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Iran Deal Echo Chamber attacks Politico report on Hezbollah drug-running bombshell

Iran Deal Echo Chamber attacks Politico report on Hezbollah drug-running bombshell

WaPo finally covers the story and finds: “The pushback doesn’t cite any factual errors involving the story’s claims about shut-down investigations and the like”

Politico Magazine published an extensive investigative report by Josh Meyer regarding Obama administration interference in law enforcement efforts to take down the Hezbollah international criminal network in order to appease Iran during the nuclear deal negotations.

We covered the Politico investigation in our post, Obama allowed Hezbollah cocaine running into U.S. in quest for Iran nuke deal. See that post for the details, but here’s the top line from Meyer:

In its determination to secure a nuclear deal with Iran, the Obama administration derailed an ambitious law enforcement campaign targeting drug trafficking by the Iranian-backed terrorist group Hezbollah, even as it was funneling cocaine into the United States, according to a POLITICO investigation.

The Politico report reverberated all over conservative media, but as I noted, there was Mainstream media silence on Politico report that Obama allowed Hezbollah drug running to appease Iran:

So far there is near silence from the mainstream media about the blockbuster Politico Magazine investigative report on how the Obama administration from the top down interfered with U.S. law enforcement efforts to take down Hezbollah’s drug running of cocaine into the U.S. in order to facilitate the Iran nuclear deal.

I cannot find any mentions of the Politico story in any of the major newspapers or networks (except for Fox News). The same people who endlessly repeat shoddy reporting by other mainstream outlets when it comes to anti-Trump conspiracy theories, don’t feel the need to report on the Politico story. My hunch is that they are devoting resources to try to question the Politico story.

That mainstream media silence has mostly continued, though there are some cracks in the cone of silence.

That silence has given the Obama Iran deal boosters, the so-called Iran Deal Echo Chamber put together by Obama aide Ben Rhodes, time to figure out how to attack the story.

The attack has been to call it a right wing conspiracy. At Politico. Seriously.

Ben Rhodes tweeted about the right-wing conspiracy:

So did Joe Cirincione of the Ploughshares Fund, which was instrumental in building the “echo chamber” for the Iran deal, called it a “neo con hit piece”:

Tommy Vietor, another Obama message shaper and current podcast star, created the fictional defense that Meyer relied on just two sources, a narrative that has been spread by Obama defenders.

In fact, Meyer responded, he had dozens of sources:

Meyer went on Fox News to defend his investigation, a place he says he normally doesn’t appear:

Shannon Bream pointed out that former National Security Counsel spokesman Tommy Vietor said Meyer’s sources are “very flawed” and former State Department spokesperson Marie Harf claimed the narrative in Meyer’s report is “just false.”

“There’s no evidence in this story to back up their allegations,” Harf said on “Fox & Friends” on Tuesday. “They quote a couple of low-level, ideological sources who clearly don’t like the Iran deal.”

Meyer said he’s a fan of Harf, but he said her claim that the people he spoke to were “low-level” is “sort of ridiculous.”

“These were the people that led this task force. They were not ideologues. They are not flawed. I don’t know what she’s talking about,” Meyer said.

He added that he spoke to “many, many dozens” of people and read thousands of documents to see if the allegations held up in the light of day.

“So this is not a story in 14,000 words where I was just taking some spin from some people,” Meyer said. “I spent months of meticulous reporting to document what was happening, talking to people outside of the administration. So I challenge people to let me know what the specifics are that they think aren’t true.”

The Washington Post finally got around to covering the story, via its media reporter, Eric Wemple. The headline of Wemple’s article was that Obama officials dispute Meyer’s reporting, but Wemple noted that they had not been able to document any actual inaccuracies:

 The pushback doesn’t cite any factual errors involving the story’s claims about shut-down investigations and the like.

Wemple quotes a Politico defense of the Meyer reporting:

Josh Meyer’s groundbreaking investigation was rigorously reported, deeply sourced, thoroughly vetted and is of significant public interest given the national security implications. POLITICO is proud of this story and believe it captures the complexity of the decision making by the Obama administration in pursuit of a deal with Iran that it viewed as a major foreign policy achievement. It’s hardly surprising that Obama loyalists have pushed back on the overall thrust of the article.

In his months of reporting the piece, Josh conducted an exhaustive review of government documents and court records and spoke with dozens of key participants at all levels of government. It’s worth noting that the principals mentioned in the piece were given the opportunity to comment and when they declined, POLITICO interviewed numerous sources who could speak on their behalf.

Also, Josh responded himself on television [Tuesday], specifically responding to the false claim that the article is based on uncorroborated complaints from disgruntled low-level officials. “I also talked to many, many dozens of other people to get a sort of ground truth and see what their allegations were when held up to the light of day. So this is not a story in 14,000 words where I was just taking spin from some people,” he said.

Given that Meyer’s reporting has held up to scrutiny so far, that the pushback is from the Iran Deal Echo Chamber, and that no factual errors have been pointed out, you’d think this would be receiving wider coverage in the major newspapers. But it’s not. Nor is Meyer being invited on TV much to talk about his report, something he lamented on Twitter:

But the story is not going away. There will be congressional investigations, including focused on Rhodes, as the Free Beacon reports:

Lawmakers are launching an investigation into Obama-era efforts to thwart a longstanding U.S. investigation into the Iranian-backed terror group Hezbollah, according to multiple congressional officials and insiders who spoke to the Washington Free Beacon….

Rep. Ron DeSantis (R., Fla.), a member of the House Oversight Committee and chair of its National Security Subcommittee, told the Washington Free Beacon on Wednesday that he and other top lawmakers are examining evidence that could implicate top former Obama officials, including National Security Council official Ben Rhodes, the architect of the former administration’s self-described pro-Iran “echo chamber.” …

Lawmakers will be paying particular attention to whether Rhodes or other senior officials accused of misleading Congress and the American public about the Iran deal played a role in thwarting the Hezbollah investigation.

“Congress will be investigating this thoroughly and my National Security subcommittee will be particularly interested in how such a decision came about and whether it was driven by key Iran deal architects such as Ben Rhodes,” DeSantis said.

There already has been a demand that DOJ turn over documents, as Politico reports:

Congressional Republicans on Thursday demanded action and sought more information following a POLITICO report that the Obama administration derailed a law enforcement campaign against drug trafficking by the terrorist group Hezbollah as former President Barack Obama sought to secure a nuclear agreement with Iran….

Reps. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) and Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), both members of the House oversight committee, called for the Department of Justice to hand over by Jan. 8 all documents related to interference with law enforcement efforts against Hezbollah. They also asked Attorney General Jeff Sessions to brief the oversight panel’s staff by Jan. 12.


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Something tells me, the more they yell, the more I should look…

You know, as much as I’d like to see the Clintons and Obama brought up on charges, I’d be soooo satisfied to see Rhodes doing a perp walk…

regulus arcturus | December 21, 2017 at 9:45 pm

Whoever, owing allegiance to the United States, levies war against them or adheres to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort within the United States or elsewhere, is guilty of treason and shall suffer death, or shall be imprisoned not less than five years and fined under this title but not less than $10,000; and shall be incapable of holding any office under the United States.

    Rhodes should swing from the neck until dead.

    The key word there is “adheres”. It’s not treason unless it’s motivated by support for the enemy. In this case the damage was just as bad, but that wasn’t the motive so it’s not treason. That doesn’t mean they should be allowed to get away with it. It’s likely other laws were broken, probably including ones even the president can’t waive.

      regulus arcturus in reply to Milhouse. | December 22, 2017 at 12:47 am

      So you’ve not heard of contractual commitments.

      This explains your previous clueless comments.

      Merry Christmas idiot.

      inspectorudy in reply to Milhouse. | December 22, 2017 at 12:48 am

      How do you know what obama’s motivation was? Did he make friends with all of the muslim countries that had been traditionally our enemies? Did he telegraph every move our military was about to make? Did he pull our troops out of Iraq at the worst possible moment? Did he have more “Flexibility” after the election towards Russia? Did he have Susan Powers abstain from the condemnation of Isreal by the feckless UN instead of voting no? Did he bow to a Saudi king? Did he praise the traitor Berghdal? Did he decimate the military? Did he subvert the Constitution many times? How can you be so sure that you know his motivation?

        Milhouse in reply to inspectorudy. | December 22, 2017 at 8:13 am

        If we don’t know his motivation then we can’t charge him with treason. The motivation is the key element in the crime, and must be proven beyond reasonable doubt. No, it doesn’t require mind-reading. Juries are asked all the time to determine people’s motives; but they must have enough evidence before them from which it is possible to conclude beyond reasonable doubt that the motive was what the prosecution alleges. If there’s not enough to exclude other motives beyond reasonable doubt they must acquit.

      tom_swift in reply to Milhouse. | December 22, 2017 at 5:28 am

      It’s not treason unless it’s motivated by support for the enemy.

      I’m afraid you’re making up your own “fun facts” again. Treason is an action, not a motivation. In perhaps America’s most famous treason trial, involving ex-Vice President Aaron Burr’s conspiracy with agents of the Spanish Crown, nobody was silly enough to postulate that Burr was interested in advancing the interests of Spain. He was, as always, motivated solely by the interests of Aaron Burr.

      (Incidentally, Burr was acquitted; not because he wasn’t obviously guilty as hell, but because the government couldn’t come up with the requisite witnesses. There were several, but they were all traitors themselves—not the sort of material with which to convince a jury.)

        oldgoat36 in reply to tom_swift. | December 22, 2017 at 8:11 am

        It seems motivation is the defining issue with Democrats who break the laws of this land, and gets them off the hook. Hillary was not charged with her emails and handling of secret information because she didn’t have motive in giving away US secrets through a hackable server, even though the case was clearly laid out by Comey – while he excused her actions due in part to lack of motive. Anyone else who was lesser than the Queen of the Clinton Crime family would have been charged and likely found guilty.

          Milhouse in reply to oldgoat36. | December 22, 2017 at 8:22 am

          Comey claimed to have searched for even one case where the DOJ had charged anyone under the “gross negligence” standard, and not to have been able to find one. Maybe he was lying, but nobody arguing against him seems to be able to cite such a case themselves. Can you?

          It’s reasonable to argue that he shouldn’t have been afraid to urge that DOJ enforce the law as written, starting with her. But it’s not reasonable to allege that anyone else in her place would have been charged unless you can cite one case where it happened.

          ConradCA in reply to oldgoat36. | December 22, 2017 at 1:21 pm

          What about that sailor who took pictures inside a sub so he could show his family and friends where he worked? No criminal intent yet he was prosecuted and sent to prison.

          Hillary mishandled classified information in her attempt to conceal her selling of the favors of her office.

          Milhouse in reply to oldgoat36. | December 22, 2017 at 3:53 pm

          Irrelevant. I asked for a case prosecuted by the DOJ. Evidently you can’t find one either. Therefore Comey was correct. Whether the DOJ policy is right or wrong, it seems to be a fact. It has never charged anyone else in such circumstances, and therefore if you or I acted as Clinton did we would not be charged either.

        Milhouse in reply to tom_swift. | December 22, 2017 at 8:15 am

        No, tom_swift, I am giving you the undisputed law. You are making things up. Do some research and you will find that the law is exactly as I’ve given it. No, I’m not going to give you the case citations, you should be able to find them easily enough if you bother looking.

          gmac124 in reply to Milhouse. | December 22, 2017 at 4:16 pm

          “Comey claimed to have searched for even one case where the DOJ had charged anyone under the “gross negligence” standard, and not to have been able to find one. Maybe he was lying, but nobody arguing against him seems to be able to cite such a case themselves. Can you?”

          General David Petraeus.

          Milhouse in reply to Milhouse. | December 24, 2017 at 1:23 pm

          Petraeus was not charged for gross negligence. He was charged for knowingly and deliberately mishandling classified information, and giving it to someone not authorized to have it.

          In looking back at our investigations into mishandling or removal of classified information, we cannot find a case that would support bringing criminal charges on these facts. All the cases prosecuted involved some combination of: clearly intentional and willful mishandling of classified information; or vast quantities of materials exposed in such a way as to support an inference of intentional misconduct; or indications of disloyalty to the United States; or efforts to obstruct justice. We do not see those things here.

          Cite a case where DOJ charged in the absence of any of those factors, but merely for gross negligence.

      MarkS in reply to Milhouse. | December 22, 2017 at 8:31 am

      So you’re promoting “Hillary didn’t intend” defense?

        Milhouse in reply to MarkS. | December 22, 2017 at 1:00 pm

        There are many crimes in which intent is an element; if it’s not there, there’s no crime. Treason is one of them; the constitution is very clear on this. But it’s far from the only one. Perjury is another; there must be intent to mislead, and the lie must be material. If either one of them is missing there’s no crime.

4th armored div | December 21, 2017 at 9:48 pm

“In a May 2016 New York Times profile about him, Rhodes’ colleagues in the White House said he spent two to three hours a day with Obama, and Rhodes himself said, “I don’t know anymore where I begin and Obama ends.” from wiki on Ben Rhodes –
an unelected moron who needs to be broth before the bar of justice and found guilty to a long supermax term – to keep the USA safe from this Soros psycho!

    4th armored div in reply to 4th armored div. | December 21, 2017 at 9:55 pm

    broth before//// brought before /// really need a re-edit feature, PLEASE for those of us with bad eyesight and fat fingers – also allowing pix links


Admitting that Harf’s complaint that the investigators were “low-level ideologues” is accurate, if there was such an investigation, those fact wouldn’t explain why it didn’t come to fruition, nor, if it was stymied by someone, who stymied it. Even low-level ideologues can conduct a credible investigation and find facts that can identify criminal acts and actors.

Slowly leaking out, but leaking out nonetheless:

Obama is a traitor.

    Rank incompetence, moral bankruptcy and a self-perceived, smug sanctimony/intellectual superiority, all wrapped in a cloak of deceit and contempt for the U.S. and her allies, combine to make St. Obama the worst U.S. President in history, by a country mile. St. Obama makes Jimmy Carter look like Winston Churchill, by comparison.

    I long for a day when this country had never heard of the egotistical, insecure, attention-needing, petulant and arrogant hustler, St. Obama.

      Milhouse in reply to guyjones. | December 22, 2017 at 8:23 am

      He’s the worst since Woodrow Wilson, for sure. Worst in history? Debatable. But he’ll never be forgotten. He did too much damage for that.

The Politico story was “heavily edited.”

This the braggart who bragged about lying to the gullible reporters almost daily. This is the man who came up with the “Video” defense of Benghazi. This is the lizard who worked with obama to tell the most lies to the American people by one administration in our history. He has no idea what the word ethics means. He should be put out in public in one of the old stocks so that all could walk by and spit, kick, and urinate on him.

    guyjones in reply to inspectorudy. | December 22, 2017 at 3:16 am

    Rhodes is utterly vile, as much so as his narcissist former boss.

    Rhodes is also the dunce who penned Obama’s farcical 2009 Cairo speech, an embarrassing and truly contemptible exercise in fawning and obsequious Islamo-flattery, Islamo-historical revisionism/whitewashing and Islamo-victimology that flagellated the west for alleged, non-existent slights against Muslims, while simultaneously completely absolving Muslims of bearing any responsibility for the belligerent, anti-Semitic and violent behavior of their co-religionists in adhering to supremacist and belligerent Islamic doctrines.

    This speech, along with Obama’s equally despicable and morally obtuse U.N. performance admonishing that “the future must not belong to those who slander the [warlord] of Islam” will rightly go down in history as the most shamefully self-debasing and morally bankrupt words ever uttered by a U.S. President.

      mailman in reply to guyjones. | December 22, 2017 at 7:26 am

      I would like to think what you say will come to pass but sadly no. Liberals will love Barry for all eternity no matter what dirt is dug up on him.

      They love him more than they love the truth and you cannot show a blind man the truth.

Being a regular reader of Toady Rhodes’s twitter stream, I’m reminded of RW Emerson’s line: “The louder he talked of his honor, the faster we counted our spoons.”

Just imagine if, in an alternate reality, Politico had published the following story:

“The Trump Administration found itself confronting a new scandal, today, when Administration sources revealed that President Trump had snuffed out a DEA operation that had been working for years to identify and undermine terrorist group Hezb’allah’s sophisticated, billion-dollar U.S. cocaine-smuggling operation — all because he had wanted to avoid embarrassing Iran, Hezb’allah’s patron — in pursuit of a peace “deal.” Thus, to sum up — the venal, callous and morally depraved Trump had no problem facilitating a terrorist group’s importation of cocaine into the U.S.’s urban areas and was totally indifferent to its effect on certain black families, as long as his pet vanity project went unperturbed.”


We’d never be hearing the end of it from the Leftits media. But, because, in actuality, this legitimate and bombshell scandal didn’t involve the hated Trump, but, rather, the Left’s canonized saint who is perpetually above and beyond even a scintilla of reproach, St. Obama the Infallible, we hear…crickets.

Not that more evidence was needed on this score to confirm what is already patently obvious to the rational observer, but, the sheer venality, self-congratulatory and smug vanity, moral bankruptcy/callousness and rank deceit of vile Obama and his lackeys continues to amaze.

Meanwhile, St. Obama struts around the world stage with all the swagger of a self-perceived grand statesman and moral sage who believes that he and his corrupt band of sycophant-lackeys actually accomplished positive things.

Hmmm. A trend is becoming ever more obvious.

Yesterday’s Democrats—the party of slavers and war-mongers (every foreign war—from 1812 to Vietnam, excepting the war with Spain—started with a Dem in the White House).

Today’s Democrats—the party of serial rapists, gunrunners, and drug dealers.

Tomorrow’s Democrats—I don’t know yet … probably depths of depravity I have trouble imagining.

Rhodes’ prickly and haughty defensiveness and attacks upon the reporter are revealing.

The reporter clearly touched a nerve by revealing behavior that tarnishes the narrative of St. Obama the Infallible as the defender of urban communities and as an allegedly morally upright actor.

Maybe the alleged quote from Hitlery after she lost the election: “Now we are all going to hang” is not alleged.

Interesting how we ‘forget’ that the very first check Obama and then SecState Clinton authorized paid out of our Treasury in 2009 was over $900-Million to the Palestinian Authority and Hezbollah (same day he signed EO to close Gitmo) – later, he released the $150B seized by Bush, then paid Iran interest on that $150B (with pallets of laundered, shrink-wrapped, foreign currency) in the “cash for American prisoners” trade. Ben Rhodes is a lacky idiot totally in the tank for ELITES and the Marxist “New World ODOR”