Why did Hillary Clinton delete her email

Hillary Clinton email affair : FBI publishes investigation files

During her four-year tenure as Secretary of State of the United States, she has traveled around 1.5 million kilometers, has met hundreds of politicians and dignitaries, and was one of the most prominent diplomats on earth - but Hillary Clinton says she cannot remember it with the best will in the world to have ever received an email with particularly sensitive content.

At least that's what Clinton told FBI investigators, according to the agency's recently published documents. It is not only because of such peculiarities that the presidential candidate comes under renewed pressure a good nine weeks before the November 8 election. According to polls, 56 percent of Americans already have a bad opinion of Clinton. In the race for the White House, she is clearly ahead because her rival Donald Trump is even less popular and repels many moderate voters with radical slogans in immigration and minority politics.

The almost 60 pages of FBI material do not contain any decisive new facts, and most of Clinton's statements from a more than three-hour interview by the FBI coincide with what the 68-year-old said publicly. Still, the files are political dynamite.

Did Clinton Lie to the Public?

At least the Americans now know that Clinton told the FBI that they did not know that the “C” in front of certain paragraphs in their emails stood for “Confidential”. It is obvious that this makes the candidate for the most powerful office in the world vulnerable. Either Clinton was completely incompetent or she lied to the FBI and the American public, said Republican party leader Reince Priebus.

The scandal that was uncovered last year revolves around the use of a private mail server by Clinton during her time as Secretary of State from 2009 to 2013. Many e-mails from this time were deleted - political opponents suspect that Clinton, among other things, was having an improper mixing of her ministerial office wanted to cover up work for the Clinton Charitable Foundation. According to media reports, some of the e-mails still in existence suggest that major donors from the foundation had privileged access to the minister.

The FBI accused Clinton of gross negligence in July, but did not recommend a criminal investigation. Clinton said in the FBI interrogation that she used the private server because it was more convenient for her. According to the federal police, hackers apparently tried to crack the server, but failed.

"‘ Oh shit moment "

Clinton told the FBI that she relied on her staff to set up the server. She had learned of confidential information above all from verbal briefings or received them in the form of written documents that she had carefully kept. However, the emails to the minister included planning for US drone attacks on suspected terrorists. This highly sensitive material also ended up on Clinton's private server.

According to the FBI report, the federal police failed in an attempt to track down all of the ex-foreign minister's electronic devices. Some smartphones could not be found. That, too, is likely to further damage Clinton's credibility.

The same goes for the fact that a technician hired by Clinton's staff deleted the ex-minister's mail archive in March of last year - after the scandal became public. The technician, who is not named by the FBI, is said to have received the instruction to delete it from a Clinton employee several months earlier, but this had not yet happened until the scandal was discovered by the "New York Times". The man spoke to the FBI of a "oh shit moment" when he realized that he had not destroyed the mails as directed. Then he implemented the instructions of the Clinton staff, even though the US Congress had ordered the receipt of the mails.

Now new: We give you 4 weeks of Tagesspiegel Plus! To home page