John Solomon and Sara Carter writing at Circa.com have an interesting theory on the demise of Mike Flynn. As they see it, based on documents they have reviewed, Mike Flynn was brought down as payback and the payback was orchestrated by no other than the current acting director of the FBI, Andrew McCabe.
The story goes like this.
Robyn Gritz spent 16 years at the FBI, where she investigated a series of major national security threats. But she says she got crosswise with her supervisors, who pushed her out and yanked her security clearance.
For the first time, she’s speaking out about her situation, warning about how the bureau treats women and the effects of a decade of fighting terrorism.
“Watching everything that’s going on in the world, how I had battled al-Qaida in Iraq, the Taliban … all my experience, all the time I had put in there, I’m selling lipstick and blush,” she said of leaving the FBI.
Courtesy Robyn Gritz
“When you’re fighting terror and you’re seeing buildings come down before you, you’re passionate and you’re emotional, and I think the American people want you to be that way when you’re fighting terror and keeping them safe,” said Gritz.
That passion fueled her to work weeks on end investigating the plane that crashed into the Pentagon on Sept. 11. And for years after, she devoted herself to national security cases that just kept coming. Wall Street Journal reporter Danny Pearl disappeared in Pakistan. A former FBI agent, Robert Levinson, went missing in Iran. And then there were the al-Qaida leaders hiding overseas.
“I wanted to be in the middle of it,” she says. “And I wanted to be able to make a difference.”
For 15 years, Gritz says, she did. Her bosses at the FBI gave her excellent or outstanding performance reviews, she says. But when a reporter made contact with her last year, she was selling cosmetics at Macy’s.
For 12 of those 16 years, Gritz was a fast-burner in the elite counter-terrorism division of the FBI. She worked on a lot of high profile operations, she was prominent in interagency workgroups. She was well known to Mike Flynn when he was head of the Defense Intelligence Agency. Then she went to work for Andrew McCabe and her career not only stalled, it cratered.
But her career took a sudden downward turn after she went to work under McCabe and his leadership team in 2012, resulting in her first negative rating after years of outstanding performance reviews. She filed an EEOC complain inside the FBI against a handful of bureau executives in 2012, alleging her career was being derailed by sexual discrimination.
The FBI referred her for an Office of Professional Responsibility investigation for timecard irregularities. As hostilities rose between the two sides, emails and testimony showed senior FBI officials castigated Gritz for being too “emotional,” having a possible mental illness and sending inappropriate emails.
The FBI concluded there was no discrimination, arguing Gritz was referred to OPR for investigation on June 20, 2012 before she ever filed her EEOC complaint.
But McCabe’s sworn statement offered evidence that actually supported Gritz’s claim of retaliation and discrimination, recounting a conversation on June 19, 2012 in which he authorized the OPR investigation of Gritz after one of his deputies told him Gritz was about to file an EEO complaint, his sworn statement shows.
“I first learned of the issues that led to Ms. Gritz’s current OPR investigation during a telephone call with Deputy Assistant Director (DAD) Jennifer Ley on June 19, 2012,” McCabe testified.
“I recalled that during the course of our conversation DAD Ley mentioned to me that Ms. Gritz had filed or intended to file an EEO complaint against her immediate supervisor.”
The very next day, the FBI initiated the OPR investigation of Gritz, according to evidence in the FBI’s official personnel files. FBI records support McCabe’s version of events, showing Gritz had contacted FBI EEO officials in mid-June before the OPR probe was initiated, then filed her formal complaint a few weeks later. The FBI ‘s official report of investigation on Gritz’s EEO complaint, which absolved the FBI of any discrimination, omitted any mention that McCabe had been aware of the EEO complaint before the bureau filed its OPR action against Gritz.
As the action went into legal channels, Flynn wrote a letter supporting Gritz on DIA stationery. The FBI went to court to try to have Flynn’s letter removed from the personnel action file.
The FBI sought to block Flynn’s support for the agent, asking a federal administrative law judge in May 2014 to keep Flynn and others from becoming a witness in her Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) case, memos obtained by Circa show.
And McCabe not only did not forget that Flynn had helped someone he was hellbent of firing, he made no secret of his dislike for Flynn.
McCabe eventually became the bureau’s No. 2 executive and emerged as a central player in the FBI’s Russia election tampering investigation, putting him in a position to impact the criminal inquiry against Flynn.
Three FBI employees told Circa they personally witnessed McCabe make disparaging remarks about Flynn before and during the time the retired Army general emerged as a figure in the Russia case.
The bureau employees, who spoke only on condition of anonymity for fear of retribution, said they did not know the reason for McCabe’s displeasure with Flynn, but that it made them uncomfortable as the Russia probe began to unfold and pressure built to investigate Flynn. One employee even consulted a private lawyer.
And then Flynn’s downfall began with a leaked story about his private conversation with Russian ambassador Sergey Krislyak and his failure to tell Mike Pence the truth in the matter. We can guess that the FBI was the source of the leak because we know that the FBI reported it to the martyred Sally Yates.
All of this is circumstantial and built on inferences but it is much more substantial than any story alleging collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia. As I said at the top of the page, this is the third of three related stories. The common theme is Andrew McCabe and Mike Flynn. If McCabe did hold enough of a grudge against Flynn to take him out by leaking a classified communications intercept, it is not a stretch to see why the FBI was fond of the Trump dossier. As McCabe’s wife is a player in Virginia Democrat politics and received a seven-figure contribution from the Clinton-McAuliffe gang it isn’t hard to imagine that he was not a Trump supporter. Flynn being named as a close Trump adviser probably stuck in his craw and getting rid of Trump was just a bonus in his grudge with Flynn. It would explain why the FBI doesn’t want to say if it paid Steele $50,000 because the guy who authorized the payment will be the FBI’s Deputy Director at the time, which was McCabe.
Back in January, Chuck Schumer made this observation about Trump’s twitter criticism of the intelligence community:
New Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said Tuesday that President-elect Donald Trump is “being really dumb” by taking on the intelligence community and its assessments on Russia’s cyber activities.
“Let me tell you, you take on the intelligence community, they have six ways from Sunday at getting back at you,” Schumer told MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow.
“So even for a practical, supposedly hard-nosed businessman, he’s being really dumb to do this.”
Seems like the FBI can be officially included in the group of agencies you don’t want to f*** with.