FILLING THE GAPS IN THE MUELLER REPORT, PART THREE: FACTCHECK - Testimony and Reporting that “Cambridge Analytica did not Collude with Russia" are Obscenely False. We Give this Five Goat Bricks.
By Alex Constantine
The Mueller report was admirable, but it wasn't complete. The investigation had very narrow aims. It was limited by Mueller's professional discipline, adherence to strict DoJ guidelines, AG dictates, and a policy of pursuing only cases with some certainty of resulting in criminal conviction. Cambridge Analytica -- re-representing foreign influence (the UK's) on the 2016 election -- was central to his investigation, but he was forced to wade through a deep bog of lies to make headway to the company's interactions with Russian intelligence.
To wit: In February, 2018, Alexander Nix, CEO of Cambridge Analytica, told UK's ministers of Parliament:
“We have never worked with a Russian organization in Russia or any other company. We do not have any relationship with Russia or Russian individuals.”
Mr. Nix's testimony was contradicted by Chris Wylie, former research director at Cambridge Analydica and its parent company, the SCL Group. Wylie's comments on the company's Russian ties appeared in an affidavit submitted to Parliament along with supplementary evidence supporting his testimony:
" ... During the Facebook harvesting scheme, the lead psychologist on the project, Dr Aleksandr Kogan, was also working on a Russian-funded research project at St Petersburg University on scaled psychological profiling of data subjects. Dr Kogan’s research focused on online trolls and Dark Triad personality traits (machiavellianism, narcissism and psychopathy).
"Contemporaneous to Dr Kogan’s psychological profiling and online troll research in Russia, CA was also in close contact with senior executives at Lukoil, one of Russia’s largest oil companies.
"After receiving a request for information from Lukoil about CA’s work in the spring of 2014, CA discussed with Lukoil its experience with foreign disinformation, rumour campaigns, microtargeting and its data assets from Ripon. This is documented in correspondence and slide decks in the committee’s possession. ...
"It should be noted that Lukoil has formal information sharing agreements with the Russian Federal
Security Service (“FSB”) and is known to conduct intelligence gathering on behalf of the FSB with
European companies it engages.
"It should also be noted that CA’s parent company, SCL Group, manages NATO psychological operations, projects in the Baltic region and would have likely already been an intelligence target for the FSB. This means that in addition to processing Facebook data in Russia, there are reasonable grounds to suspect that CA may have been an intelligence target of Russian security services at the time of Project Ripon, that the FSB may have been notified of the existence of CA’s Facebook data and that they could covertly access those same data assets inside Russia via accessing Dr Kogan’s work and computers. There are also reasonable grounds to investigate the extent of Dr Kogan’s knowledge of any such accessing.
"As Data Controller, CA had a legal duty to ensure the data was protected from these threats. Cambridge Analytica’s behaviour was also reckless given its extensive experience working in counterterrorism and military projects for the British and American governments. However, the company has a documented history of reckless handling of sensitive data.
"In 2014, SCL Group ... for mishandling sensitive Ministry of Defence information. The DSTL assessment was done in the same year as the GSR Facebook harvesting. ..."
So why the cover up? Alexander Nix categorically denied that Cambridge Analytica had any ties to Russian intelligence. This was two years after Trump's escalation to the presidency. What could be so incriminating that he felt compelled to perjure up his statements to Parliament?
Headline from Business Insider, March 22, 2018:
Hillary Clinton wants to know if Cambridge Analytica and Russian operatives worked together to derail her presidential campaign ..."
FILLING IN THE GAPS IN THE MUELLER REPORT, PART FOUR: Nix, Mercer, Bannon, Cambridge Analytica & the Russian Oligarch