The ‘unmasking’ scandal is heating up with each passing day. On Wednesday, The Gateway Pundit reported United Nations Ambassador Samantha Power ‘unmasked’ hundreds of individuals during the final year of the Obama administration. Now there are new calls for the Department of Justice to launch a criminal investigation into Obama’s aides in relation to the ‘unmasking’ scandal.
The calls came as House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes identified a fourth Obama national security official as a “person of interest” who improperly “unmasked” Trump officials and leaked the information to the news media.
In a letter Tuesday to the National Security Agency (NSA), the California Republican requested the agency report on improper “unmasking” requests made by Ben Rhodes, former President Barack Obama’s deputy national security advisor for strategic communications, according to Circa. As such, he was the number two ranking official on the National Security Council (NSC).
Rhodes’ name is now added to three other top Obama national security officials who are accused of improperly requesting the identities of Trump officials whose phone calls were intercepted by the NSA. Those names were later leaked to the media.
The three individuals are Susan Rice, Obama’s national security advisor, former CIA Director John Brennan and former U.N. Ambassador Samantha Power.
Unmasking or identifying U.S. citizens who are communicating with foreign governments or foreign principals for genuine intelligence purposes is legal, but obtaining the identity of U.S. citizens for partisan political purposes is not permitted under any circumstances. The leaking of “unmasked” U.S. citizens to the news media is unlawful.
Former U.S. Attorney Joseph DiGenova told TheDCNF Wednesday that now is the time for the Justice Department to launch an official criminal investigation. The latest revelation about Rhodes “demands a federal criminal investigation with a grand jury and subpoenas.”
“It is obvious that Obama, Brennan, Rice, Power and Rhodes were involved in massive — underscore massive — unmasking of Trump people, friends and associates after Trump’s nomination and after the election,” DiGenova said.
The Gateway Pundit previously reported Former United Nations Ambassador Samantha Power’s involvement in the unmasking is raising red flags over what insiders view was an attempt by the Obama administration to undermine President Trump and his team, Washington Free Beacon reports.
Washington Free Beacon reported:
Power appears to be central to efforts by top Obama administration officials to identify individuals named in classified intelligence community reports related to Trump and his presidential transition team, according to multiple sources.
The names of Trump allies in the raw intelligence reports were leaked to the press in what many in Congress and the current administration claim is an attempt by Obama allies and former officials to damage the White House.
The House Intelligence Committee, which is spearheading the investigation into these efforts, has issued subpoenas for Power and other top Obama administration figures, including former national security adviser Susan Rice, as part of congressional efforts to determine the source of these leaks.
Power’s role in this unmasking effort is believed to be particularly questionable given her position as a the U.N. ambassador, a post that does not typically require such sensitive unmasking activities, according to former U.S. officials and other sources familiar with the matter.
“Unmasking is not a regular occurrence—absolutely not a weekly habit. It is rare, even at the National Security Council, and ought to be rarer still for a U.N. ambassador,” according to one former senior U.S. official who spoke to the Washington Free Beacon.
“The subpoena for Power suggests just how pervasive the Obama administration’s spying on Americans actually was,” said one veteran GOP political operative who has been briefed on the matter by senior Congressional intelligence officials. “The U.N. ambassador has absolutely no business calling for the quantity and quality of the intelligence that Power seems to have been asking for.”
When asked why Power would need to be involved in such gathering of classified intelligence, the source said, “That’s just not the sort of thing that she should have been concerned about, unless she was playing the role of political operative with the help of the intelligence community.”