Those trying to downplay the revelations about Rice and the unmasking make a mistake
T. Becket Adams:
Never tell a crowd of curious onlookers, "There's nothing to see here."I do not find Rice's denials credible at this point. She has a history of giving misleading statements and this only adds to it. It seems clear that this information was being compiled for political purposes and there is a need for further investigation. It is much too early to dismiss this new information.
Those five words frequently turn idle curiosity into genuine concern, and the speaker is often viewed quickly with distrust.
We're seeing that play out in real-time this week, as a few media personalities have downplayed reports that former national security adviser Susan Rice personally requested that the identities of "masked" Americans in U.S. intelligence reports linked to President Trump's transition team and campaign be "unmasked."
Rice's alleged involvement in the "unmasking" was reported Monday by Bloomberg.
She also reportedly ordered U.S. intelligence agencies to produce "detailed spreadsheets" of phone calls made by Trump and his associates during the election, the Daily Caller reported, citing former U.S. Attorney Joseph diGenova.
Those articles came not too long after Rice said unequivocally in March that she knew "nothing" about reports that the intelligence community had incidentally collected information on Donald Trump's transition team following the Nov. 8 election.
On its own, the "unmasking" of Americans is a newsworthy story deserving of careful and meticulous reporting. The discrepancy between what Rice said she knew, and what was reported by Bloomberg and the Daily Caller, raises further questions about what was legal, ethical, etc.