12 Biggest Bombshells In FBI’s Clinton Investigation Notes
The FBI released 189 pages of notes late Friday from 46 interviews it conducted as part of its Hillary Clinton email investigation.
The documents provide new information about questionable activity on the part of Clinton aides and computer technicians who managed her private email server. The notes also reveal new details about Clinton’s and President Obama’s email practices.
A dozen of the most interesting revelations are listed below.
Obama’s Iran negotiator might have had Gmail hacked while negotiating nuclear deal
Former State Department official Wendy Sherman served as Obama administration’s top negotiator on the Iran nuclear deal.
She also used a Gmail account to conduct government business, she told the FBI.
Sherman admitted to investigators that she believed that hacks were attempted on her Gmail account and the email accounts of her negotiating team during at least one negotiation session.
“However, [Sherman] explained [she] was sure people tried to hack into [her] personal email account and the accounts of [her] team approximately two years ago during [redacted] in the Iran negotiations,” the report reads.
Sherman is considered to be a candidate for Clinton’s secretary of state.
Clinton IT tech’s infamous Reddit post explained?
Last week it was revealed that in July 2014, Paul Combetta, the Platte River Networks technician who managed Clinton’s email server, asked for advice on the website Reddit for how to “strip out” Clinton’s email address from her emails.
When the posts, from July 24, 2014, were discovered, someone, likely Combetta, began deleting them.
The revelation prompted an investigation from two House Committees and a congressional order to Reddit to preserve Combetta’s post. (RELATED: Hillary’s Computer Tech Asked Reddit How To ‘Strip Out’ Email Addresses)
The FBI notes appear to shed light on Combetta’s activities.
Combetta told the FBI that Cheryl Mills, Clinton’s State Department chief of staff and personal lawyer, “was concerned” that when Clinton’s emails were provided to the State Department, the email address she was using at the time would be publicly disclosed. Clinton used HDR22@clintonemail.com as secretary of state but switched to HROD17@clintonemail.com in 2013.
Combetta told the FBI that he was unable to find a solution. Some of the emails Clinton gave the State Department show her old address while others show her newer address.
Hillary’s lawyer asked computer technician about “wiping” computer data
Bryan Pagliano, the State Department computer technician who set up Clinton’s private email system, told the FBI that in 2013, Mills asked him about software for “wiping computer data.”
Mills, who has been at the center of numerous Clinton cover-ups, was granted immunity by the Justice Department in order to cooperate with the investigation. Pagliano was as well.
It’s unclear exactly what Mills wanted with the software. But she would go on to head up the effort to review Clinton’s emails before giving them to the State Department in December 2014.
Clinton also had a Gmail account
Clinton used a Gmail account for a short period in 2011 after the private server lost service during Hurricane Irene. Clinton did not reveal that information even though the email scandal has been in the public eye for 18 months.
Obama’s email address uses a pseudonym
Perhaps the biggest surprise to come from the notes is the revelation that President Obama emailed under a pseudonym.
That was revealed in the notes from the FBI’s interview with Huma Abedin. When investigators showed Abedin an email to Clinton with Obama’s secret email address on it, she exclaimed: “How is this not classified?”
Obama has claimed that he did not know that Clinton used an email server.
He and Clinton exchanged 18 emails while she was in office. The White House has refused to allow the documents to be released.
Did Huma Abedin lie to the FBI?
Abedin, Clinton’s closest and longest-serving aide, told the FBI that she did not know while she was at the State Department that Clinton used a private email server.
But that claim is questionable given publicly released emails and statements other witnesses gave the FBI.
Justin Cooper, a Bill Clinton aide who provided tech support on the Clinton server, told investigators that he and Abedin had conversations in early 2009 about Clinton’s server system.
As The Daily Caller has previously reported, Abedin was included on several email chains during her State Department stint in which Clinton’s server was discussed. (RELATED: Clinton Aides Told FBI They Didn’t Know About Hillary’s Server, But Emails Suggest Otherwise)
Notes from Abedin’s April 5 interview read: “Abedin did not know that Clinton had a private server until about a year and a half ago when it became public knowledge and did not recall any discussion about it during the transition.”
Cooper’s interview was conducted after Abedin’s, on June 21.
Cheryl Mills was told of concerns about Clinton’s email system
Pagliano, Clinton’s computer technician, told the FBI that he told Mills of concerns that Clinton’s email setup violated federal records laws.
An unnamed State Department official had asked Pagliano about Clinton’s email use and said they were concerned about Federal Records Acts violations.
“Pagliano then approached Cheryl Mills in her office and relayed [redacted’s] concerns regarding federal records retention and the use of a private email server,” the notes read.
But Mills dismissed the question.
“Pagliano remembers Mills replying that former Secretary of State had done the same thing, to include Colin Powell,” the notes read.
During her own FBI interview, Mills said that she may have had a conversation with Pagliano about the Federal Records Act “but she was not sure.”
FBI’s description of Clinton insider Sidney Blumenthal
The FBI’s notes show that the bureau referred to Clinton’s longtime friend Sidney Blumenthal as an “informal political adviser.”
The notes also suggest that Clinton had a role of some sort in creating a position for Blumenthal at the Clinton Foundation.
The notes say that Blumenthal “does not recall what Hillary Clinton’s role was in defining his role at the Foundation.”
Clinton initially wanted Blumenthal to work for her at the State Department, but the White House blocked the move because of Blumenthal’s anti-Obama tactics during the 2008 primaries.
Allegations of State Department “interference” in email classifications
An official with the State Department told the FBI that State’s under secretary for management, Patrick Kennedy, “pointedly asked” the FBI not to classify an email that concerned counter-terrorism information. (RELATED: Claim: Top State Dept. Official ‘Pointedly Asked’ FBI To Reverse Classification Of Clinton Email)
“Kennedy pointedly asked [redacted] to change the FBI’s classification determination regarding one of Clinton’s emails, which the FBI considered classified,” the report states.
The official also alleged that State’s office of the legal adviser routinely overrode career analysts’ decisions to classify emails.
Ex-Clinton aide was scared of Hillary finding out about her FBI interview
At the end of her December 2015 interview, Clinton State Department aide Anne-Marie Slaughter asked investigators a peculiar question.
She wanted to know if she could tell Clinton and Clinton’s foreign policy adviser, Jake Sullivan, about the interview.
Slaughter said she wanted to do so because she was “concerned” that Clinton and Sullivan would “be upset to learn she spoke with the FBI without telling them.”
Slaughter’s name is redacted in the notes, but her identity can be deduced from other clues in the document.
Clinton deleted 1,000 emails with Gen. Petraeus
One State Department official told investigators that last August, the Office of the Defense Secretary contacted the State Department to say that it had covered 1,000 work-related emails exchanged between Hillary Clinton and Gen. David Petraeus.
That number far surpasses the 10 Clinton-Petraeus emails that were recovered last year. Clinton and Petraeus exchanged those emails in the early months of her State Department tenure.
TheDC could not determine the veracity of the State Department official’s claims since the FBI did not respond to a request for comment.
Asked about the emails State Department spokesman John Kirby told TheDC, “we can’t speculate about records that DOD may have — we can only speak to the records in our possession.”
“As we disclosed last September, the State Department received from the Department of Defense and the State Inspector General several copies of a single email chain between former Secretary Clinton and then-Commander of US Central Command David Petraeus which were not previously in the possession of the Department.”
Official thought it was “not possible” for Pagliano to handle Clinton’s system
A State Department official told the FBI that they did not believe that Bryan Pagliano was capable of managing Clinton’s email system by himself.
The unnamed official said that he did not believe “it was possible for Pagliano to secure the server as well as state servers, which are monitored by a hardened team of full time employees.”
Pagliano was against housing Clinton’s server in her basement
Pagliano told the FBI that since the beginning of his stint as Clinton’s private IT guru, he was against keeping her server in the basement of her Chappaqua, N.Y. home. He would have preferred the “security and reliability” of a data center, he said.