After Steele was caught leaking to the press, agents were ordered to stay away from him. To get around that, Bruce Ohr served as a direct link. By interviewing Ohr, agents could present Steele’s unverified fantasies to the FISA Court for phone tap warrants on Carter Page.
The Hill is trying hard to distance themselves from an article they printed twice. On July 26, they declared John Solomon’s piece an “opinion,” because of some stunning accusations with only a promise that the proof would be coming soon. “By early November 2016, Steele was terminated for unauthorized media contacts and the Federal Bureau of Investigation was turning to Bruce Ohr as a back channel,” Solomon wrote.
Now the smoking-gun documents have been released. “Hundreds of pages of previously unreported emails and memos, provide the clearest evidence yet,” Solomon writes. “Ohr’s own notes, emails and text messages,” verify he “communicated extensively with Steele and with Fusion GPS founder Glenn Simpson.”
The Hill updated the story August 8, to include the official FBI reports but still say it’s an “opinion” piece. Even so, expert opinions are valid “evidence” in court. It’s up to the Jury (or reader) to decide how much weight to give the “expert witness” based on his experience and what he has to say.
“John Solomon is an award-winning investigative journalist whose work over the years has exposed U.S. and FBI intelligence failures before the Sept. 11 attacks, federal scientists’ misuse of foster children and veterans in drug experiments, and numerous cases of political corruption.”
The latest political corruption uncovered by Solomon involves Bruce Ohr, a high ranking official at the Department of Justice. Ohr is married to Nellie Ohr who works closely with Fusion GPS founder, Glenn Simpson.
It has been well established that Simpson was hired by Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee to dig up any Russian “dirt” on Donald Trump to be found. Simpson hired former MI-6 agent Christopher Steele for the shovel work.
One of the biggest questions raised in the recently revealed memos concerns the role that both Ohr and the Department of Justice played in constructing a “counterintelligence case” against President Trump.
The memos, notes, and messages spell out how unverified “opposition research funded by his rival’s campaign, the DNC, and the DNC’s main law firm, Perkins Coie” was used as the core evidence to open investigations and obtain wire taps.
When Steele got back from Russia, he contacted his old friend Ohr. On July 1, 2016, he texted, “There is something separate I wanted to discuss with you informally and separately. It concerns our favorite business tycoon!”
For days later, he walked into the FBI branch office in Rome, Italy, to turn over his now infamous “dossier.” Ohr and Steele talked on Skype then met in Washington, D.C. at the Mayflower Hotel, on July 30, 2016.
Ohr was accompanied by his wife Nellie who worked at Fusion GPS and was directly involved in the “Trump-Russia research project.”
After their breakfast meeting, Steele sent a follow-up text. “Great to see you and Nellie this morning Bruce, let’s keep in touch on the substantive issues. Glenn is happy to speak to you on this if it would help.”
Calendar notations and notes in Ohr’s handwriting prove Ohr took him up on it and met with Glenn Simpson Aug. 22, 2016, “exactly one day before FBI counterintelligence official Peter Strzok formally opened an investigation.”
According to Ohr’s notes, Solomon observes that at least one point Steele fed the FBI was bogus. “Steele offered Ohr many other theories over their contacts, including a now widely discredited one that the Russian Alfa Bank had a computer server as a link to the Trump campaign.”
In October of 2016, the FBI used uncorroborated information to seek a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act warrant to monitor Carter Page. It was renewed at least three times yet Page was never charged. At least one of those warrants was approved by Ohr’s supervisor, Sally Yates.
Steele was banned from participating in the investigation in early November of 2016, just before the election because he leaked like a sieve. “The bureau concluded on Nov. 1, 2016, that he leaked information to the news media and was ‘not suitable for use’ as a confidential source,” Ohr’s records show.
They also verify that “the FBI specifically instructed Steele that he could no longer ‘operate to obtain any intelligence whatsoever on behalf of the FBI.”
Ohr’s notes document a meeting on November 21, 2016, with Peter Strzok, then-FBI attorney Lisa Page and “another agent.” Ohr noted the FBI officials told him they “may go back to Chris” even though they weren’t supposed to.
After that meeting, Ohr appears to have become a stand-in substitute for Christopher Steele. When the FBI wanted to use something from the dossier, they interviewed Ohr, took a 302 report to legitimize the evidence as first party testimony instead of the third-party hearsay it was said to be, and used it like real evidence.
After President Trump was sworn into office, On January 31, 2017, Steele and Ohr had an extended text conversation. Sally Yates had just been fired for insubordination.
“B, doubtless a sad and crazy day for you re- SY,” Steele typed. He was worried that Ohr might be next out the door and wondered who he should use as a backdoor channel if anything went south.
“Just want to check you are okay, still in the site and able to help locally as discussed, along with your Bureau colleagues.” Steele already knew about Peter Strzok and Lisa Page.
Ohr was reassuring. “I’m still here and able to help as discussed, I’ll let you know if that changes.”
Steele wasn’t very reassured. “If you end up out though, I really need another (bureau?) contact point/number who is briefed. We can’t allow our guy to be forced to go back home. It would be disastrous.” Congressional investigators are currently running down the lead to find out who “our guy” is. As far as “briefed” that sounds like it translates to, “in on the plot.”