by Mark Angelides
With the news of Reality Winner being charged with accessing and leaking classified documents coming out, many are scouring her Social Media accounts for clues to her background and motives, but few are looking into what is happening with the news site she sent the leaked information to: The Intercept.
Winner sent the Leaked info to the The Intercept, and a little bit of digging shows that it is not just a regular news site. It is more of an activist movement with associated film makers and projects on the go.
When you go to the Donate page, you can choose to not give your money online but rather by cheque, and this is made payable to First Look Media Works.
First Look Media Work is engaged in an ongoing legal battle with the Department of Homeland Security over FOI requests. Check out the back and forth of it all here. Since 2016, there have been missed deadlines, and frequent requests for specific documents regarding affiliations and funding. The final call is due for June 8th. This all may be coincidental, but if we remember that Reality Winner started her job in February (right in the midst of the legal wrangle), is it possible that she was put in position with one specific goal in mind? To either find or plant evidence.
It may just be all fantasy and paranoia, but let’s look at some nuggets and information and then make your own conclusion:
1) First Look Media founder, Pierre Omidyar, has know connections to groups that are notorious for working behind the scenes to subvert the democratic process, here’s a list of some of his major donations:
Partial List of Omidyar’s Donations Since 2004:
First Look Media: $250,000,000
Sunlight Foundation: $20,505,184
Center for Public Integrity: $2,150,000
Open Society Foundation (London): $677,142
Tides Center: $501,000
2) From MRC.org: Omidyar decided to put his money to use creating an entire media empire of his very own from scratch. The new outlet, “First Look Media,” would demonstrate the eBay founder’s ability to promote content online. Two of the first staffers he snatched up for this venture were Greenwald and Laura Poitras, ardent defenders of former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden. Snowden gave them sensitive national security information to release to the public. In fact, Omidyar even launched a portion of his news service, dubbed “The Intercept,” ahead of schedule, “to provide a platform to report on the documents previously provided by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden.”
The whole thing was designed and funded to get hold of NSA documents. Who invests $250 without knowing where the next leak is coming from?
3) The leaked document itself in no way suggests that any damage was done (or even intended to be done) to the results of the election. In fact, it even says that it was spam sent to seven email accounts (three of which may not actually exist), and that it is unknown what the spear-phishing exercise could have possibly been after.
Also, it is not an actual report. It is an analysis put together by a single analyst who neglects to mention where the Russian connection actually comes from.
It may be fantasy or reality, but it is in no way a smoking gun that should be considered seriously.
by Mark Angelides