We have to wake up every day now expecting a new revelation in the Trump campaign/Russia saga. We all want to know what happened as the plot ceaselessly thickens.
This week we learned another startling connection.
Pluribus International Corporation defense contractor Reality Winner (Yes, that is her REAL name) is facing ten years in prison for possibly leaking classified information about Russian interference in the US election.
Winner allegedly printed a National Security Agency (NSA) document detailing how Russia hacked a Florida voting equipment vendor and sent spear-phishing emails to over 100 local election officials up until days before election day. She then sent the document to The Intercept.
The May 5 report is the most detailed government account of Russian interference in the election yet to transpire.
It states Russian military intelligence, specifically the Russian General Staff Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU), conducted the cyber attacks:
“Russian General Staff Main Intelligence Directorate actors … executed cyber espionage operations against a named U.S. company in August 2016, evidently to obtain information on elections-related software and hardware solutions. … The actors likely used data obtained from that operation to … launch a voter registration-themed spear-phishing campaign targeting U.S. local government organizations.”
Now congressional lawmakers from both sides of the aisle are calling for Winner’s full prosecution under the Espionage Act.
Ranking Member of the Senate Intelligence Committee Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) is co-leader of an intel committee probe into Russian cyber activities. He told USA Today on Tuesday:
“Whoever’s the leaker should be pursued to the full extent of the law.”
Warner praised the intelligence gained from Winner’s revelation, though:
“The extent of the attacks is much broader than has been reported so far.”
A government affidavit alleges an unnamed Intercept reporter disclosed information about the document and the location from which it was mailed to a separate government contractor to determine its authenticity, leading to Winner’s capture hours after the publication of The Intercept story.
The government claims the information the reporter provided helped narrow the pool of suspects down to Reality Winner.
“Winner faces allegations that have not been proven. The same is true of the FBI’s claims about how it came to arrest Winner.”
Most mainstream media outlets seem to be reporting not Reality Winner’s actions in attempting to expose the hugest potential bombshell in the Trump/Russia investigation to date, but her personal animus toward the president, her environmentalist background, and interviews with her family.
All this begs the question: Who is the real criminal, Russia or Reality?
Featured image from YouTube video.