I have REFUSED to read or listen to any and all other analyses prior to this posting. I don't want to be influenced. I want to react to it as I would to any other classified memo I would have received during my career in the State Department. I will read and listen other analyses later, and perhaps adjust my own.
There is no reason, in my view, of course, for this memo to have been classified at the "Top Secret" level; that's way over classification. This memo should rate no more than a "Secret" or even perhaps more appropriate a "Confidential" rating. No sensitive methods are discussed in the memo or damaged by its release; no sensitive sources are named in the memo or blown by its release. This is not a TS document. The causing of embarrassment to certain individuals or institutions if the memo went public is not justification for a TS label.
The memo is well-written but too short. The information it mentions needs considerably more discussion and investigation. A great deal of "good" stuff got left in the ink well.
That said, this memo is devastating to the whole Russia collusion narrative. It also provides a very disturbing glimpse into an FBI and a DOJ gone amok and fully involved in affecting the electoral process to ensure the victory of Hillary Clinton. There is no way around that. The FBI and the DOJ, and perhaps other intel and law enforcement agencies, are shown as politically motivated, and willing to subvert the rule of law in the pursuit of the objectives of their political bosses. That is outrageous, and those organizations need a thorough purge.
I find extremely disturbing that the FBI acknowledged that the author of the infamous GPS Fusion "Dossier" on Trump, ex-British intel officer Steele, was minimally reliable, that the FBI had not corroborated the Dossier, and yet, "Deputy Director McCabe testified before the Committee in December 2017 that no surveillance warrant would been sought from the FISC without the Steele dossier information." It gets worse. It seems Steele had been briefing certain journalists on his "findings" and the FBI and DOJ used those press reports in their filing with the court as validation for the information in the dossier. Another outrage.
The memo seems to confirm what I speculated nearly a year ago,
The Dems claim that Trump is in bed with the Russians; Trump denies it and countercharges that the Dems had him under surveillance. We have here a problem. If the Dems have official intel on Trump's connections with Russia, how did they get it? Presumably from the official intel services which then it would appear were monitoring Russian contacts with Trump's people. If there was no surveillance order given to US intel, from where did the intel on Russian contacts come? The British is apparently the Trump answer. I have a more plausible one. I think there was surveillance of Russian activity, probably by the NSA, and it found nothing to show that Trump had contacts with the Russians; the Obamistas and the Clintonistas then made up the accounts of Russian interference. In other words, they lied. That's the most charitable explanation I can develop. There, of course, are harsher ones which I hope are not accurate, ones that would show, once again, Obama's misuse of the nation's intel and enforcement capabilities.The Dems made the whole thing up, paid somebody to write a fake dossier, got the FBI to employ that same somebody (Steele), and then got DOJ to go to the courts with the fake dossier as a justification for spying on the Trump campaign.
The Dems, including, of course, the reprehensible Obama misadministration, used our government agencies as their personal hit-men and shredded the Constitutional protections we all should enjoy.