Tales of The Corrupted: David Ignatius’s Hillary E-mail Scandal Whitewash, PART TWO….And, As Usual, The Sequel Is A Horrible Disappointment

David Ignatius: Liar, undisclosed Clinton operative, disgrace. Your move, Washington Post.

David Ignatius: Liar, undisclosed Clinton operative, disgrace. Your move, Washington Post.

This, it turns out, is even worse than I thought. Ignatius, whom I once respected, is more corrupted than I thought. The mainstream news media’s shameless and unethical enabling of Hillary Clinton’s lies and misconduct is worse than I thought, and I already thought it was bad.

In this post, I highlighted an op-ed column by Washington Post columnist David Ignatius, which used classic rationalizations to argue that Clinton’s conduct wasn’t a “scandal’ because 1) it wasn’t a crime; 2) if it was a crime, it was unlikely to be prosecuted; 3) everybody does it, and 4) the public is used to such misconduct, so it can’t be a scandal.

One of Ignatius’s sources, extensively quoted, was, in his words, “Jeffrey Smith, a former CIA general counsel who’s now a partner at Arnold & Porter, where he often represents defendants suspected of misusing classified information.”

What I didn’t know, and Ignatius’s readers didn’t know, but Clinton knows, and Smith knows and Ignatius definitely knew but intentionally didn’t disclose to his readers, was that Jeffrey Smith…

  • ..headed the Clinton Transition Team at the US Department of Defense in 1992 and 1993.
  • …As CIA general counsel during the first Clinton administration in 1995-96.
  • …served as a media defender of Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry in 2004 in response to  Bush campaign accusations that Kerry weakened U.S. intelligence in the Clinton years.

In short, he wasn’t an “expert,” giving objective analysis to a journalist regarding Clinton’s handling of State Department e-mails in violation of Department policies, best national security practices, and quite possibly the law–and that was how David Ignatius, trusted journalist, presented him.  Far from being objective, Jeffrey Smith is a Clinton crony, a long time associate of the Clintons, and, I would guess, on Hillary’s payroll. He would have been behaving unethically if he misled Ignatius about his loyalties, but of course he didn’t. He was sought out by Ignatius either because the columnist knew he was a Clinton ally, or worse, because the Clinton campaign told Ignatius to use him as his “expert.”

I run out of adjectives to accurately reflect what a miserable betrayal of the Post’s readers and the principles of journalism ethics this represents. The conduct makes Ignatius no less than a Democratic Party operative, but worse, unlike most operatives, he’s posing as a truth-teller, a trustworthy journalist.

Yet it gets worse. As the conservative press and blogosphere uncovered Ignatius’s deception and Smith’s true role (in a trustworthy news media culture, the Times, CNN, NBC, CBS and even the Post would have revealed this deception and condemned it), Ignatius decided to (or was forced to) declare that he had  omitted some things about Mr. Smith, and if you believe that it was an inadvertent omission, Big Foot and Nessie want a word with you. So he placed this at the end of another column on a completely unrelated topic a week later:

In my Aug. 28 column, “The Clinton non-scandal,” I cited the view of attorney Jeffrey Smith that there may not be any prosecutable criminal case in the apparently improper handling of classified material by Hillary Clinton and her aides. I should have noted that Smith was an adviser to Clinton’s 2008 campaign, in addition to being a former CIA general counsel.
Yes, he should have and could have, but then it would have been ridiculous to cite Smith, an obviously biased and partisan source, as his “expert.” So he didn’t, until he was caught. Even then, Ignatius didn’t fully disclose Smith’s contamination, which was much more extensive, as you see in the list above. Moreover, as Tom Blumer points out, Ignatius buried his correction and disclosure where readers of his undercover Hillary campaigning would not see it, rather thanm make the proper edit to the original op-ed, which in the digital era is “easy as pie.”If the Washington Post lets Ignatius get away with this dishonest punditry, half-disclosure and partisan campaigning, it has forfeited what little claim to respect and trust it possesses. This kind of thing poisons democracy. Hillary Clinton fosters it, and those who excuse her (about 75% of Democrats, according to the latest Gallup poll) cannot claim to care about fair elections, transparency and informed electorates.
As for David Ignatius, he is a disgrace to his paper (unless they have sunk to his abysmal level), his profession (though his profession is sinking fast) and the nation.

The Washington Post has an obligation to fire him as a liar and a fraud.

Pointer and Source: Newsbusters

Source: WSJ (Taranto)

21 thoughts on “Tales of The Corrupted: David Ignatius’s Hillary E-mail Scandal Whitewash, PART TWO….And, As Usual, The Sequel Is A Horrible Disappointment

  1. The Washington Compost was probably in on the deception, although they will never admit it. They MIGHT discipline him publicly to CTOA, but it’s unlikely.

    • I agree it is very unlikely, primarily because they see no NEED to CTOA anymore. They, both the Post and journalists in general, no longer feel that they have to justify what they do, such as lying to the public, because THEY ARE SHAPING PUBLIC OPINION, not reporting the news.

      • Except that the Post has been more balanced since Bezos took over, and was always better than the Times about bias. It has no ombudsperson, however. Is that better or worse than the Times, which has a fake one?

        • They ran pictures of all GOP candidates through a program that made them look light nightmares, then posted the pictures. They did no such thing to the Democratic bench. That’s where they lost me. To answer your question, though, I think having no person in the job is better than having a person serve as, essentially, a living lie.

  2. His bio is below. He’s obviously qualified — and he represents high profile Republicans as well. The fact that he HEADS the national security practice at one of the most prominent firms in the world should give you pause Jack.

    National Security
    Jeffrey Smith heads our national and homeland security practice, which regularly counsels both US and foreign companies on a wide range of national security issues. His practice includes advising major defense and aerospace companies and representing major media organizations and individuals with respect to First Amendment issues and unauthorized disclosures of classified information. He has frequently represented prominent individuals in congressional investigations and federal prosecutions. He also represents major universities on national security issues.

    Mr. Smith is a former General Counsel of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and currently serves on the Department of Defense Legal Policy Advisory Board. He has also served as General Counsel of the Senate Armed Services Committee and was Senator Sam Nunn’s designee to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and the Iran/Contra Committee. Prior to working for the Senate, he was the Assistant Legal Adviser for Law Enforcement and Intelligence at the State Department. Earlier, as an Army Judge Advocate General officer, he served as the Pentagon’s lawyer for the Panama Canal negotiations.

    In 1992 and 1993, Mr. Smith served as the chief of the Clinton Transition Team at the US Department of Defense. He also chaired the Joint Security Commission established in 1993 by Secretary of Defense Les Aspin and CIA Director James Woolsey to examine the security procedures of the defense and intelligence communities and the companies that contract with them. In addition, he served on the congressionally mandated Commission on Roles and Missions of the Armed Services.

    National Security Representative Matters
    Represents major European defense and aerospace companies with respect to mergers and acquisitions, contracting with the US government, relationships with the US government, export controls, issues of foreign ownership, and the performance of highly classified contracts.
    Represents major US defense and aerospace companies on a wide range of national security and government contracts issues, including transactions, internal investigations, congressional investigations, export controls, and sensitive national security issues.
    Represented Finmeccanica SpA in its acquisitions of DRS Technologies, Inc.
    Represented BAE Systems in its acquisitions of ArmorHoldings, United Defense, and DigitalNet.
    Represented DFI in its acquisition by Detica Group plc.
    Represents In-Q-Tel, the company established by the CIA to acquire high technology solutions for the US intelligence community.
    Represented Ambassador L. Paul Bremer with respect to his service as Administrator of the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq, including testimony at Congressional hearings.
    Represents the Newspaper Association of America and major media associations on “leaks” of classified information and First Amendment issues.
    Represents former senior officials in matters related to national security, including: Publication of manuscripts, negotiation of film rights, and donation of papers. Clients include former Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger, former Secretary of Defense the late Robert S. McNamara, and several authors, including former Senator Bob Graham and former CIA senior officer John O’Connell.
    Represents Mark Boal, the screenwriter for, among other films, “Zero Dark Thirty.”
    Represented several former senior government officials and current and former members of Congress in sensitive investigations, including criminal investigations and prosecutions, involving national security.
    Represented Martha Stewart in the House of Energy and Commerce Committee investigation of alleged insider trading.
    Represents several leading universities on public policy and national security matters.

    • So what? He has worked for Clinton CAMPAIGNS. He has served as a DEMOCRATIC SURROGATE. His expertise and experience is not at issue, so you should not mention it in this context. His objectivity and loyalties are. Ethically, Ignatius AND SMITH had an absolute, unavailable obligation to flag any connection to Clinton, especially evidence that he is a periodic employee.

      How hard would it be to find an objective expert on this topic with no connection to a candidate? Not very. If Ignatius found one that Hillary had in her pocket, he was looking for one.

      By the way, you know better than to make this argument. If a lawyer is disqualified from taking on a client because of one past representation, it’s no defense to cite all the other non-conflicting representations he or she had.

        • You know as well as I do that whatever the technical rules are, Hillary is nothing but an extension of Bill. Without Bill, Hillary vanished like invisible ink. Honestly, as far as flagging likely bias goes, I see no difference. Any Clinton employee from Bill’s administration can be assumed to seeking employment from Clinton #2.

        • So, if he is currently being paid from the Clinton charity, that doesn’t necessarily mean he is working for Hillary either, right? I mean, Bill and Chelsea’s name are on it too and it is a charity, it has nothing to do with them.

    • The above was written BEFORE I read Texagg’s comments on the Hax column. Now. I just feel silly.
      If you feel companionate, Jack, please remove it.

  3. Yes, Ignatius should have revealed more of Jeffery Smith’s background and if he had I’d have read the op-ed more carefully. Smith has a wonderful CV for a worthwile opinion in this area – both the relevant law and practice. Smith’s opinion is considerably more relevant than Ignatius’. I’d have paid no regard to hearing your three dot points, which are all over ten years old. Guys like this opining as an expert (which he clearly is) aren’t generally ‘for sale’ and they are nobody’s ‘crony’.

    • “Guys like this opining as an expert (which he clearly is) aren’t generally ‘for sale’ and they are nobody’s ‘crony’.”

      Two words for you, Andrew: Lanny Davis.

      And does anyone know where this guy went to law school? I’m guessing Yale in the late ‘sixties to early ‘seventies.

      • @ ‘Other Bill’. According to his firm’s website:
        JD, University of Michigan Law School, 1971
        BS in Civil Engineering, United States Military Academy, 1966

        Should this have been disclosed too? Doesn’t mean anything to me.

        • You really think guys in big law firms don’t sell their firms’ “prestige” as part of the package they’re trading in? I suspect this guy was put together with Ignatius by someone in Clintonland. and I also suspect he’s being paid by the Clintons.

        • You’re kidding or demented. An “expert” is consulted on a contentious matter of law that has a tangible and obvious effect on the fortunes of a political figure. If that “expert’s” back ground and associations show an alliance with either that figures policies, fortunes or support network, that argues against objectivity and suggests possible motives that would lead to bias. Any one who doesn’t think they matter doesn’t want to hear credible opinions. Such an expert would never be used in court, for example,nbecause his background would make hum useless.

          • Ignatius has already acknowledged that he should have disclosed
            Jeffery Smith’s background and has now done so. None of this makes Jeffery Smith’s opinion invalid and to be blocked out. We should hear his opinion loud and clear, and why others like you Jack disagree with him. A key role of the Fourth Estate should be to facilitate such a debate. All contributors could usefully disclose their biases. We are not in a court of law and nobody not Hilary Clinton) has to my knowledge been charged with any offence. Clearly some review of security rules for communication is needed, preferably before the next President and administration are signed in.

            • Not the point. The fact that he used a biased source tells us that Ignatius is a hack and a fraud. He disclosed because he was caught, and even then didn’t fully explain the bias. Smith’s opinion was OK on the law, but still spin. The issue isn’t criminal activity. It is the incompetence, the deception, and the lies. As I explain in the previous post on this matter, this is just a bunch of rationalizations from Smith. Now that I know his bias, it’s easier to understand.

    • Guys like this opining as an expert (which he clearly is) aren’t generally ‘for sale’ and they are nobody’s ‘crony’.

      Wow. That might be the saddest and most naive statement I’ve ever heard or read.

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