Multiple sources have revealed to Fox News that Susan Rice — the former national security adviser under then-President Barack Obama — requested to unmask the names of Trump transition officials caught up in government surveillance.
Via Fox News:
The unmasked names, of people associated with Donald Trump, were then sent to all those at the National Security Council, some at the Defense Department, then-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and then-CIA Director John Brennan – essentially, the officials at the top, including former Rice deputy Ben Rhodes.
The names were part of incidental electronic surveillance of candidate and President-elect Trump and people close to him, including family members, for up to a year before he took office.
When names of U.S. citizens are collected incidentally, they are supposed to be redacted from reports to protect those identities. According to Fox, there are loopholes and ways to unmask through backchannels, but Americans are supposed to be protected from incidental collection.
In this case, they were not.
The new information comes after Evelyn Farkas, the former Obama deputy secretary of defense, said on MSNBC, “I was urging my former colleagues and, frankly speaking, the people on the Hill – it was more actually aimed at telling the Hill people, get as much information as you can, get as much intelligence as you can, before President Obama leaves the administration.”
Meanwhile, House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes knew about unmasking and leaking back in January. This was well before President Trump’s tweet in March alleging Obama of spying.
Once again, it seems as though President Trump is right. But will the media give this story the attention it deserves — and more importantly, will there be consequences for Susan Rice? RSP