An audio recording of what is purportedly the voice of famed Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh makes accusations about some of the highest-ranking members of the national security apparatus. Spero News has not verified the authenticity of the recording. The person on that tape said his information from within the FBI came from a source “on the inside,” a “very high level guy” who is “unbelievably accurate and careful.”

Hersh said that the entire narrative of supposed collusion between the Trump campaign and transition team with Russia is actually “a Brennan operation.” The eminent journalist accused Obama-era intelligence officials of misleading the media and Barack Obama. They are former CIA Director John Brennan and former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. Additionally, Hersh referred to the current Director of the National Security Agency, Admiral Michael Rogers. He added, “Trump’s not wrong to think they all f—ing lied about him.”

As for the intelligence officials themselves, Hersh called Brennan an “a—hole,” Clapper as “sort of a better guy but not a rocket scientist,” while Rogers is a “f—ing moron.” As for the motives behind the besmirching of Trump, Hersh said it was simply to keep their jobs and also move on to lucrative positions in the private sector by assuring a victory for the Democrats in the 2016 presidential election. “With Trump they’re gone. You know, they’re done – they’re going to live on their pensions, they’re not going to make it.”

Hersh was also dismissive about some of his colleagues in the media, saying that the establishment media is too accepting of their sources’ information. “I worked at the New York Times for years and they have smart guys but they are totally beholden on sources. If the president or the head of the [garbled] tells them something they actually believe it,” he said. As to the influence of the sources themselves, Hersh said of them: “These guys run the f—ing Times.”

The mysterious murder of Seth Rich

On the tape, Hersh also speaks about the still unsolved murder of Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich (27). Saying that he has a FBI report to go on, he referred to the hacked emails that were released by the WikiLeaks transparency organization that proved to be so embarrassing to the Clinton campaign. He claimed that it was Rich who provided the emails to WikiLeaks. “There are no DNC or Podesta emails that exist beyond May 21 or 22, last email from either one of those groups. What the report says is that some time in late Spring… he makes contact with WikiLeaks, that’s in his computer,” he said. “Anyway, they found what he had done is that he had submitted a series of documents — of emails, of juicy emails, from the DNC.”

Hersh explained in the audio recording that it is unclear how the negotiations proceeded, but he affirmed that the WikiLeaks transparency organization obtained access to a password-protected DropBox where Rich had put the files. “All I know is that he offered a sample, an extensive sample, I’m sure dozens of emails, and said ‘I want money.’ Later, WikiLeaks did get the password, he had a DropBox, a protected DropBox,” he said. They got access to the DropBox.”

Hersh also states that Rich had concerns about something happening to him, but has dismissed theories that the young DNC staffer was murdered on July 10, 2016, for what he knew. Hersh said that there is evidence that Rich fought back against two shooters who approached him in a dangerous DC neighborhood where other holdups had occurred.

However, Hersh said Rich was worried about his future once he released the emails. Local and then federal cyber-cops examined Rich’s computer and emails. “The word was passed, according to the NSA report, he also shared this DropBox with a couple of friends, so that ‘if anything happens to me it’s not going to solve your problems.’” Hersh added, “WikiLeaks got access before he was killed.” The killing has been listed as a botched robbery, even though there were no witnesses and nothing was stolen from the victim.

Among the details attributed to Hersh were that Rich was shot in the back with a .22 caliber pistol. The audio was posted on YouTube anonymously three weeks ago. Spero News cannot confirm that the voice in the audio is indeed Hersh, despite the similarities. We reached out to Hersh for confirmation but have not heard back by the time of publication. With the accurate track record of Wikileaks, though, we decided to provide this information for our readers.

Seth Rich was murdered on July 10 last year just one block near his apartment in Washington, DC with two bullets in his back. The murder was listed as a robbery although there were no witnesses and nothing was believed to have been stolen. Julian Assange, the founder and director of WikiLeaks who operated out of the Ecuadorean embassy in London, has never confirmed that Rich was the person who provided the leaked emails from the DNC based on their repeated policy of not revealing their sources.

However, WikiLeaks provides a reward of $20,000 for information leading to solving Rich's murder. Also, in an interview with Dutch television program Nieuwsuur last August, Assange mentioned Rich's name as an example of sources who go to dangerous lengths to provide information to the leak clearinghouse. The interviewer was familiar with the murder and tried to correct Assange that Rich's death was part of a robbery. Assange told the interviewer that there was no finding yet in the investigation. The reporter then explicitly asked Assange to clarify if Rich was a source but Assange repeated WikiLeak's policy of never revealing sources. The murder remains unsolved.

Rod Wheeler, a former investigator for the family, told Fox News that the FBI was investigating Seth Rich's connection to the DNC email leaks to WikiLeaks. He later retracted the claim, the family asked him to stop speaking with the media, and Fox News retracted the story. Yesterday, he filed a suit against Fox that said they misrepresented his statements about having first-hand knowledge that he knew the FBI was investigating Rich's WikiLeaks connection.

In the first audio recording, Wheeler explains what happened with the Fox News coverage of Rich — and how brother Aaron Rich actively sought to shut down anyone looking into the WikiLeaks connection. Wheeler also said that brother Aaron Rich tried to block him from examining Seth’s computer for evidence. “He said no, he said I have his computer, meaning him,” Wheeler said. “I said, well can I look at it?…He said, what are you looking for? I said anything that could indicate if Seth was having problems with someone. He said no, I already checked it. Don’t worry about it.”

Seymour Hersh won the 1970 Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting for exposing the infamous My Lai Massacre and its coverup during the Vietnam War. He later reported on the mistreatment of detainees at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq by US military personnel. He has also won two National Magazine Awards, as well as other prestigious awards.

Last week, Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC), who leads the Freedom Caucus in the House, said that he intends to "get to the bottom" of the so-called Russian narrative. He asserted that there was indeed a government that interfered with the 2016 election, saying it was the "United States government trying to make sure Hillary Clinton was the next president."



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Spero News editor Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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