About That Yahoo Article on Ali Watkins and James Wolfe

Posted originally on the conservative tree house on December 12, 2021 | Sundance | 27 Comments

Several people have emailed asking for opinion on the Yahoo News article [READ HERE] outlining Ali Watkins as a victim of the horrible investigative apparatus that targets journalists who are involved in leaking and denying leaking, “Top Secret, Classified Information” from their narrative engineering positions.  {{Insert Eyeroll Here}}

Having read the lengthy article a few times, there are some interesting aspects and also a lot of nonsense in the grand scheme of things.  The motive for the article appears to be a defense against government investigating journalists, and a sub-sector of one of the intelligence agencies (Customs and Border Patrol) having a semi-rogue actor named Jeffrey Rambo. Ali Watkins was contacted by Rambo in 2017 based on his discovery of her connection to Senate Intelligence Committee Security Director James Wolfe.

You have to read the article [HERE] to see where the author, Jana Winter, is coming from.   Overall, the article is a little weird and defensive, and frames a position that secretive U.S. government agencies should not be conducting surveillance on U.S. journalists.   Much of the article is not too interesting to anyone who is not a journalist. However, there are a few parts worth noting. One paragraph specifically, which I’ll get to.

First… The author Mrs. Jana Winter and Ali Watkins are lying about a very key point.  Watkins claims James Wolfe never leaked any classified information to her, and Jana Winter makes that point repeatedly.  This is a lie, they are liars – [sue me].    James Wolfe did leak classified information to Ali Watkins, who was writing for Buzzfeed at the time, which Watkins then shared with her friends and peers in the media.   One specific classified leak was the Carter Page FISA application, which Wolfe leaked to Watkins in March of 2017.

Second… When Jeffrey Rambo enters the picture to question Watkins, neither of them knew at the time that Watkins was already under FBI investigation.  The timeline is outlined in the original James Wolfe indictment.   After Watkins wrote an article in early April 2017, using the Wolfe and the FISA leak as her anonymous source, she became a target for investigation.

Watkins was notified on February 13, 2018 about her electronic communication being retrieved by the DOJ/FBI per a previous court order.  One set of her phone records that were used in evidence covered a period from Feb 1 to July 31, 2017.  [LETTER HERE]

Third…  We know from the indictment itself the investigation of James Wolfe was completed by December 15, 2017, when he was fired from his position.  Wolfe’s indictment did not surface for another six months – until June 08, 2018.   Wolfe was indicted for lying to the FBI investigators.  However, Wolfe was not indicted for leaking the FISA application despite the FBI having direct evidence of the leak; which was then sworn and affirmed in Wolfe’s December 2018 sentencing memo when the U.S. Attorney Office in DC requested an upward departure for longer term sentencing, specifically because Wolfe leaked top secret classified information.  He leaked the FISA application.

Wolfe leaked the Carter Page FISA application to journalist Ali Watkins.   Despite Wolfe’s lawyer denials; and despite Ali Watkins denials; and despite Yahoo denials; and despite The Washington Post denials; and despite the New York Times denials; Wolfe DID leak the FISA application.

The reason the media needs to deny the leak is because these same media outlets were falsely reporting everything about the FISA application.  The biggest names in U.S. media (WaPo and NYT) had the full and unredacted FISA application in March of 2017, and spent the next 15 months lying about the content to support the fraudulent Trump-Russia narrative.   Heck, Ali Watkins was likely hired by the New York Times -from Buzzfeed- specifically because she had the FISA application.

[SIDEBAR – James Wolfe did not respond to Yahoo News about their latest article on Ali Watkins.  Smartly he’s keeping his mouth shut, because he was saved from having to face repercussions from the classified information leak by a 2018 DC cover-up operation organized by Andrew Weissmann and the Robert Mueller special counsel team.]

The media had the full and unredacted FISA application in March 2017, two months before the Robert Mueller special counsel even started.  The FISA application was made public by the special counsel on July 21, 2018, partly because the media already had the FISA in circulation.   The media had the application for sixteen months before it was made public, by the special counsel, one month after James Wolfe was indicted.

The last interesting point I would note is this paragraph in the Yahoo article:

“On June 12, 2018, just a week after Wolfe was indictedthe Washington Post published an article about Rambo’s meeting with Watkins, identifying him by his real name. Rambo, who never realized she had learned his name, was blindsided.

Rambo, the article reported, had told Watkins that “the administration was eager to investigate journalists and learn the identity of their confidential sources to stanch leaks of classified information.

It’s obvious now that Ali Watkins was the source for that Washington Post article.  Media friends in the Trump-Russia conspiracy narrative helping each other.

Obviously Watkins knew in December 2017 that her source in the SSCI was busted.  Then Watkins finds out in February 2018 her records with Wolfe were in the hands of the FBI/DOJ.  Watkins then finds out in June 2018 that Wolfe was indicted.  Watkins then reaches out for help to her team at New York Times and Washington Post allies.

The wagon-circling media quickly throw the dirt of Jeffrey Rambo into the mix as chaff and countermeasures.  A month later their fellow Lawfare travelers in the Mueller special counsel then release the FISA application to the public; more chaff and countermeasures.  A never before seen, top secret classified FISA application, illegally in the hands of the media for the past 16 months, was now…. ipso facto… lawful to possess.

Funny how that happens.

The sequence is critical:

1.  Adam Waldman text messages. (release date Feb 9, 2018)

2. Justice Dept. Letter to journalist Ali Watkins (release date Feb 13, 2018)


3.  James Wolfe indictment (release date June 8, 2018)

4.  FISC / Senate Judiciary Letter (public release April, 2020 – event date July 12, 2018) The letter from DOJ-NSD (Mueller Special Proseuctors) to the FISC is important.

5.  Carter Page FISA application (release date July 21, 2018)  Only need the first application section. 83 pages of original application.

6.  Government Sentencing Wolfe Case memo and recommendation for upward departure and/or variance. Filed December 11, 2018

7.  Govt. Reply to Defendant (Wolfe) sentencing memo (date Dec 14, 2018)  Govt. Exhibit #13 (two page attestation is critical).


July 27, 2018,  – Wall Street Journal  – Wolfe lawyers threaten SSCI subpoenas.


Dec 11, 2018 – Politico – Senators seek Leniency –

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