Worry at NSA that Kushner gave away the store to Israel
By Wayne Madsen
There are increasing worries that Donald Trump’s special adviser and son-in-law, Jared Kushner, specifically requested Top Secret intelligence files to pass gleaned information to Israeli intelligence. WMR has learned from knowledgeable sources that Kushner’s compromise of National Security Agency and allied FIVE EYES partners’ intercepts of foreign leaders led to his losing his temporary access to Top Secret/Special Compartmented Information (SCI).
According to our sources, NSA intelligence analysts became suspicious when Israeli companies specializing in not only gathering signals intelligence (SIGINT) information, but also protecting against such collection, began aggressively marketing their services to particular countries, especially those in Africa.
Kushner has already been accused of passing NSA communications intercept transcripts on key government and business leaders in Saudi Arabia to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MbS). After determining who in the House of Saud and Saudi business community were opposed to his rise to power, MbS singled them out for arrest and torture. In a few cases, MbS’s targets were executed.
NSA fears that not only transcripts of its intercepts of Saudi officials were passed by Kushner to MbS, but also to the Israeli government. This not only compromised targets of NSA’s wide surveillance net, but also the agency’s sensitive sources and methods for collecting such intelligence.
What alarmed NSA officials more than anything else is their observation that Israeli signals intelligence (SIGINT) companies, comprised of former SIGINT officers with Israel’s Unit 8200 communications intercept agency, began aggressively marketing offensive and defensive SIGINT capabilities to other countries. These countries are routine targets for NSA collection efforts. Through the use of the joint NSA-Central Intelligence Agency Special Collection Service (SCS), intercepts of diplomatic, military, and other official communications are provided in either full or abridged transcript form to cleared U.S. policymakers. These are the files that were routinely requested by Kushner for no apparent reason, raising eyebrows within the upper echelon of the National Security Council. One of those who raised concerns about Kushner’s “curiosity” for such information was Lt. General H. R. McMaster, who was recently fired by Trump, largely at the urging of Kushner and his wife, Ivanka Trump. National Security Adviser John Bolton, a pro-Israeli neoconservative, has vowed to fire those who questioned Kushner’s motives and those of his father-in-law in not taking immediate steps to curtail Kushner’s access to such intelligence.
Kushner, who has no intelligence or military experience, specifically requested intercept transcripts on governments that are now on the receiving end of aggressive Israeli marketing efforts. Although Kushner has reported responsibilities for U.S. relations with the Middle East, Mexico, and China, there is no valid reason for him to have requested and read NSA transcripts of intercepted communications of such African leaders as Senegal’s President Macky Sall, Cote d’Ivoire’s President Alassane Ouatarra, Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari, or Gabon’s President Ali Bongo.
Many African countries use low-level forms of encryption, mostly supplied by French firms, that are easy to break. NSA is able to decrypt foreign communications, including those transmitted over Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), using a system code-named BIRDWATCHER, which forwards such coded communications to other NSA systems for code-breaking. However, Israeli firms are now able to sell more sophisticated systems to such governments. What the foreign governments do not realize is that Israeli intelligence has the decryption keys. Upgrading foreign government encryption with Israeli products also makes it that much harder for NSA to decrypt the communications, including e-mail. By providing such information on communication security vulnerabilities to the Israelis, Kushner has caused irreparable harm to U.S. national security. If such a security violation resulted in a criminal indictment, Kushner could be looking at multiple life terms in federal prison.
One such Israeli company that has moved into Africa to the chagrin of NSA and its partners in Britain and Canada is SAFNA, a firm headquartered in Israel’s “intelligence city” of Herzliya, where Unit 8200, the lesser known Unit 8100, and various Mossad operations are located. The company’s president is a Moroccan-born Jew named Didier Sabag, who also runs two Israeli firms based in Hong Kong, Hamsa Ltd. and Orot Ltd., both of which appear to be Israeli intelligence fronts. NSA is concerned that SAFNA will stymie its ability to monitor governments in the Sahel region that are also targets for the Islamic State and Al Qaeda jihadists. Governments courted by SAFNA include Morocco, Guinea-Bissau (a major transshipment point for narcotics from Latin America to North Africa and Europe), Benin, and the Central African Republic.
Another Israeli firm, A.D. Consultants of Nes-Ziona, Israel is marketing communications intercept and security equipment to President Alpha Condé of Guinea. Guinea is the location of mining resources coveted by Kushner’s real estate business partners, the Steinmetz family of Israel. Other African countries receiving full-court presses from A.D. Consultants, include Madagascar, Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Cote d’Ivoire, Cabo Verde, Togo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi, Gabon, Senegal, Equatorial Guinea, Sao Tome and Principe, Rwanda, Nigeria, and Niger.
Other Israeli SIGINT firms are marketing their services in India. A recent visit by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to India cemented growing military and intelligence links between Tel Aviv and Delhi. Similar aggressive Israeli SIGINT marketing is being reported from Azerbaijan, which shares a border with Iran; Angola; Mozambique; Saudi Arabia; Bahrain; and the United Arab Emirates.
The compromise of SIGINT by Kushner followed the revelation that Lt. General Michael Flynn, Trump’s short-lived national security adviser, had a contractual relationship with another large Israeli cyber-warfare firm specializing in hacking computer systems. The firm was NSO Group Technologies, also located in the Herzliya espionage metroplex. Trump—whose presidential campaign’s links to the data mining firm Cambridge Analytica have been established—may also be linked to another Israeli electronic surveillance firm, Black Cube, primarily consisting of ex-Mossad officers. Black Cube cyber-spies were retained to penetrate the email and medical records of Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari, while he was a presidential candidate; and to dig up dirt on Kenyan opposition politicians; Mexican, United Arab Emirates, Moroccan, and Bahraini human rights activists; and women who accused disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein of sexual assault.