Secret Documents Prove Obama’s Disgraced US Attorney General Eric Holder Is Full Of Shit – Hid Department’s Documents On Operations That Armed Criminals And Mexican Drug Cartels

June 7, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – With the help of a mole, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) has turned the tables on Attorney General Eric Holder.

Issa has long been exasperated with Holder, claiming that the Department of Justice (DOJ) has been withholding information on a controversial gun-running operation. But through an anonymous source, Issa has obtained information about the initiative that is under a federal court-ordered seal.

Giving such information out is a federal crime, raising the question of whether the Justice Department will seek to prosecute what Republicans are calling a whistleblower.

Issa has asked the DOJ for the documents — wiretap applications it used in the botched federal gun-tracking Operation Fast and Furious — for months. The California lawmaker has taken preliminary steps to move contempt-of-Congress citations against Holder, but it remains unclear if GOP leaders support that move. This new controversy could help Issa attract more Republican support for a contempt-of-Congress resolution.

If Holder does launch an investigation into where the leak originated, the powerful Republican could paint the move as an attempt by the DOJ to hide the documents’ contents. It would also raise the possibility that DOJ investigators will seek information from Issa, who has been trying to determine who approved the “gun-walking” tactics used in Fast and Furious along the U.S.-Mexico border.

On the other hand, not launching a probe would mean turning a blind eye to a criminal breach and could lead Issa’s source and others to reveal other information sealed by a judge.

Issa told Fox News on Wednesday that he has no intention of shining the light on his source: “We’re not going to make our whistleblower available. That’s been one of the most sensitive areas, because some of the early whistleblowers are already feeling retribution. They’re being treated horribly.”

Asked earlier this week where he got the wiretap applications, Issa told The Hill, “You can ask, but you should have no expectation of an answer. By the way, if I asked you where you got yours, would you give me your sources?”

Of course, there is some political risk for Issa. The Obama administration could point out that he is stonewalling federal authorities after complaining throughout this Congress of being stonewalled by DOJ.

As the lead congressional investigator of Fast and Furious, Issa says the documents show top-ranking DOJ officials signing off on the condemned “gun-walking” tactics used in the failed operation. Senior DOJ officials have repeatedly denied that they approved the botched initiative.

The documents have not been made public, and Issa has apparently broken no laws by being given the information.

Regardless, the DOJ is not pleased.

“Chairman Issa’s letter makes clear that sealed court documents relating to pending federal prosecutions being handled by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of California have been disclosed to the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform in violation of law,” wrote Deputy Attorney General James Cole to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and Issa this week.

“This is of great concern to us,” the letter added.

A spokesman for the DOJ declined to comment about whether it was planning to launch an investigation into the leak.

Democrats say that Issa is exaggerating what he has. Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), the ranking member on Issa’s panel, reiterated this week that top-ranking DOJ officials didn’t personally review any of the six wiretap applications related to Fast and Furious. Issa sent Cummings the information he received from his source.

In the past, the DOJ has justified not turning over the wiretap applications to Issa by saying that doing so could jeopardize the current criminal cases it is prosecuting.

Two former prosecutors for the DOJ, who were not familiar with the details of this article, independently told The Hill that defense lawyers could use an instance of documents being leaked in violation of a court-ordered seal to justify seeking a mistrial.

It is unlikely that the DOJ, if it does investigate the leak, will have grounds to go after Issa for accepting the documents. In past instances of court-ordered seals being broken, it is the actual breaker of the seal who is held responsible, which in this case could mean criminal contempt proceedings and possible jail time.

The battle between Issa and the DOJ has escalated over the past month, with House Republican leaders writing a letter to Holder asking him to hand over information about who was responsible for Fast and Furious. The letter also asked whether the DOJ misled Congress on when officials, including Holder, became aware of the program.

Issa is set to square off against Holder on Thursday when the attorney general is scheduled to appear before the House Judiciary Committee. The Republican lawmaker will appear on a panel to discuss oversight of the DOJ.

Under the now-defunct Fast and Furious initiative, agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, which is under the DOJ, authorized the sale of firearms to known and suspected straw purchasers for Mexican drug cartels, but lost track of many of the weapons. Some of those guns might have contributed to the December 2010 shooting death of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry.

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Dozens Of Boxes Of Secret US Government Files Go Missing At National Archives And Records Administration

May 2, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – The National Archives and Records Administration has lost track of dozens of boxes of confidential and secret government files at its records center just outside of Washington, the latest in a series of such incidents spanning more than a decade.

The missing classified materials include four boxes of top-secret restricted files from the Office of the Secretary of Defense as well as records from several U.S. Navy offices, documents obtained by The Washington Times show.

The problems came to light after a three-year investigation by the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) Office of Inspector General. While the investigation ended last year, officials recently provided a copy of the report on their findings in response to a Freedom of Information Act request.

It’s not the first time the inspector general’s office has raised concerns about missing files at the Washington National Records Center. According to the report, the office conducted previous inventories of classified materials in 1998 and 2004, concluding that boxes were missing during both of those searches.

“According to those staffers that can recall, minimal corrective actions were taken,” the inspector general’s office noted in the report on its most recent investigation.

NARA officials say they cooperated with investigators and insist there is no indication that any of the boxes were stolen. Instead, they blame the problems on “bad data” for a tiny fraction of the millions of boxes stored in the Washington National Records Center, where 250,000 boxes enter the Suitland facility each year.

Joe Newman, a spokesman for the nonpartisan watchdog group Project on Government Oversight (POGO), said the inspector general’s report raised troubling but not unexpected questions.

“While it’s troubling that there are boxes of top-secret and confidential materials missing, it’s not entirely unexpected considering the sheer volume of data the National Archives and Records Center is responsible for storing and protecting,” he said.

“The report raises some issues of careless handling and filing of materials that certainly deserve the attention of the administration. However, these problems also raise bigger questions of how recent budget cuts and staffing reductions have affected the ability of the National Archives to do its job effectively.”

NARA, the nation’s official record keeper, does not own the facility where the records are stored, instead leasing the property from the General Services Administration. Likewise, the boxes, which are stored in row after row of high shelves in rooms twice the size of football fields at the facility, do not belong to NARA, either. The agency acts as the custodian and stores the boxes temporarily until they’re either destroyed or turned over for permanent placement in the National Archives.

William J. Bosanko, appointed last year as NARA’s Executive For Agency Services, said officials are continuing what he called a “very aggressive search” for boxes reported missing in the inspector general’s investigation.

Mr. Bosanko said one measure officials think will result in better tracking is the bar coding of boxes as they come in and out of the records center. Previously, he said, paper tracking slips, which could detach from boxes and fall off shelves, could result in a box reported as missing when it is still in the records center.

Another problem he cited is the fact that agencies sometimes have asked for boxes to be returned, only to later send them back to NARA in different boxes with different so-called “accession numbers,” which are used to track the materials.

In addition, Mr. Bosanko said, tracking information can be lost as boxes age or sustain damage. He said the records center is an aging building that’s had troubles with leaks over the years, as well as sustaining damage from an earthquake last year. Officials are working to replace the building, he said.

In an interview, Paul Brachfeld, NARA’s inspector general, said the problems span years and highlight more than just record-keeping issues.

After years of what he called “chronic disregard” about the situation at NARA, Mr. Brachfeld said, “I do believe finally they are taking my recommendations to heart.”

He said it’s too early to say whether problems will surface in future audits and investigations. Records show that a similar investigation had been under way reviewing unclassified materials held at the Suitland facility.

“It’s a process that’s going to have to be played out,” he said.

Congress was on notice about the missing records months ago. In a semiannual report to Congress last year, the inspector general’s office told lawmakers that 80 boxes of top-secret and restricted materials were missing.

“This investigation was closed subject to continuing updates regarding the recovery of remaining material,” the inspector general told Congress.

The agencies listed in the report were the Office of the Secretary of Defense, the U.S. Army Chief of Staff, the Commerce Department’s Bureau of Export Administration, the Atomic Energy Commission, the Department of Energy, the National Imagery and Mapping Agency as well as four components of the U.S. Navy. Each of the agencies was notified. The report did not say when the records were compiled.

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