according to a 2016 New York Times article, issued subpoenas to force reporters to reveal their sources and testify in criminal cases.

And they didn’t just use intelligence agencies to monitor the press. They were also used to spy on Angela Merkel, the head of Germany, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and several dozen other heads of nations. Nor did Obama limit his spying to our allies. The NSA spied on Congress during the negotiations on the Iran Nuclear Deal.

The Political Left’s Own Laxness with National Security

The Office of Personnel Management was copied in its entirety (and all subsequent updates) and sent via an “internet superhighway” to China because they didn’t bother to vet IT security contractors for foreign intelligence connections. This provided the Chinese with detailed personnel files of everyone with a security clearance from military contractors to government officials.

In February 2017, three Pakistani brothers were discovered to have compromised the computers of several House committee members. They were working as IT employees of the DNC and gained access to the computers of members of the House Intelligence and Foreign Affairs Committees. They funneled the data to external servers while taking money from nations like sources in Iraq.

And that’s aside from Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State having an unmonitored, unprotected email server in her home in violation of all IT security and classified data handling regulations, which was likely hacked by half a dozen nations. For example, such servers are supposed to be in a classified space, supported by people with appropriate clearance, and have documented backups to protect the information from loss in case of a hard drive failure.

Conclusion

The transformation of U.S. intelligence agencies into a surveillance state is concerning. While Russian hackers are an actual threat, the democrat party’s constant breach of privacy over the last few years was also a threat to democracy. And a sizable shadow government, a literal fifth column, sitting in the intelligence agencies already used to violating the law and using the information they have to attack critics actively working to undermine the sitting President is the greatest threat to our democracy we have faced in generations.