One fact we know for sure is that Nellie Ohr obtained a ham radio during the time she was working for Fusion GPS. What we don’t know for a fact is why. We can, however, speculate. We know the NSA gobbles up phone calls and emails but what they can’t monitor are ham radios. At her age, it’s hard to believe Ohr was taking up the ham radio as a new hobby. A ham radio would allow her to communicate with, oh say, Christopher Steele or any of the co-conspirators in the Trump frame up.
Ohr is a member of Women in International Security, which describes itself as supporting “research projects and policy engagement initiatives on critical international security issues, including the nexus between gender and security.” She has done cybersecurity consulting for Accenture, a politically connected firm, for which she gave a presentation on “Ties Between Government Intelligence Services and Cyber Criminals – Closer Than You Think?”
It is apparent that, between her own professional experience and her marriage to a top DOJ official, she was well aware of the ability of the National Security Agency to intercept and store every communication on the Internet. Did this knowledge have anything to do with her mid-life decision to become a ham radio operator and communicate outside cyberspace?
On May 23, 2016, she received a technician-level amateur radio license. The timing is significant. The presidential campaign was underway and she and her employer, Fusion GPS, were digging for dirt in Russia to use against Trump. Given her cybersecurity knowledge, was Nellie Ohr hoping to use non-cyber short wave communications to hide her participation in that nefarious effort from the NSA?
Recall that, in early 2016, NSA head Admiral Mike Rogers became aware of “ongoing” and “intentional” violations and abuse of FISA surveillance, which he subsequently exposed in testimony before Congress. Thereafter, pressure mounted within the Obama administration to fire him.
Nellie Ohr will be testifying soon to the House Judiciary Committee and I’m sure they will ask her about this, but I don’t expect her to confess. But it will be worth the price to see her squirm.