Some interesting and curious revelations concerning bot “leaker” Jack and “journalist” Gershkovich. I will start with Jack Teixeira.
The U.S. Government is doing its dirty best to portray Teixeira as an aspiring mass murderer. Count me suspicious of this allegation:
New revelations from the court filings have raised more questions about why Teixeira had such a high-security clearance and access to some of the nation’s most classified secrets.
Prosecutors wrote that Teixeira, who owned multiple guns, repeatedly had “detailed and troubling discussions about violence and murder” on the social media platform Discord, where authorities say he shared the documents.
In February, he told another person that he was tempted to make a minivan into an “assassination van,” prosecutors wrote.
They said he may still have material that hasn’t been released, which could be of “tremendous value to hostile nation states that could offer him safe harbour and attempt to facilitate his escape from the United States.”
So, the U.S. Government wants you to believe that a member of the U.S. military who owns guns is evidence of a disturbed person. Last I checked, the men and women in the military are taught to use firearms because they may be called upon to use those guns to kill our “enemies.” That is really bizarre.
I continue to see news articles trickling out that are announcing the discovery on social media of more leaked documents posted by Teixeira. Where are they? Beyond the initial batch released, I have not seen any of these. If they really exist, they were posted in such obscure sites that they failed to attract any public attention. This supports the initial claim by some in Jack’s chat group that he was just showing off and had no nefarious purpose in mind.
Since Teixeira was arrested we have learned that GCHQ, the U.K.’s equivalent of the U.S. NSA, identified the leaked documents on the gamer chat group before the intel became public. I am having trouble finding that report, but it alleged that GCHQ flagged this to its U.S. counter parts. If that is true, why didn’t the U.S. intelligence agencies take steps to shut those sites down and prevent the publication of those leaks. This further reinforces my belief that this was a controlled leak and that Teixeira, who apparently did post this classified material to the chat group, became a convenient scapegoat.
To that point, the fact that Bellingcat, an organization with demonstrable ties to British and U.S. intelligence according to the Grayzone, played the critical role in identifying Teixeira and making sure that information found its way into public media reinforces in my mind that this was an intel op.
Teixeira is being charged with espionage. Bollocks! At most he should be charged with mishandling classified information. There is zero evidence so far that he was publishing these documents with the intent of sharing them with a foreign intelligence agency.
What about Evan Gershkovich. The Russians are charging him with espionage. In light of information released since he was arrested, it appears he was used, unwittingly, by CIA or the U.S. Defense Attache officers to collect information that he intended to publish in the Wall Street Journal. I remain convinced that Gershkovich is a naive, gullible reporter who had no idea that any effort on his part to gather information to report on the Russian defense industry would be viewed legitimately by the Russians as espionage.
Why do I say this? Reports that I have read reveal he made regular visits to the U.S. Embassy in Moscow. A real spy would not do something so stupid, especially in Russia. Gershkovich was incredibly naive in my view. He failed to understand that going to the U.S. Embassy would bring him unwelcome attention from Russian security services. I am sure that in his mind, routine chats with U.S. “diplomats” was part of his job as a reporter.
I am pretty confident that CIA officers assigned to U.S. Embassy Moscow would not reveal their true identities or employment with the CIA to Gershkovich. He may have suspected that some of his interlocutors had intel ties, but it is equally plausible that he really believed he was meeting with diplomats and military officials in order to get their views on events in Ukraine and the implications for those on the political situation in Russia that he could use in his articles for the WSJ.
Regardless of his intent, the Russians appear to have a strong case to charge him with espionage. Not a good place for Gershkovich.