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Archive for June 6th, 2013

Column: Focus Should be on Attorney General Holder’s Mediocre Performance

Atty. Gen. Eric Holder Jr.

By David Ignatius 
The Washington Post

People are looking for the wrong “scandal” about Attorney General Eric Holder.

The problem with Holder is the plain fact that, in the judgment of a wide range of legal colleagues, he has been a mediocre attorney general.

Holder’s mistakes in management and judgment are clear in the current controversy about leak investigations. He was silent as zealous prosecutors overrode the Justice Department’s guidelines for subpoenaing reporters; he recused himself from the case, but bizarrely doesn’t seem to have kept a written record of the recusal; and he failed utterly to anticipate the political flap that erupted when Justice informed the Associated Press that more than 20 of its phones had been tapped.

To read more click here.

 

Homeland Security Agent Hit by Car, Shoots Fleeing Driver

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Homeland Security special agent assisting in a multi-agency narcotics operation in Washington state was hit by a car and then shot the fleeing driver, The News Tribune reports.

The suspect’s condition was unknown at the time, but the agent suffered a minor injury and is expected to fully recover, The News Tribune wrote.

The shooting happened in Lakewood about 8 p.m. Wednesday.

Involved in the investigation were ICE, Homeland Security, DEA, Lakewood Police Special Operations Unit, and ATF.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST


FBI Investigates California State Senator over Water Board Contract That Helped Brother

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

An FBI investigation of a California state senator involves legislation he introduced for a water district that his brother was hired to oversee, the Associated Press reports.

Two people told the AP they were questioned by the FBI about Sen. Ron Calderon’s water board legislation and its connections with his brother, Tom Calderon.

The contract for the Central Basin Municipal Water District went to a firm where Tom Calderon is a consultant.

Neither brother would comment on the investigation.

FBI Used Fake Underground Newspapers to Neutralize Anti-War Sentiments in ’60s, ’70s

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The FBI produced fake newspapers in the 1960s and ’70s to combat anti-war sentiment, the Austin Chronicle reports.

The newspapers, which were recently discovered in a cache of declassified documents, included a campus newspaper at Indiana University Bloomington, called the Rational Observer.

“[They are] one of the ‘smoking guns’ that activists who produced the underground press in the Sixties and Seventies could little have imagined: right-wing campus papers produced by the FBI,” said James Danky, instructor at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Wisconsin, and author of Undergrounds, a librarian’s catalog of alternative press publications. “These papers’ faltering efforts … speak to the cultural and political distance between the forces of repression led by J. Edgar Hoover and the seismic changes in America’s social fabric.”

Part of the point was to expose the identities of so-called leftists in the newspapers.

“The purpose of this program is to expose, disrupt and otherwise neutralize the activities of this group and persons connected with it.,” a letter to Domestic Intelligence Director William C. Sullivan said. “It is hoped that with this new program their violent and illegal activities may be reduced if not curtailed.”

FBI Begins to Track Hate Crimes Against Followers of the Sikh Religion

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com 

The FBI will begin tracking crimes against Sikhs as part of its reporting system, the Associated Press reports.

The decision follows recent attacks on followers of the Sikh religion, including the shooting deaths of six worshippers in Wisconsin in August.

Followers of the religion have been pressing the FBI to include Sikhs in the tracking of hate crimes.

About 10% of Sikh adults have been physically assaulted because of their religious beliefs, a coalition of Sikhs told the FBI.

ATF Agent Jay Dobyns Who Went Undercover With Hells Angels To Get Day in Court Against the Bosses

By Allan Lengel
ticklethwire.com

Jay Dobyns, who has become a controversial agent at ATF, is finally getting his day in court.

Trial begins in the U.S. Court of Federal on Monday addressing claims in his lawsuit of  breach of contract.

Dobyns claims the agency failed to abide by a 2007 written contract to protect him and his wife and two children against death threats from the Hells Angels. He worked undercover, posing as a Hells Angels, which didn’t go over too big when the gang found out.

The suit, which will be heard in U.S. Court of Federal Claims, also says the agency failed to stop subjecting him to a hostile work environment for complaining about his safety.

Dobyns posted this on his blog:

Beginning on Monday, June 10, 2013, at 10:00 a.m., my nine-year war becomes official in a United States Courthouse. It has been a long, hard, brutal and bloody fight to get to the point where the truth can be told. The trial will start in Arizona and end in Washington, D.C. in early August.

I have never strayed from my respect and admiration for every ATF agent or supervisor who places themselves in the path of danger or makes the tough, real-time decisions on how we attack violent criminals.

My disgust is with those who are corrupted by the power of their titles and then use their influence to damage my ATF and hurt those who try to do it right.

Some very authoritative people in our government have done everything within their power to paint me as a greedy, ungrateful, malcontent. Decide for yourself how you feel about me but know that any public or private opinion I have expressed has always, and only, been critical of corruption in the White House, DOJ and ATF – not against my peers who do a job that no one else wants.

I do not enjoy the position I am in. In a time when it is very easy to hate ATF, I love ATF, always have. Those who think that all of ATF is dirty are entitled to their opinions but I will never fully agree and will openly defend my position. In our purest sense we don’t go after guns. We go after violent criminals who use guns, bombs, and arson to commit crimes like murder, rape, drug dealing, home invasion, murder-for-hire and intimidation.

On Monday I intend begin proving in a court of law what has been known from both inside and out at ATF, DOJ and the Administration for a very long time – that ATF ignored facts, evidence and the official conclusions of investigators and tried real hard to frame me as a murderer and arsonist. In my case ATF became the opposite of what America expects, demands and is due from a law enforcement agency.

Read more »