William Binney insists that the hack on the Democratic National Conference came from with the US – despite the intelligence community’s findings early this year that Russia had interfered in the 2016 presidential election.
Binney, one of the ‘NSA four’ whose revelations and warnings about government mass surveillance predates those of Edward Snowden, has now confirmed that he met with Pompeo on October 24 to discuss research by the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) that suggested the DNC hack was an ‘inside job.’
Pompeo opened the meeting with the former NSA employee by telling him: ‘The President told me I should talk to you,’ Binney told CNN.
CIA director Mike Pompeo (left) recently met with NSA whistleblower William Binney (right) at President Trump’s urging, to discuss his claims that the DNC leak was an inside job
Binney said Pompeo ended the hour-long meeting by telling him he’d like the whistleblower to also meet with the FBI and the NSA.
‘The entire intelligence community needs to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth to the American public,’ Binney says he told the CIA director.
The DNC’s hack revealed email conversations that made the party look to be in favor of nominating Clinton over her rival, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, forcing chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz to step down as the Democratic National Convention was kicking off and damaging Clinton’s campaign.
Instead of pointing fingers at the Russians, Binney thought that perhaps someone from inside the NSA could have hacked the DNC as retribution for Clinton leaking ‘Gamma material’ via her private server.
‘Now that is the most sensitive material at NSA,’ Binney explained. ‘And so there were a number of NSA officials complaining to the press … She lifted the material that was in her emails directly from Gamma reporting.’
‘That is a direct compromise of the most sensitive material at the NSA. So she’s got a real problem there,’ the whistleblower added.
‘So there are many people who have problems with what she has done in the past,’ he said. ‘So I don’t necessarily look at the Russians as the only [ones] who got into those emails,’ he concluded.
But a declassified intelligence report, gathered the CIA, the FBI, and the NSA, and made public in January stated in no unclear terms that Russia had been behind the DNC leak as part of their campaign to undermine the 2016 US, in particular, to damage Hillary Clinton’s campaign.
Trump (pictured) has frequently, and publicly rejected findings Russia was behind the DNC hack, suggesting that the hackers could be from other countries to a ‘400-pound guy’ lying in his bed
The report stated that: ‘Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the US presidential election. Russia’s goals were to undermine public faith in the US democratic process, denigrate Secretary Clinton, and harm her electability and potential presidency,’ The Intercept reported.
‘We further assess Putin and the Russian Government developed a clear preference for President-elect Trump.’
However, Trump has frequently, and publicly rejected such findings, suggesting that the hackers could be from other countries to a ‘400-pound guy’ lying in his bed.
So it may not be altogether surprising that he was behind the meeting between Pompeo and Binney.
Binney, a 30-plus year veteran of the NSA and a ‘legendary crypto-scientist’ according to the Nation magazine, had helped design one of the NSA’s systems to collect date that had built-in privacy protections before he says it was shelved for a program that instead allowed for warrant-less surveillance of American citizens.
He believes that analysis of the DNC hack data transfer makes it ‘very clear it was a local download, because of the speeds and all,’ RT reported.
He added that his colleagues had set up an experiment, sending data between New Jersey and the UK, and were unable to reproduce the download involved in the DNC hack.
News of the meeting between Pompeo and Binney has not gone down well with many inside the CIA, according to CNN’s sources.
A declassified intelligence report released in January stated that Russian President Vladimir Putin (pictured) was behind the leaks and had ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the US presidential election
The CIA has since released a statement saying that Pompeo ‘stands by and has always stood by the January 2017 intelligence community assessment’ that Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election.
But it isn’t the first time people have questioned Pompeo’s stance on the Russian hack.
During his appearance at the Aspen Security Forum, an annual gathering of intelligence and national security officials and experts in Aspen, Colorado, last July, he appeared to downplay the significance of Russia’s meddling in the election, saying they’d interefered in 2016, ‘And the one before that, and the one before that’.
When a New York Times columnist asked him if he was downplaying Russian’s interference by saying it was a common occurrence, Pompeo grew agitated.
‘I am confident that the Russians meddled in this election, as is the entire intelligence community,’ Pompeo said. ‘I hope I didn’t stop at 2008 [for when he says Russian began interfering in U.S. elections]. You can go back to the 70s. My point was simply this: This threat is real. The U.S. government, including the Central Intelligence Agency, has to figure out a way to fight back against it and defeat it. And we’re intent upon doing that.’
Then in October, the CIA was forced to issue a clarification after Pompeo said that the Russian meddling in 2016, ‘did not affect the outcome of the election.’
CIA spokesman Dean Boyd swiftly responded to the statement, saying ‘the intelligence assessment with regard to Russian election meddling has not changed, and the director did not intend to suggest that it had.’