Former national security adviser to Barack Obama, Susan Rice quietly met with Senate intelligence committee members in a closed-door meeting Friday.
Rice, one of three former Obama officials who met with the panel this week, has come under sharp scrutiny from some House Republicans because they believe she improperly “unmasked” — or revealed the identities collected in intelligence gathering — of Trump associates in US intelligence reports. She has vigorously denied any wrongdoing.
“Ambassador Rice met voluntarily with the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence today as part of the committee’s bipartisan investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 US presidential election,” said Erin Pelton, a spokesperson for Rice, who also served as Obama’s US ambassador to the United Nations. “Ambassador Rice appreciates the Committee’s efforts to examine Russia’s efforts to interfere, which violated one of the core foundations of American democracy.”
Rice’s appearance Friday marks the latest high-profile witness to privately meet with the panel ahead of the Senate’s upcoming summer recess, with investigators meeting with former Obama chief of staff Denis McDonough and James Clapper, who was Obama’s former director of national intelligence. And on Monday, Senate staff will interview Jared Kushner, the President’s son-in-law and senior adviser, whose meetings with Russian officials have prompted serious questions from investigators.
As TGP previously reported, independent journalist, Mike Cernovich first broke the story about Susan Rice’s role in the “unmasking” of Trump team officials. Cernovich also recounted to his YouTube audience how he broke one of the biggest stories of the year.
Mike Cernovich via The Medium.
The White House Counsel’s office identified Rice as the person responsible for the unmasking after examining Rice’s document log requests. The reports Rice requested to see are kept under tightly-controlled conditions. Each person must log her name before being granted access to them.
Upon learning of Rice’s actions, H. R. McMaster dispatched his close aide Derek Harvey to Capitol Hill to brief Chairman Nunes.
“Unmasking” is the process of identifying individuals whose communications were caught in the dragnet of intelligence gathering. While conducting investigations into terrorism and other related crimes, intelligence analysts incidentally capture conversations about parties not subject to the search warrant. The identities of individuals who are not under investigation are kept confidential, for legal and moral reasons.
Sources also told Senior Fox News correspondent, Adam Housley that the unmasking was purely for political purposes to embarrass Trump and had NOTHING to do with national security.