Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe has declassified notes taken by former CIA Director John Brennan along with a CIA memo from 2016, citing intelligence claiming Hillary Clinton approved of an alleged plot by her campaign to accuse then-candidate Donald Trump of collusion with Russia in order to distract from her email scandal ahead of the election.
What are the details?
Last week, Ratcliffe wrote a letter informing Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), “In late July 2016, U.S. intelligence agencies obtained insight into Russian intelligence analysis alleging that U.S. Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton had approved a campaign plan to stir up a scandal against U.S. Presidential candidate Donald Trump by tying him to [Russian President Vladimir] Putin and the Russians’ hacking of the Democratic National Committee.”
Ratcliffe noted, “The IC does not know the accuracy of this allegation or the extent to which the Russian intelligence analysis may reflect exaggeration or fabrication.”
As TheBlaze previously reported:
Ratcliffe went on to say that former Central Intelligence Agency Director John Brennan briefed former President Barack Obama on the claims garnered from Russian intelligence. Those claims were also forwarded to then-FBI Director James Comey and then-Deputy Assistant Director of Counterintelligence Peter Strzok.
On Tuesday, Ratcliffe provided documentation to back up his letter, releasing a heavily redacted CIA memo from September 2016 addressed to Strzok, which describes “an exchange … discussing U.S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s approval of a plan concerning U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump and Russian hackers hampering U.S. elections as a means of distracting the public from her use of a private email server.”
The DNI also released notes taken by Brennan, who was CIA director at the time, showing he jotted, “Cite alleged approval by Hillary Clinton (on 28 July) on proposal from one of her foreign policy advisors to villify (sic) Donald Trump by stirring up a scandal claiming interference by the Russian security service.”
Brennan also wrote “any evidence of collaboration between Trump campaign & Russia,” in a bullet point next to where he had written “POTUS” in the margin.
According to an exclusive report from Fox News, “A source familiar with the documents explained that Brennan’s handwritten notes were taken after briefing Obama on the matter.”
The outlet pointed out that much of “the notes are redacted, except in the margins, which reads: ‘JC,’ ‘Denis,’ and ‘Susan,'” adding, “The notes don’t spell out the full names but ‘JC’ could be referring to then-FBI Director James Comey, ‘Susan’ could refer to National Security Adviser Susan Rice, and ‘Denis’ could refer to Obama chief of staff Denis McDonough.”
Following Ratcliffe’s letter to Graham last week, a Clinton spokesperson called the Russian intelligence claims “baseless bulls**t.”
But Racliffe told Fox on Tuesday, “To be clear, this is not Russian disinformation and has not been assessed as such by the Intelligence Community. I’ll be briefing Congress on the sensitive sources and methods by which it was obtained in the coming days.”