There is nuance within the directive for declassification by President Trump. The sets of documents are not identical in the way they are classified within the intelligence apparatus. There are distinct differences and conflicting reports [Bloomberg Report and Washington Examiner] perhaps based on conflation and miss-identification of those differences. First, Sara Carter:
Breaking down the presidential directive to the four component parts helps understanding the issue(s), and the likelihood for redactions within the release(s):
- (1) pages 10-12 and 17-34 of the June 2017 application to the FISA court in the matter of Carter W. Page;
- (2) all FBI reports of interviews with Bruce G. Ohr prepared in connection with the Russia investigation;
- (3) all FBI reports of interviews prepared in connection with all Carter Page FISA applications.
- (4) publicly release of all text messages relating to the Russia investigation, without redaction, of James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, and Bruce Ohr.
(1) “pages 10-12 and 17-34 of the June 2017 application to the FISA court in the matter of Carter W. Page.”
This request is generally familiar; and the proprietary interest/ownership of the document, the June 29th, 2017 FISA renewal application, is already in the hands of DNI Dan Coats. While DNI Coats will likely follow the process of requesting feedback from the IC community (mostly FBI and DOJ), the removal of prior redactions -and the subsequent declassification- is pretty straight forward.
(2) “all FBI reports of interviews with Bruce G. Ohr prepared in connection with the Russia investigation.”
This request is a little less straight forward; but from the sketchy DOJ and FBI perspective, also not that big an issue. This is simply releasing the dozen FD-302 reports from FBI officials debriefing and interviewing Bruce Ohr. There may be some valid sources and methods that need to be redacted (ex. if Ohr mentioned a human source or intelligence asset); however, the redactions should likely be very minimal.
(3) “all FBI reports of interviews prepared in connection with all Carter Page FISA applications.”
This is where the corrupt FBI and DOJ begin to get twitchy. This is a high risk declassification for the corrupt intelligence usurpers. This section appears to be where former CIA Director John Brennan is demanding DNI Coats and the FBI and DOJ leadership must defy the president. It is in this request for all “reports and interviews” where the intelligence assets (ie. Stefan Halper, Joseph Mifsud, Alexander Downer) and those intelligence sources who helped frame the Crossfire Hurricane operation are located.
Here, the FBI and DOJ will likely demand HEAVY redactions because revealing names could lead to questions, subpoenas and testimony. In this section it is likely Dan Coats would concur with redacting “sources and methods”. Redactions would be anticipated in this part of the declassification fulfillment (even if it wasn’t corrupt).
These three declassification directions are submitted to Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats to follow the process for declassification. However, not #4:
Then comes the political ‘biggie’:
(4) “publicly release of all text messages relating to the Russia investigation, without redaction, of James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, and Bruce Ohr”.
Key words”publicly release” and “without redaction“. Within this part of the directive the thousands of prior redactions are removed. There’s no valid reason for any of the redactions to have been put into place originally. Obviously someone inside the DOJ/FBI redacted those messages in an attempt to mitigate risk. No-one knows who made the decisions; and the FBI and DOJ never answered any prior questions about their reasoning.
The instructions within this section of the directive are not targeted to DNI Dan Coats; these instructions are directly to the FBI and DOJ:
In addition, President Donald J. Trump has directed the Department of Justice (including the FBI) to publicly release all text messages relating to the Russia investigation, without redaction, of James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Peter Strzok, Lisa Page, and Bruce Ohr. (full citation)
Presumably all of these messages were created over mobile devices, transmitted via open internet, likely did not carry authorized encryption, and therefore should not contain classified information upon creation. However, in this informal messaging and discussion there is likely high-risk to discovering additional details about the motives of the corrupt FBI investigation and their actions; hence the prior redactions.
Additionally, beyond redactions there are segments of the prior Page/Strzok messages where it appears message segments were removed entirely. Example:
- Lisa Page: “(Trump’s) not ever going to become president, right? Right?!”
- Peter Strzok: “No. No he’s not. We’ll stop it.”
That reply from Strzok was never included in the release from the FBI. The FBI intentionally hid the Strzok reply. The OIG only discovered it after their independent forensics noted the omission. Daily Caller [SEE HERE].
We already know the unnamed FBI officials doing the redactions were caught intentionally removing critical messages. There is no valid reason to justify any redactions or removals within this segment of the declassification directive.
Making an educated assumption here – it appears the DOJ and FBI segment with Sara Carter is likely describing this #4 section of the release. This section is highly reliant on the FBI (Wray) and DOJ (Rosenstein), because DNI Dan Coats did not, and does not, possess the underlying text message documents; and the text messages themselves are not considered classified material.
As previously stated, the corrupt elements within the FBI and DOJ are going to fight against transparency and sunlight; they will be bolstered by corrupt democrats who are attempting to hide the prior administration malfeasance. Their unified goal will be to delay and obstruct as long as possible. We have to wait and see what ultimately comes from this presidential directive.