Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Will Trump Be Foolish Enough To Try and Untie The Middle East's Gordian Knot. Nothing Too Intelligent Emanating From The Intelligence Committee. I

What is going on in our nation's political scene is insane. We elect someone we never thought was electable, then those who did not vote for him cannot accept the fact that there were others who did vote for him.

Then he begins to do what he promised he would and those who did not believe he could be elected are upset that he is keeping his word. So they are now investigating him and one of the opposition's members wants to impeach him after he has been in office only 60 plus days and has been prevented from even getting his personnel approved. This dingbat cites no reasons other than her displeasure.

Meanwhile the head of The FBI seems to have more power to destroy the office of the presidency than Putin who seems to have done a pretty good job in his own right.

Also the former president is doing everything he can to make sure his successor fails because his own policies helped enhance the ability of our enemies to threaten us with nuclear devices and missiles they are developing with money and aid we gave them in the hope we could appease them into behaving.

Stay tuned because the best is yet to come! Possibly a nuclear war which could be likened to the "big bang theory."
These just keep coming:

1) Just read where 4,153,237 people got married last year but shouldn't that be an even number?

2* Today a man knocked on my door and asked for a small donation towards the local swimming pool. I gave him a glass of water.

3* If I had a dollar for every girl that found me unattractive, they would eventually find me attractive.

4* I find it ironic that the colors red, white, and blue stand for freedom until they are flashing behind you.

5* A recent study has found that women who carry a little extra weight, live longer than the men who mention it.

6* Relationships are a lot like algebra. Have you ever looked at your X and wondered Y? 

7* America is a country which produces citizens who will cross the ocean to fight for democracy but won't cross the street to vote.

8* My therapist says I have a preoccupation with vengeance. We'll see about that.

9* You're not fat, you're just... easier to see.
It is no secret Trump has a "uge" ego and having sustained a defeat regarding Obamacare and uncertainty as to the success of  any effort to overhaul our tax code he might be driven to seek  resolving the Palestinian-Israeli thorn.

If this is the case it will complicate Netanyahu's role.

What Trump will come to learn is Abbas is incapable of enforcing anything he negotiates because in order to do a deal he would have to agree to terms that would result in either his assassination or certainly Fatah's overthrow by Hamas.

The Palestinians have dug a hole for themselves over the years by virtue of their intransigence and the West has helped by funding their false claims. 

If the West and America ceased funding Fatah, which allows Abbas and his crowd to live in comfort while doing very little for the Palestinians other than attacking Israel for settlement expansion, which is a blame shift action, something might be accomplished. De-funding would be an attention grabber but it too carries risks.

The entire situation has been allowed to deteriorate because it has been driven by illogic, hypocrisy, fear of offending Palestinians and appeasement.

One current example is Syrian civilians are being slaughtered as Mosul is being rescued.  ISIS terrorist surrogates are using Syrian families as shields. While rescuing forces claim they are doing their best to avoid casualties hundreds of civilians are being killed and Mosul's infrastructure is being destroyed.  The mass media does little by way of reporting these events because they either have no access to the battle area and/or have no interest in reporting them. (See 1 below.)

When Israel is engaged in defending against attacks from Hamas the mass media is all over the story and the hue and cry of alleged atrocities being committed by the IDF is world wide. The U.N and The West immediately respond by demanding Israel stop.

If Trump believes he can resolve the Palestinian issue by catering to Abbas he is a fool.  By relocating our Embassy to Jerusalem, by de-funding Fatah and by insisting Abbas recognize Israel's right to exist, eliminating the teaching of hatred to future generations of Palestinians and taking other common sense measures, Trump might be able to make progress but, as I said earlier, doing so threatens Abbas' survival as well as Fatah's. 

Until Abbas , Fatah, Hamas and the Palestinians are confronted by reality nothing will be accomplished. Thinking otherwise is a fool's game which always ends in more human tragedy and increased financial waste. 

It is a Gordian Knot which Trump would be wise to avoid but I doubt he will because he is hungry for a victory.   (See 1a below.)


The response by an Israeli Minister to Trump's potential efforts of engagement.  You decide. (See 1b below.)
Rep. Nunes may have contributed to his current plight by pursuing his own "leaking" sources his way but there is nothing new about Democrats trying to disrupt investigations.  This is the ploy they frequently use and they were effective when they turned Bhengazi into a circus. Rep. Gowdy is a superb investigator/interrogator and he lost control of that effort. 

Throwing sand in the gears is an effective tool when obfuscation is the ultimate goal.  Rep.Schiff  is shifty.(See 2 and 2a  below.)

1) U.S. Commander Says ‘Fair Chance’ U.S. Had a Role in Iraq Deaths

Militants likely used civilians as human shields in Mosul, says U.S. military commander in Iraq


WASHINGTON—American airstrikes in Mosul likely played some part in the deaths of dozens of civilians earlier this month, the top U.S. military commander in Iraq said Tuesday, adding that militants also likely were using them as hostages and human shields.

“My initial assessment is we probably had a role in these casualties,” said Lt. Gen. Stephen Townsend, speaking with reporters by phone. “There’s a fair chance we did it.”
Local Iraqi officials and residents estimate that the final civilian death toll from the March 17 strikes could reach 200 people, though that number could not be independently verified and Gen. Townsend declined to comment on it, citing an ongoing military investigation into the matter.
Gen. Townsend, the highest-ranking official in the U.S.-led coalition driving the air campaign against Islamic State, spoke with reporters at the Pentagon by telephone primarily to address allegations that American strikes killed civilians in Mosul, as well as other incidents of reported civilian casualties.
As for the March 17 strikes in western Mosul, civilians apparently were herded into one building, which was destroyed following an airstrike on or near the structure. “The Iraqis firmly believe that they [civilians] were gathered there by the enemy,” Gen. Townsend said. “There were people that you really can’t account for in any other way, why they would all be there, unless they were forced there. My initial impression is the enemy had a hand in this.”
During the campaign to retake western Mosul from Islamic State, both locals and Iraqi troops reported that the militants would round up civilians and put them on the first floor of buildings while fighters would take up positions on upper floors and rooftops. The extremists also have been parking car bombs near those houses and buildings to deter airstrikes, which can set off the explosives, locals and Iraqi troops said.
Gen. Townsend pointed out that the types of bombs or missiles typically used by American forces in such situations don’t have the power to level buildings. Because the building in question was destroyed, it indicated other explosives likely were responsible for the destruction.
“The fact that the whole building collapsed actually contradicts our involvement,” Gen. Townsend said. “The munition that we used should not have collapsed an entire building.”
Iraqi civil defense officials said they have recovered 172 bodies from the strike area.
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said Tuesday that investigations are under way and urged patience, saying that accusing Iraqi and U.S.-led coalition forces of being cavalier about civilian casualties only serves to bolster Islamic State’s preferred narrative.
Allegations of civilian casualties come as Iraqi ground troops backed by U.S. air support push ever deeper into the winding, narrow streets of old Mosul, where Islamic State has had years to plant defenses and crowd civilians and munitions into the warren-like buildings bringing intense combat to people’s doorsteps.
“This is the toughest and most brutal close-quarters combat I’ve observed in my 34 years of service,” Gen. Townsend said.
It also comes after slight changes to the rules of engagement, or ROE, regarding airstrikes and a significant uptick in the number of weapons dropped by coalition aircraft.
“There have been some relatively minor adjustments to the ROE since I have been in command, since last August,” Gen. Townsend said, which serves to “ease the application of our combat power.”
He said the process has been changed so that it is more decentralized so commanders can more quickly address problems on the battlefield. An Islamic State car bomb is barreling toward Iraqi troops, for instance, leaves little time to route a strike request through command channels.
“What has not changed is our care, our caution, in our application of the rules of force,” he said.
Gen. Townsend stressed Iraqi forces can’t directly call in airstrikes to coalition aircraft, and that all strikes are vetted before being approved. Iraqis are able to call in airstrikes from their own air forces, he said.
Pentagon statistics show coalition aircraft released more weapons in Iraq and Syria during January and February than in any other two-month period since the campaign against Islamic State began in earnest in 2014. In those two months, more than 7,000 munitions were used.
“The death of innocent civilians in war is a terrible tragedy that weighs heavily on all of us,” Gen. Townsend said. He added: “The best way, though, to put an end to this human suffering is to win in Mosul and win in Raqqa and do it fast.”
1a) Candidly Speaking From Jerusalem
By Isi Leibler

Throughout his election campaign and thereafter, even while fulsomely praising Israel and vowing to treat us as a true ally, U.S. President Donald Trump has repeatedly stated that his former deal making experience would enable him to resolve the intractable Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Some Israelis became euphoric with the defeat of Hillary Clinton. They assumed that with Trump’s commitment to supporting Israel, his downplaying the settlement issue and even questioning the inevitability of a two-state solution, combined with his pro-Israeli advisers and family, they had a green light to act unilaterally. Naftali Bennett, head of Habayit Hayehudi, and radicals from Likud called for massive settlement expansion outside the settlement blocs and immediate annexations.

However, Trump unequivocally requested that Israel not initiate major settlement activity until joint guidelines were agreed upon. He spoke warmly to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, invited him to Washington and made clear that the U.S. intended to facilitate the peace process, reiterating, however, that differences must be determined in direct negotiations between the parties.

This led to pathetic accusations that Trump was following the precedent of former presidents, abandoning his electoral undertakings concerning Israel, treating Abbas as a moderate and returning to a bottomless pit in which nothing will change.

Critics noted that Defense Secretary James Mattis had a long-standing record of opposition to settlement expansion and previously considered linkage to Israel as an obstacle to dealing with the Arab world. Mattis initially selected as his undersecretary for policy Anne Patterson, the Obama administration ambassador to Egypt who promoted ties with the Muslim Brotherhood and was an apologist for the Palestinians. He was subsequently compelled to withdraw her appointment.

Michael Ratney, former U.S. consul general in Jerusalem, and Yael Lempert, who was senior director for Israel, Egypt and the Levant in Barack Obama’s National Security Council, both currently remain at the White House. Lempert accompanied Trump’s special envoy to the Middle East, Jason Greenblatt, on his visit to Israel and the PA.

Sceptics also suggest that the failure to immediately move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem is a result of Arab pressure and the continued influence of the old anti-Israel elements and that Trump is distancing himself from his uninhibitedly pro-Israel profile.

As of now, this pessimism about Trump is unjustified. It fails to factor that for the first time, despite the presence of a sprinkling of officers with records of anti-Israel hostility, the overwhelming majority of Trump’s administration and his intimate advisers share long track records of pro-Israeli activity. They include David Friedman, the new American ambassador to Israel and Jason Greenblatt, Trump’s Middle East envoy — both Orthodox Jews and long-standing supporters of Israel.

Trump is not beholden to any of the failed policies of his predecessors. His objective is to build a genuine U.S.-Israel alliance while exploring opportunities for renewing the peace process. This is in stark contrast to Obama, whose bias and hostility to Netanyahu and Israel encouraged him to diplomatically exonerate the Palestinians and undermine Israel.

To date, the administration has honored its commitment to treat Israel as a special ally. The retention of foreign aid to Israel when other aid programs were drastically cut back and the aggressive U.S. response to the demonization of Israel by U.N. agencies is almost breathtaking for Israelis accustomed to U.S. indifference.
Trump has created channels through which the U.S and Israel can, wherever possible, plan future strategies together.

But in his determination to test the water and seek to renew the peace process, he has stressed that Israel does not have a blank check for unlimited construction in the settlements. He has conveyed his views discretely to avoid assault from the media, so both parties may be able to make compromises without confronting domestic upheavals.

Netanyahu has repeatedly warned the radicals in his government that taking unilateral steps without coordination with the Americans could have disastrous consequences as Trump would almost certainly feel betrayed and could become quite bellicose.

Responsible Israeli leaders must now propose solutions that will enable separation from the Palestinians, elimination of incitement and terror, retention and hopefully annexation of the settlement blocs and ensuring security to guarantee that we do not find Iran or Hamas encroaching on our borders.

Trump is approaching the situation from the grass-roots level rather than starting with an end solution. He is also behaving in stark contrast to Obama, who sought to initiate talks based on acceptance of the indefensible 1949 armistice boundaries as borders and deeming Israel to be an occupier of all territories beyond the Green Line — something that no Israeli government could contemplate. While the Palestinians refused to come to the negotiating table, Obama allowed Israel to be condemned as the obstacle to peace negotiations. Meanwhile, the Palestinians were given carte blanche to intensify their incitement and sanctify terror.

The mission of Trump’s representative, Greenblatt, is to report on the views of both parties. He met leaders in Jerusalem, Ramallah and Amman, stressing to all Trump’s determination to achieve a genuine peace.
He did not make any suggestions to Netanyahu beyond conveying the need to rein in unlimited settlement construction and the need for Israel to liaise with the administration and avoid unilateral initiatives that could create a crisis. For the first-time as a formal U.S. representative, Greenblatt also had an official meeting to ascertain the views of settler representatives. Israeli leaders from Right to Left who met with Greenblatt spoke positively about him.

He also called on the 82-year-old Abbas to halt the incitement and terminate payments to families of imprisoned terrorists. Abbas, as in the past, again pledged his commitment to achieve a peace settlement.
If Israel plays its cards well, the Palestinians will damn themselves. In stark contrast to former Secretary of State John Kerry, who refused to confront the Palestinians and blamed Israel for the breakdown in peace negotiations, ultimately the Palestinians will be required to recognize Israel as a Jewish state and give up on their demand of a “right of return” of 5 to 6 million descendants of Palestinian refugees.

Unless the PA dramatically reverses its core objectives — which is almost inconceivable — for the first time, the United States will clearly expose the intransigency of the Palestinian leaders and demonstrate that their end goal is not a Palestinian state but the elimination of Israel. If Abbas acts true to form, the myth of moderation and Palestinian victimhood will be exposed and the Palestinian leaders will be condemned as terrorists.

At this point, the genuine friendship and support of the United States will enable Israel to move forward and determine its borders. Israel will also be able to initiate further economic activity and cooperation to improve the Palestinian standard of living, which in the long term may lead to a peaceful compromise based on self-interest.

But as Israel emerges from the humiliation of the Obama era, the development of a common front against Iran between Israel and Arab states such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia also obliges Israel to step warily.

In the meantime, we must hold back, limit potential confrontations and strive to reach accommodations with Trump, enabling him to test the waters for his “grand deal” and discover for himself whether there is any way in which to achieve a meaningful modus vivendi with the Palestinians at this stage.

Netanyahu faces a very difficult challenge in his effort to avoid potential confrontations with Trump. He is under enormous pressure to impose limits on settlement construction during the period that Trump engages in his effort to achieve the impossible with the Palestinians. The radical wings of his coalition have the capacity to break up his government over this issue and he will need to walk the tightrope. At the same time, he is aware that the clear majority of Israelis would endorse his approach, and the odds are that they would also re-elect him as prime minister. Who else could replicate his ability to steer the negotiations with Trump and simultaneously maintain a good working relationship with Russia’s President Vladimir Putin?


Israel’s moral claim to land comes from the Bible, not Google, Communications Minister Tzachi Hanegbi said in Washington on Tuesday at an event held in support of placing West Bank settlements within final borders of the Jewish state.

“Defense is important and security is important, but the most important thing is the moral claim of Israel. We are committed to go forward with living in our ancient land, land that was given us not by Google and Wikipedia, but by the Bible,” he said.

The event Hanegbi spoke at was hosted by the Council of Jewish Communities of Judea and Samaria to mark the upcoming 50th anniversary of the Six Day War, titled “Celebrate 50 Years of Rejuvenation in Judea and Samaria.” It was purposely held near the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s annual policy conference to attract those in attendance there.

This was the first time the council held an event in Washington concurrent with the AIPAC conference to specifically target those attendees, as part of its growing focus on soliciting support abroad for the settlements, both in the United States and the European Union.

Housing and Construction Minister Yoav Galant (Kulanu) said, “For us, Judea and Samaria is Israel,” adding that continued control of Area C of the West Bank was existentially necessary for Israel.

“There is no way that Israel can exist” without the Jordan Valley and the mountaintops of Samaria, he said. “Of course, it is difficult to have a strong Jerusalem without [the settlements of] Givat Ze’ev, Ma’aleh Adumim and Gush Etzion and all these places.”

Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely said there were three quick arguments for placing Area C of the West Bank within Israel’s borders, all of which centered around the word “just,” and then mentioned Israel’s victory in the Six Day War.

“It was a just war. It is a just defense. But the most important one, it was based on a just claim.

A just claim of the Jewish people on [the Biblical areas of] Beit El, Shechem, Jerusalem and Hebron,” she said.

“Let me tell you something, if those places are not Jewish, who can tell me that [the modern cities of] Herzliya, Rehovot, Rishon Lezion and Tel Aviv are Jewish,” Hotovely said. “I always say that the occupation is a myth, because we never occupied other people’s land. This is Jewish land [Judea and Samaria]. This should forever be a Jewish land under Israeli law.”

Area C of the West Bank is outside the boundaries of sovereign Israel, but is under IDF military and civilian rule. The Palestinians believe it will part of their future state.

The event came as the Trump Administration is in the midst of attempting to break the three-year deadlock on the peace process between Israelis and Palestinians.
2) Russia Investigation Stalls in House

Lawmakers have called for GOP chairman to step aside

A congressional investigation into alleged Russian government meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election ground to a halt Tuesday over the contested actions of a committee chairman and an attempt by the Justice Department to limit the testimony of a key witness.
Top Democrats, joined Tuesday by a Republican, have called for House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes (R., Calif.) to step aside over his visit last week to the White House to view unspecified intelligence documents and his decision to cancel a hearing.
“Our investigation is stalled,” said Rep. Eric Swalwell, a California Democrat and a member of the committee. “Everything now is stalled. We’re not even having our regularly scheduled meetings.”
The rupture is especially unusual in that the committee has a long tradition of bipartisan cooperation, given the gravity of overseeing the nation’s intelligence community.
Underscoring the fallout, a committee letter inviting Federal Bureau of Investigation Director James Comey to testify was held up because Rep. Adam Schiff of California, the committee’s senior Democrat, withheld his signature in hopes of forcing the committee’s GOP leadership to hold an open hearing with former Obama officials. Mr. Comey doesn’t want to appear before the committee unless the invitation is bipartisan, according to a person familiar with the matter.
Among other signs of discord, the committee didn’t hold its usual Monday meeting. A meeting scheduled for Thursday is canceled as well.
The committee had been scheduled to hold a hearing Tuesday to take testimony from former acting Attorney General Sally Yates, former Central Intelligence Agency Director John Brennan and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.
Mr. Nunes canceled that hearing following his trip last week to meet an unidentified source at a secure facility on the White House grounds, where he said he learned that U.S. intelligence agencies had collected incidental information about President Donald Trump’s team during the transition period.
On Friday, the Justice Department informed Ms. Yates that her contacts with the White House likely are covered by the presidential communications privilege, which it said the president controls, according to people familiar with the matter. Ms. Yates served as deputy attorney general under Mr. Trump’s Democratic predecessor and briefly as acting attorney general under Mr. Trump, a Republican.
A Justice Department lawyer told Ms. Yates that she would need to consult the White House before disclosing any details of her conversations with it, the people said.
That same day, last Friday, a lawyer for Ms. Yates told the White House she planned to testify about those communications and argued that any claim of privilege had been automatically waived as a result of the White House’s public comments about those conversations, according to people familiar with the correspondence.
That same day, Mr. Nunes canceled the hearing.
The back-and-forth between the Justice Department and Ms. Yates about her planned testimony was reported by the Washington Post on Tuesday.
The White House suggested the fact that Ms. Yates didn’t testify had more to do with the canceled committee hearing.
Sean Spicer, the president’s spokesman, said Ms. Yates’s lawyer had written in his letter to the White House that Ms. Yates would assume the White House wasn’t asserting executive privilege if no response was received from the White House within three days. The White House didn’t respond, Mr. Spicer said, giving its tacit consent for her testimony.
“We encouraged them to go ahead,” Mr. Spicer said. “To suggest in any way, shape or form that we stood in the way of that is 100% false.”
The White House fired Ms. Yates in January after she told government lawyers not to defend Mr. Trump’s first executive order suspending immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries.
Ms. Yates had been expected to discuss what she had told the White House about Mike Flynn, who resigned as Mr. Trump’s national security adviser in February under pressure over conflicting statements about his contact with the Russian ambassador to the U.S.
Through a spokesman, Mr. Nunes denied coordinating with the White House about Ms. Yates’s testimony and said the committee was committed to having her appear.
“Neither Chairman Nunes nor any Intelligence Committee staff members had any communication with the White House whatsoever about Sally Yates testifying to the committee,” said Jack Langer, a spokesman for the committee chairman. “The only person the committee has spoken to about her appearing before the committee has been her lawyer. The committee asked her to testify on our own accord and we still intend to have her speak to us.”
Mr. Schiff said he didn’t know why the hearing had been canceled. “Whether the White House’s desire to avoid a public claim of executive privilege to keep her from providing the full truth on what happened contributed to the decision to cancel today’s hearing, we do not know,” Mr. Schiff said in a statement.
He added: “We would urge that the open hearing be rescheduled without further delay and that Ms. Yates be permitted to testify freely and openly.”
Last week, Mr. Nunes told the media, and then the president in a White House meeting, that U.S. intelligence agencies had intercepted information about people in the Trump transition team before he briefed other members of the committee. Then on Monday came the disclosure that he had reviewed sensitive information from a source on White House grounds last week, a day before his meeting with Mr. Trump at the White House.
Democrats began demanding Mr. Nunes recuse himself. The first House Republican joined that call Tuesday. Rep. Walter Jones (R., N.C.) also called for creation of an independent commission to investigate.
Two Senate Republicans, John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, also have raised questions about Mr. Nunes’s actions as chairman.
Mr. Nunes has declined to withdraw from his committee’s investigation. House Speaker Paul Ryan (R., Wis.), asked at a news conference Tuesday whether Mr. Nunes should recuse himself and whether he knows the source of Mr. Nunes’s information about Mr. Trump’s transition team, said: “No and no.”
Write to Byron Tau at and Aruna Viswanatha at

2a) Lack of House Intelligence

If Devin Nunes has to resign, then so should Adam Schiff.

Devin Nunes is refusing Democratic calls to resign as chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, and rightly so. If Mr. Nunes is going to step down for speaking out of school to the White House about his probe, then ranking Democrat Adam Schiff should also resign for spreading innuendo without evidence across the airwaves.

Mr. Nunes blundered when he informed the White House about some information he received without first telling committee Democrats. The intelligence panel is one of the least partisan on Capitol Hill, and Mr. Nunes handed Democrats an opening to cast doubt on his fairness. He should protect his own credibility more than he protects the White House, which has nothing to worry about if President Trump’s claims about his lack of Russian ties are true.
But the main reason Democrats are mad at Mr. Nunes is because he’s raising an issue they’d rather avoid—to wit, that he’s seen documents showing that U.S. intelligence agencies may have “incidentally” collected information about people connected to Mr. Trump.
We know from leaks to the media that one of those people was former national security adviser Michael Flynn, who lost his job over the news. These columns have been asking since the Flynn news broke whether there was a proper FISA court order for this eavesdropping, or why if it was incidental was it spread widely enough to leak? Such information is supposed to be “minimized” and not widely shared so innocent Americans are protected if they happen to speak to a foreigner who is surveilled.
Mr. Trump was wrong to claim that Mr. Nunes has vindicated his famous tweet of three weeks ago that President Obama had wiretapped him in Trump Tower. Mr. Nunes has said he’s seen no evidence of that. But the issue of whether and why the Obama Administration was listening to Trump officials is important for the public to know. The U.S. government must have a very good reason for eavesdropping on political opponents, and civil libertarians would be shouting if Mr. Flynn were a Democrat.
Which brings us to Mr. Schiff, who while posing as a truth-teller is becoming more partisan by the hour. The California Democrat started out telling everyone that there is “circumstantial evidence of collusion” between Mr. Trump’s presidential campaign and Russia. He later escalated to claiming “there is more than circumstantial evidence now,” without providing any such evidence. If Mr. Schiff is so confident of the Russia-Trump connection, why not wait for the evidence to come out?
Meanwhile, Mr. Schiff evinces no interest in discussing, or even investigating, what happened to Mr. Flynn and why. Maybe he’s shouting so much about Mr. Nunes because he doesn’t want to know the answers to the questions the Republican is asking.
One question to ask about the eavesdropping on Mr. Flynn is whether there was “reverse targeting”—that is, whether a FISA order was put on the Russian ambassador Mr. Flynn spoke with in order to listen to Trump officials. We ask because reverse targeting was a big concern among Democrats like Senator Ron Wyden when surveillance legislation was last debated.
There’s plenty of partisanship on both sides of House Intelligence, and we wish they behaved better. But the larger goal is to find out, and tell the public, what happened, and that’s what they ought to focus on.

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