Monday, June 12, 2017

My Favorite Experts

With all of the craziness taking place within our federal government at the highest levels, I have become addicted to cable news and certain specific "talking heads."  I am speaking of them as a commentator or reporter who is interviewed with a camera close-up of their head, neck and shoulders.  And my list of favorite people is increasing each week.  My favorite folks with their own shows are: Rachel Maddow, Joy Reid, Chris Hayes, Lawrence O'Donnell, Ari Melber, Jake Tapper and Wolf Blitzer.  My favorite commentators and experts are: Clint Watts, Malcolm Nance, Naveed Jamali, Matt Miller, and David Cay Johnston.  and, of course, I have a whole slew of Congressional favorites - Maxine Waters, Bernie Sanders, Al Franken, Eric Swalwell, Rob Warner, and Ted Lieu, to name a few....
   I sat, riveted, while ex-FBI Director James Comey gave his testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee this past Thursday - with Preet Bharara in the audience as support.  Bharara, a former US District Attorney, was also fired by the idiot in the White House.  Bharara, like Comey, was also investigating 45 and ties to Russia.  Hummmmm....  I smell something fishy there.
   I will watch, also with great interest, when the new Attorney General will testify tomorrow before the same Committee.  Sessions is a big a liar as his boss, the toupeed cheeto.  Both men are blatant bigots regarding race, religion, and money.   I have the feeling that the Ag will attempt to make his questioners believe he is a very forgetful innocent, who misunderstands a lot of things.
    I just finished reading Malcolm Nance's book, The Plot to Hack America: How Putin's Cyberspies and WikiLeaks Tried to Steal the 2016 Election.  Wow.  The book was amazing, and, as Malcolm was a Navy cryptologist during his 20 years of military service, he is capable of describing cyber warfare in easily understood English.  Fluent in Arabic, he is active in the field of national security policy particularly, in anti- and counter-terrorism intelligence, terrorist strategy and tactics, torture and counter-ideology in combating Islamic extremism. He studied Russian in high school and worked as an interpreter; then began working in the intelligence field through research into the history of the Soviet Union and the KGB.  He subsequently devoted years of research analyzing Middle East terrorism and sovereign nations with ties to Russia.  Mlacolm has a great sense of humor, too.  It's a fascinating book.
    Naveed Jamali is a former FBI operative and an expert on American national security.  His parents are French and Pakistani, and he is a native-born American.  Naveed graduated from the university with a degree in political science and government.  After 9/11, he reached out to the FBI to offer his services.  He later became a double agent when a Russian GRU member named Oleg Kulikov attempted to recruit him.  The ruse lasted from 2005 into 2009, during which time Kulikov paid agent Jamali for what he thought were classified documents.  The operation ended with jamali being "arrrested" by the FBI in front of Kulikov, which blew Kulikov's cover as a diplomat in the USA.  Naveed teamed with Ellis Henican to write  How to Catch a Russian Spy: The True Story of an American Civilian Turned Double Agent.  Naveed Jamali is a Senior Fellow in the Program on National Security at the Foreign Policy Research Institute, and serves as an intelligence officer in the US Naval Reserve.
    Clint Watts is an extremely thoughtful and articulate man.  He received his BS from the United States Military Academy, and subsequently an MA from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies (in 2005).  Clint served in the US Army as a staff officer in Seoul, Korea, an officer in the Infantry, and as a US Ranger. He was the Executive Officer of the Combating Terrorism Center at the USMA at West Point.  After the 9/11 attacks, he was recruited into the FBI, to help coordinate efforts combating terrorism across multiple governmental agencies. Watts also worked as a Special Agent for the FBI; in this capacity he served on the Joint Terrorism Task Force.  He also has consulted for the FBI Counterterrorism Division, and for the FBI National Security Branch.  Clint is currently a Foreign Policy Research Institute fellow, joining them in 2011.  He became the FPRI Robert A Fox Fellow in the initiative focusing on Middle East Studies.  He is also the Senior Fellow at the Center for Cyber and Homeland Security at George Washington University.  He does consulting work for, and teaches at, police agencies, intelligence sources, and the military.

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