"And no sane person believes for a nanosecond that those “lost” communications represent anything other than willful obstruction of justice."Personally, I'd be willing to bet that the reasons the emails were "lost" can be traced to a long lasting gap in bureaucratic cultures. Specifically, the records management people have always focused on paper preservation, and rarely have ranked high in the pecking in bureaucracies. It's taken 20 years for NARA to start to accommodate electronic records, and I suspect they've yet to achieve full integration.
The IT folks, on the other hand, have a culture focused on the future and a bit on the present, but rarely on the past. C.P. Snow in the 1950's had a book entitled "Two Cultures", arguing that science and the humanities didn't talk to each other, and they should. Today's divide between archives and IT is worse.
In the middle of all this are the people who have to implement IT rules and archive requirements--the users. These are the people who leave their passwords at the default, or use admin1234.
Toss in Murphy's Law, and I'll bet there was no willful obstruction of justice.