Case Not Closed: Questions Remain on DHS Ammo Purchases (Video)

Although  we’re told that nothing unusual is going on,  DHS’s extraordinary level of ammunition purchases in recent months continues to cause consternation and concern among many on the right.

Fox News tried to separate fact from fiction in this recent report that purports DHS has made even larger ammo purchases in past (Obama) years, although the numbers are substantially lower than the 1.6 billion rounds we’ve been hearing about.

Senator Tom Coburn concluded that this is much ado about nothing.

In a Forbes oped, Ralph Benko wrote, 1.6 Billion Rounds Of Ammo For Homeland Security? It’s Time For A National Conversation:

It confirmed that the Department of Homeland Security has issued an open purchase order for 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition.  As reported elsewhere, some of this purchase order is for hollow-point rounds, forbidden by international law for use in war, along with a frightening amount specialized for snipers. Also reported elsewhere, at the height of the Iraq War the Army was expending less than 6 million rounds a month.  Therefore 1.6 billion rounds would be enough to sustain a hot war for 20+ years.  In America. Add to this perplexing outré purchase of ammo, DHS now is showing off its acquisition of heavily armored personnel carriers, repatriated from the Iraqi and Afghani theaters of operation.

***
It is utterly inconceivable that Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano is planning a coup d’etat against President Obama, and the Congress, to install herself as Supreme Ruler of the United States of America.  There, however, are real signs that the Department bureaucrats are running amok.  About 20 years ago this columnist worked, for two years, in the U.S. Department of Energy’s general counsel’s office in its procurement and finance division.  And is wise to the ways.   The answer to “why would DHS need such a vehicle?” almost certainly is this:  it’s a cool toy and these (reportedly) million dollar toys are being recycled, without much of a impact on the DHS budget.  So… why not?

Investors Business Daily reported that fifteen members of Congress have written a letter to the Department of Homeland Security demanding to know what’s going on.

Freshman California Republican Doug LaMalfa and 14 of his House colleagues, who signed on to his March 5 letter, are asking the Department of Homeland Security to explain why it is buying 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition of various calibers. They aren’t happy with explanations provided so far in the press by lower-level officials, answers meant to debunk “unfounded” concerns.

As we have noted, DHS has been buying lots of ammo, enough by one calculation to fight the equivalent of a 24-year Iraqi War.

Peggy Dixon, spokeswoman for the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Glynco, Ga., told the Associated Press that the training center and others like it run by the Homeland Security Department use as many as 15 million rounds every year, mostly on shooting ranges and in training exercises.

The massive purchases are said to be spread out over five years and due simply to the best practice of saving money by buying in bulk what comes down to five rounds of ammo for every man, woman and child on the U.S. That’s a lot of practice and training.

But Richard Mason, a former  told reporters with WHPTV News in Pennsylvania recently the hollow-point bullets being purchased by DHS are not generally used for training because they are more expensive than standard firing range rounds .

“We never trained with hollow points, we didn’t even see hollow points my entire 4-1/2 years in the Marine Corps,” Mason said.

Homeland Security has also acquired a number of Mine Resistant Armored Protection (MRAP) vehicles which have been retrofitted for possible service on the streets of the U.S.

They were formerly used for counterinsurgency in Iraq. These vehicles are specifically designed to resist mines and ambush attacks.

As we noted in a recent editorial, DHS is also seeking to acquire 7,000 5.56-by-45-millimeter NATO “personal defense weapons” — also known as “assault weapons” when owned by civilians.

If there are plausible explanations for all this, some congressmen would like to hear them.

Maybe DHS can answer Congress’ questions in a series of bullet points.

At CPAC a little over a week ago, Luke Rudkowski of We Are Change, asked Congressman Timothy Huelscamp about the large ammunition purchases made by the DHS. Huelscamp said that the Regime refuses to “let us know what’s going on.” (start at 1:12):

Fox News  reported that local law enforcement agencies across the country are facing an ammo shortage, as gun owners across the nation stock up on firearms and bullets.

Meanwhile, according to CNSNews.com, Rep. Timothy Huelskamp, R-Kan., said he still hasn’t heard back from the Department of Homeland Security on why it’s buying 1.6 billion rounds.

The Homeland Security Department, though, has said it needs the bullets for law enforcement agents in training and on duty.

Published federal notices about the ammo buy have agitated conspiracy theorists since the fall. The government’s explanation is much less sinister.

The Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Glynco, Ga., and others like it run by DHS use up to 15 million rounds a year, mostly on shooting ranges and in training exercises.

More than 90 federal agencies and 70,000 agents and officers used the department’s training center last year.

The rest of the 1.6 billion rounds of ammunition would be purchased by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the federal government’s second largest criminal investigative agency.

Pentagon Halts Production of Drone Cyberwarfare Medal

drone_medal

The Pentagon has stopped production of the Distinguished Warfare Medal, nicknamed the Drone Strike Medal or Drone Cyberwarfare Medal, after a barrage of criticism and complaints from veterans and lawmakers.

Via Fox News:

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has ordered a review of the Distinguished Warfare Medal, which was to be awarded to troops who operate drones and use other technological skills to fight America’s wars from afar. Announcement of the review is expected at a Pentagon news conference later Tuesday.

Lawmakers and veterans groups have complained that although troops can get the new medal for work far from the battlefield, it has been ranked above medals for those who served on the front line in harm’s way, such as the Purple Heart given to wounded troops.

Kudos to Chuck Hagel for listening to the concerns veterans had about this medal.

By the way, there is a petition posted on the White House website asking the administration to lower the precedence of the Distinguished Warfare Medal that I would urge you to sign.

When I posted my story about the medal, yesterday, the petition had 81,790 signatures with 18,210 more to go to reach 100,000 before the March 16 deadline.

When I refreshed the page, it had 81,786 signatures.

I refreshed again, and it was 81,783. Last night, in bed, I checked again, and it was down about 20 more.

As of right now, the number is 81,633.

Is someone from the White House going through and removing duplicates, and fake names? Would they have been doing that at 2:00 a.m. Eastern, last night? Does it seem just a little weird and petty that someone would be up late at night removing names from this petition on an issue veterans feel so strongly about?

UPDATE:

Fifty minutes later, the number stands at 81,617.

UPDATE II:

Oh, NEVERMIND… I was reading the numbers backwards! DERP.

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Why Didn’t the Turkish Consul Warn Ambassador Stevens About the Amassing Jihadis Outside the Consulate on the Night of 9/11?

Turkish PM Tayyip Erdoğan and Barack Obama  (Photo: Cihan)

Clare Lopez is an intelligence expert with a focus on the Middle East, national defense and counterterrorism. She served for 25 years as an operations officer with the CIA and now writes for RadicalIslam.org. I’ve been linking to her reports not only because they’re intelligent and informative but in some cases, like this one - breaking news. I don’t know of anyone else who’s noticed that Turkish Consul General Ali Sait Akin, who had been  meeting with Ambassador Stevens the evening of the attack, was able to leave the consulate without incident even though the area outside the compound was swarming with jihadis setting up checkpoints.

If reporting from the Washington Times is accurate, it looks like the Turkish Consul General Ali Sait Akin was in on the plot to attack the U.S. mission in Benghazi. According to an October 27, 2012 report, Libyan witnesses from the Benghazi neighborhood where the U.S. compound was located told reporters from the Associated Press (AP) that “150 bearded gunmen, some wearing the Afghan-style tunics favored by Islamic militants began sealing off the streets” leading to the facility “around nightfall.”

The Department of State “Background Briefing on Libya,” provided by telephone to reporters on October 9, 2012 states that Ambassador Christopher Stevens held his last meeting of the day on September 11 with the Turkish diplomat from 7:30pm to 8:30pm and then escorted him out to the compound gate to bid farewell. At that point, the briefing states, “Everything is calm at 8:30 p.m. There’s nothing unusual.”

But the AP witnesses said that, “The neighbors all described the militants setting up checkpoints around the compound at about 8 p.m.” The checkpoints were described as being manned by bearded jihadis in pickup trucks mounted with heavy machine guns and bearing the logo of the Al-Qaeda terror franchise, Ansar al-Shariah.

That means that the Turkish Consul General would have had to pass out through the blockade as he departed the American compound and left the area. There is no record that he phoned a warning to his American colleague, the one he’d just had dinner with, Ambassador Stevens. Given the description of the blockade around the American compound and of the jihadis and their trucks that were manning it, it seems unlikely that the he somehow just failed to notice. “[N]o one could get out or in,” according to one neighbor interviewed by the AP.

Except for the Turkish Consul General, it would appear.

Keep reading. The implication here is the Turkish government is at least somewhat complicit in this attack.

And Obama, it should be noted, describes the Turkish Prime Minister Erdoğan as one of the five foreign leaders with whom he is most friendly.

Michael Rubin of Commentary made note of the oddity, last July:

Given Erdoğan’s anti-American and anti-Semitic rants, and his repeated support for not only Hamas terrorists, but also an Al Qaeda financier, perhaps it is time for Obama to describe why he embraces Erdoğan above most others.

Yes, indeed.

Doug Ross has more on this story: FAST AND FURIOUS IN BENGHAZI: Timing of Attack Hints at Double-Cross of White House Gun-Running Operation by Turkey:

What was the subject of the discussion between Stevens and Akin? Malta Today offers some context that hints at some strong possibilities.

A Libyan-flagged vessel which last year was used by a Malta-based humanitarian organisation in supplying a lifeline to rebels in Misurata, has been implicated in a covert US arms smuggling operation to Syrian freedom fighters, which may also be linked to murdered US ambassador Chris Stevens in Benghazi last month.

The ship ‘Al Entisar’ which was chartered last year by I-Go Aid Libya, then run by businessman Mario Debono, has been reported to be linked to last September’s attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi.

A Fox News investigation revealed that shipping records confirmed that the Al Entisar entered the Turkish port of Iskenderun, some 35 miles from the Syrian border, just five days before Ambassador Chris Stevens, and three other US officials were killed during an assault by more than 100 Islamist militants on the US Consulate compound in Benghazi.

Another report, this time appearing on the Times of London, said that the Al Entisar was carrying 400 tons of cargo. Some of it was humanitarian, but also reportedly weapons, described by the report as the largest consignment of weapons headed for Syria’s rebels on the frontlines

SEE ALSO:

Radical Islam: Why Was Security Stripped in Benghazi?

Data points continue to accumulate about the September 11, 2012 attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya. The picture that is beginning to emerge from connecting those dots is deeply concerning on multiple levels. Two related issues dominate this analysis: The stripping of security protection from the Benghazi mission prior to the 9/11 anniversary attack and the refusal to send or even permit local help on the night of the attack.

As Fox News Bureau Chief of Intelligence Catherine Herridge suggested on the “Mike Huckabee” show on Oct. 27, both of these critical subjects may have been driven by a perceived need to cover up the existence of the role being played by the U.S. mission in Libya to serve as a command hub for the movement of weapons out of Libya to Syrian rebels fighting to bring down the Bashar Al-Assad regime.

Flopping Aces: Why the AC130s were grounded: Obama didn’t want voters to find out that he had armed the jihadists with SAMs:

It’s simple logic. In Libya there is only one possible threat to an AC130 gunship: surface to air missiles. Thus this is the only way Panetta wasn’t lying when he said that it was lack of information about the threat environment that kept him from sending defenders into “harm’s way” in Benghazi. He must have been afraid that the jihadists were lying in wait with surface to air missiles, and he had good reason to suspect such a ploy.

A primary task of the Libyan mission was to round up the war materiel of the deposed and decomposing Moammar Ghadaffi and funnel it to chosen opponents of Assad in Syria. Which part of the Syrian opposition has Obama been choosing to supply? Al Qaeda:

“Most of the arms shipped at the behest of Saudi Arabia and Qatar to supply Syrian rebel groups fighting the government of Bashar al-Assad are going to hard-line Islamic jihadists, and not the more secular opposition groups that the West wants to bolster, according to American officials and Middle Eastern diplomats,” the Times reports.

The paper quotes one U.S. official as saying, “The opposition groups that are receiving the most of the lethal aid are exactly the ones we don’t want to have it,” adding that “officials, voicing frustration, say there is no central clearinghouse for the shipments, and no effective way of vetting the groups that ultimately receive them.”

According to Adm. James A. Lyons (retired), the Libyan arms that have been funneled to the jihadists include substantial numbers of surface to air missiles:

Blackfive: Rumors of General Officers Arrested, Relieved, or Resigning in Protest:

On back channel, there has been talk that GEN Ham is actually being relieved for another mission – one that was denied airspace access by a sovereign nation, and that GEN Ham intentionally violated airspace rules/laws in order to complete a mission (not Benghazi).  There is also talk that GEN Ham is resigning in disgust of the chain of command – literally, with the Commander in Chief – and that he is trying to do so as apolitically as possible (and Ham is seen as being one of “the President’s guys”).  One would think that someone would wait for an election just days away to be over before resigning in protest (because you might have a new CinC), but who knows?  On Monday, GEN Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, declared that GEN Ham’s departure was part of a planned rotation in the works since July.  Hhmmm…

Then, we have an up and coming Rear Admiral being relieved of command of the Stennis carrier group.  This is significant as it is not due to conduct unbecoming, personal conduct, or for incompetence, but for “inappropriate leadership judgment“.  What?!

Jihad Watch: Libyan Leaks: Secret Document reveals Al-Qaeda ‘brother’ put in control of U.S. Embassy in Tripoli:

The Benghazi scandal just keeps getting worse. Clearly Obama wanted to protect the illusion that the U.S. had supported a democratic uprising in Libya, but even Obama keeps saying the al-Qaeda is the enemy — and now this. “Libyan Leaks: Secret Document reveals Al-Qaeda ‘brother’ put in control of U.S. Embassy in Tripoli,” by Walid Shoebat and Ben Barrack, October 31:

A treasure trove of secret documents has been obtained by a Libyan source who says that secularists in his country are increasingly wanting to see Mitt Romney defeat Barack Obama on November 6th. This charge is being made despite Muslim Brotherhood losses in Libyan elections last Julywhich resulted in victory for the secularists. One of those documents may help explain this sentiment.

It shows that in supporting the removal of Gadhafi, the Obama administration seemed to sign on to an arrangement that left forces loyal to Al-Qaeda in charge of security at the U.S. embassy in Tripoli from 2011 through at least the spring of 2012.

The National Transitional Council, which represented the political apparatus that opposed Gadhafi in 2011 and served as the interim government after his removal, made an extremely curious appointment in August of 2011. That appointment was none other than Abdel Hakim Belhaj, an Al-Qaeda ally and ‘brother’. Here is a copy of that letter (translation beneath it)…

Gateway Pundit: Classified August Cable Signed By Ambassador Stevens Warned Benghazi Consulate Couldn’t Withstand ‘Coordinated Attack’:

A classified cable on August 15 warned the Obama Administration that the Benghazi consulate could not withstand a “coordinated attack.”
The cable was signed by Ambassador Chris Stevens who was later murdered on 9-11.

Also Via Gateway Pundit”:

FOX News foreign policy analyst Catherine Herridge told Greta Van Susteren Wednesday,
“From what I see the State Department has culpability in the death of the US Ambassador and three Americans.”

Linked by Michelle Malkin, thanks!

Mexican Authorities Detain Man Accused of Killing Brian Terry – Was He One of the Detainees the ATF Let Go on the Night of the Murder?

EFE/SSP/SOLO USO EDITORIAL

Brian Terry is the best-known victim of “Fast and Furious,” the Obama administration’s “de facto conventional-weapons proliferation program,” as Delroy Murdock aptly called it.

Between November 2009 and January 2011, Team Obama arranged for licensed firearms dealers to sell guns to straw buyers, who transferred them to known violent criminals in Mexico. Among these firearms, two AK-47s were found near Rio Rico, Ariz., where suspected smugglers fatally shot Terry, a 40-year-old former Marine, on Dec. 15, 2010.

While Terry epitomizes those whom Fast and Furious has harmed, he is not its sole casualty.

In another Obama administration “gun-walking” escapade, in February 2011 in San Luis Potosi, Mexico, members of Los Zetas drug gang ambushed two U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents. Jaime Zapata, 32, was fatally shot and Victor Avila was wounded.

Largely overlooked is this plan’s calamitous impact on Mexico, its people and U.S.-Mexican relations.

“Our federal government knowingly, willfully, purposefully gave the drug cartels nearly 2,000 weapons — mainly AK-47s — and allowed them to walk,” Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, told NBC News recently. These arms were supposed to lead federal agents in Phoenix to the Mexican thugs who acquired them. Instead, Fast and Furious guns melted into Mexico.

Approximately 300 Mexicans have been killed or wounded by Fast and Furious guns, estimates former Mexican attorney general Victor Humberto Benitez Trevino.

Today, via Gateway Pundit, Mexican authorities announced that they have detained a man accused of fatally shooting Brian Terry back in 2010.

Reuters reported:

Mexican police detained a man accused of fatally shooting a U.S. Border Patrol agent almost two years ago in Arizona in a botched U.S. operation to track guns smuggled across the border, the government said Friday.

Federal police detained Jesus Leonel Sanchez Meza on Thursday in Sonora state, which borders Arizona, where agent Brian Terry was shot dead in December 2010, the Public Security Ministry said. The Mexican Attorney General’s Office plans to extradite Sanchez Meza to the United States, the ministry said in a statement.

Two guns found at the scene were traced to a botched U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) sting operation called “Fast and Furious” that allowed weapons to slip across the border. It was not clear, however, if those weapons fired the fatal shots.

Four others have been accused in the shooting, the ministry said. Officials did not say if they were also being detained.

Reuters managed to resist resorting to hackery in order to run interference for the regime, but ABC sure didn’t, as Andy from AoSHQ bitterly notes:

In Operation Fast and Furious and at least three earlier probes during the administration of President George W. Bush, agents in Arizona employed a risky tactic called gun-walking

Guess whose names they don’t mention in the entire article.

Also, conflating these various operations is complete bullshit. If you’re going to call OF&F “botched”, you need to be able to explain how it was supposed to work.

In one of the operations not run by Barack Obama and Eric Holder, we used GPS trackers in the guns and suspended it when the trackers didn’t work. And in all of the operations not run by Barack Obama and Eric Holder, Mexican officials were working with us so we actually had an effin’ plan to track the guns on the other side of the border that didn’t involve recovering them from crime scenes.

….After they had murdered people! We get so sick of having to point that out.

Last July, the DOJ unsealed the indictments against five men for the murder of Brian Terry. A week later, Town Hall’s Katie Pavlich, having read the incident report, discovered that four men had been detained by the ATF on the night of Terry’s murder, one was gunshot, and has remained in custody – three were let go.

Guns from Operation Fast and Furious were left at the scene. Four of the men indicted are on the run and believed to be in Mexico. Those men are Jesus Rosario Favela-Astorga, Ivan Soto-Barraza, Heraclio Osorio-Arellanes and Lionel Portillo-Meza. Manuel Osario Arellanes was shot on the night Terry was killed and has remained in custody since. His brother, Rito Osorio-Arellanes is also in custody and has been charged not for Terry’s murder, but for other related crimes.

BORTAC shooting incident report 11 TCANGL 121570000077, obtained by Townhall, indicates authorities had four suspects in custody at the time of Terry’s murder and let them go. Multiple updates in the report show “four men in custody,” one of the men in custody being wounded, with another at large but “spotted.” Five men in total. It has been confirmed multiple times that there were five bandits in Peck Canyon, Ariz. the night Terry was killed.

No, the names don’t match up exactly. Not sure what the deal there is.

With Sanchez’s arrest, three suspects in Terry’s death still remain at large.

RELATED:

Something positive that came out of this whole mess, via KVOA News Tucson:

On Thursday, the Terry family and Jim Click launched the First Annual Brian Terry Foundation Benefit Dinner. It is set for Monday, September 17 at the JW Marriott Starr Pass Resort and Spa in Tucson. The proceeds will help the Brian Terry Foundation continue it’s work. The website raises funds to help families of fallen U.S. Border Patrol Agents, establish educations scholarships and it raises awareness for border security issues.

To kick things off Thursday, the Jim Click Automotive Team presented the foundation with a $25,000 check.

Obama passed on the Bin Laden kill three separate times at Jarrett’s Urging (Update: DC Report up now)

Some Call Him Gutsy

Just passing along a fascinating web rumor I saw via Doug Ross, who says, stay tuned to The Daily Caller tomorrow for a blockbuster story based on a new “book bombshell”..

If true, the story would partially or perhaps fully confirm what a blogger published on his site, The Ulsterman Report, shortly after the raid, based on intelligence provided by the enigmatic “White House Insider” .

I was correct in stating there had been a push to invade the compound for several weeks if not months, primarily led by Leon Panetta, Hillary Clinton, Robert Gates, David Petraeus, and Jim Clapper.  The primary opposition to this plan originated from Valerie Jarrett, and it was her opposition that was enough to create uncertainty within President Obama.  Obama would meet with various components of the pro-invasion faction, almost always with Jarrett present, and then often fail to indicate his position.  This situation continued for some time, though the division between Jarrett/Obama and the rest intensified more recently, most notably from Hillary Clinton.  She was livid over the president’s failure to act, and her office began a campaign of anonymous leaks to the media indicating such.  As for Jarrett, her concern rested on two primary fronts.  One, that the military action could fail and harm the president’s already weakened standing with both the American public and the world.  Second, that the attack would be viewed as an act of aggression against Muslims, and further destabilize conditions in the Middle East.

Q: What changed the president’s position and enabled the attack against Osama Bin Laden to proceed?

A:  Nothing changed with the president’s opinion – he continued to avoid having one.  Every time military and intelligence officials appeared to make progress in forming a position, Jarrett would intervene and the stalling would begin again.  Hillary started the ball really rolling as far as pressuring Obama began, but it was Panetta and Petraeus who ultimately pushed Obama to finally act – sort of.  Panetta was receiving significant reports from both his direct CIA sources, as well as Petraeus-originating Intel.  Petraeus was threatening to act on his own via a bombing attack.  Panetta reported back to the president that a bombing of the compound would result in successful killing of Osama Bin Laden, and little risk to American lives.  Initially, as he had done before, the president indicated a willingness to act.  But once again, Jarrett intervened, convincing the president that innocent Pakistani lives could be lost in such a bombing attack, and Obama would be left attempting to explain Panetta’s failed policy.  Again Obama hesitated – this time openly delaying further meetings to discuss the issue with Panetta.  A brief meeting was held at this time with other officials, including Secretary Gates and members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, but Gates, like Panetta, was unable to push the president to act.  It was at this time that Gates indicated to certain Pentagon officials that he may resign earlier than originally indicated – he was that frustrated.  Both Panetta and Clinton convinced him to stay on and see the operation through.

What happened from there is what was described by me as a “masterful manipulation” by Leon Panetta.  Panetta indicated to Obama that leaks regarding knowledge of Osama Bin Laden’s location were certain to get out sooner rather than later, and action must be taken by the administration or the public backlash to the president’s inaction would be “…significant to the point of political debilitation.”  It was at that time that Obama stated an on-ground campaign would be far more acceptable to him than a bombing raid.  This was intended as a stalling tactic, and it had originated from Jarrett.  Such a campaign would take both time, and present a far greater risk of failure.  The president had been instructed by Jarrett to inform Mr., Panetta that he would have sole discretion to act against the Osama Bin Laden compound.  Jarrett believed this would further delay Panetta from acting, as the responsibility for failure would then fall almost entirely on him.  What Valerie Jarrett, and the president, did not know is that Leon Panetta had already initiated a program that reported to him –and only him, involving a covert on the ground attack against the compound.  Basically, the whole damn operation was already ready to go – including the specific team support Intel necessary to engage the enemy within hours of being given notice.  Panetta then made plans to proceed with an on-ground assault. This information reached either Hillary Clinton or Robert Gates first (likely via militarycontacts directly associated with the impending mission) who then informed the other.  Those two then met with Panetta, who informed each of them he had been given the authority by the president to proceed with a mission if the opportunity presented itself.  Both Gates and Clinton warned Panetta of the implications of that authority – namely he was possibly being made into a scapegoat.  Panetta admitted that possibility, but felt the opportunity to get Bin Laden outweighed that risk.  During that meeting, Hillary Clinton was first to pledge her full support for Panetta, indicating she would defend him if necessary.  Similar support was then followed by Gates.  The following day, and with Panetta’s permission, Clinton met in private with Bill Daley and urged him to get the president’s full and open approval of the Panetta plan.  Daley agreed such approval would be of great benefit to the action, and instructed Clinton to delay proceeding until he had secured that approval.  Daley contacted Clinton within hours of their meeting indicating Jarrett refused to allow the president to give that approval.  Daley then informed Clinton that he too would fully support Panetta in his actions, even if it meant disclosing the president’s indecision to the American public should that action fail to produce a successful conclusion.  Clinton took that message back to Panetta and the CIA director initiated the 48 hour engagement order.  At this point, the President of the United States was not informed of the engagement order – it did not originate from him, and for several hours after the order had been given and the special ops forces were preparing for action into Pakistan from their position in Afghanistan, Daley successfully kept Obama and Jarrett insulated from that order.

This insulation ended at some point with an abort order that I believe originated from Valerie Jarrett’s office, and was then followed up by President Obama. This abort order was later explained as a delay due to weather conditions, but the actual conditions at that time would have been acceptable for the mission.  A storm system had been in the area earlier, but was no longer an issue.  Check the data yourself to confirm.  Jarrett, having been caught off guard, was now scrambling to determine who had initiated the plan.  She was furious, repeating the acronym “CoC” and saying it was not being followed.  This is where Bill Daley intervened directly.  The particulars of that intervention are not clear to me beyond knowing he did meet with Jarrett in his office and following that meeting, Valerie Jarrett was not seen in the West Wing for some time, and apparently no longer offered up any resistance to the Osama Bin Laden mission.  What did follow from there was one or more brief meetings between Bill Daley, Hillary Clinton, a representative from Robert Gates’ office, a representative from Leon Panetta’s office, and a representative from Jim Clapper’soffice.  I have to assume that these meetings were in essence, detailing the move to proceed with the operation against the Osama Bin Laden compound.  I have been told by more than one source that Leon Panetta was directing the operation with both his own CIA operatives, as well as direct contacts with military – both entities were reporting to Panetta only at this point, and not the President of the United States.  There was not going to be another delay as had happened 24 hour earlier.  The operation was at this time effectively unknown to President Barack Obama or Valerie Jarrett and it remained that way until AFTER it had already been initiated.  President Obama was literally pulled from a golf outing and escorted back to the White House to be informed of the mission.  Upon his arrival there was a briefing held which included Bill Daley, John Brennan, and a high ranking member of the military.  When Obama emerged from the briefing, he was described as looking “very confused and uncertain.”  The president was then placed in the situation room where several of the players in this event had already been watching the operation unfold.  Another interesting tidbit regarding this is that the Vice President was already “up to speed” on the operation.  A source indicated they believe Hillary Clinton had personally made certain the Vice President was made aware of that day’s events before the president was.  The now famous photo released shows the particulars of that of that room and its occupants.  What that photo does not communicate directly is that the military personnel present in that room during the operation unfolding, deferred to either Hillary Clinton or Robert Gates.  The president’s role was minimal, including their acknowledging of his presence in the room.

Keep reading, here.

The crazy thing about The Ulsterman Report is that  just when you want to dismiss it as so much hokum–something he reported weeks, months, or even a year and a half  before anyone else, turns out to be true. He’s hit the nail on the head too many times to be dismissed.

If this new bombshell pans out, it would make Keith Koffler’s mocking White House Dossier  Fawning Interview with Obama from 5/9/2011 even funnier:

WHD: Now, How did you handle the incredible tension in the Situation Room the day you took out Bin Laden?

Obama: It’s all part of being a leader, of being, you know, basically a badass.

WHD: Yes, absolutely

Obama: And I was there for the others. I noticed Hillary about to collapse, and I comforted here with a hug and a shot of tequilla. But me, you know, I have to admit, it was tense. But I can handle it. I just can.

WHD: Is the story true that your national security aides were divided on this, but you just knew what had to be done?

Obama: Yes, some of my advisers were sissies. They were wringing their hands, and pissing on themselves.

Me, I knew we only had a 50-50 shot. It could have gone either way. But I just said, “Sometimes, folks, you just have to go for it. You have to trust your gut. You have to say, ‘Danger? Risk? Bring it on! Tension? Uncertainty? I eat if for breakfast!’ America needed to bag this dude. And so I sad, ‘Go for it, punk. Make my day. A man has to do what a man has to do.’ And so forth.”

WHD: Wowwww.

Obama: Would you like a glass of water?

WHD: No, I’m OK. And what did you say after you knew you’d killed Bin Laden?

Obama: I was as taciturn and cool as John Wayne putting his gun back in his holster. I just said, “We got him.”

WHD: Hot damn!

UPDATE:

The Daily Caller report is now up: Book: Obama canceled Bin Laden ‘kill’ raid three times at Jarrett’s urging:

At the urging of Valerie Jarrett, President Barack Obama canceled the operation to kill Osama bin Laden on three separate occasions before finally approving the May 2, 2011 Navy SEAL mission, according to an explosive new book scheduled for release August 21. The Daily Caller has seen a portion of the chapter in which the stunning revelation appears.

In ”Leading From Behind: The Reluctant President and the Advisors Who Decide for Him,“ Richard Miniter writes that Obama canceled the “kill” mission in January 2011, again in February, and a third time in March. Obama’s close adviser Valerie Jarrett persuaded him to hold off each time, according to the book.

Miniter, a two-time New York Times best-selling author, cites an unnamed source with Joint Special Operations Command who had direct knowledge of the operation and its planning.

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We’re laughing at you,Newsweak…
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After Scripted Question From Reporterette Moves Courageous Leader of the Free World to Smirk, Gloat, Taunt, and Spike the Football During Press Conference, After Lengthy End Zone Dance, Navy SEALs weighed in: Yeah, Obama Should Probably Shut Up About bin Laden Now:

A serving SEAL Team member said: ‘Obama wasn’t in the field, at risk, carrying a gun. As president, at every turn he should be thanking the guys who put their lives on the line to do this. He does so in his official speeches because he speechwriters are smart.

‘But the more he tries to take the credit for it, the more the ground operators are saying, “Come on, man!” It really didn’t matter who was president. At the end of the day, they were going to go.’

Chris Kyle, a former SEAL sniper with 160 confirmed and another 95 unconfirmed kills to his credit, said: ‘The operation itself was great and the nation felt immense pride. It was great that we did it.

‘But bin Laden was just a figurehead. The war on terror continues. Taking him out didn’t really change anything as far as the war on terror is concerned and using it as a political attack is a cheap shot.

In years to come there is going to be information that will come out that Obama was not the man who made the call. He can say he did and the people who really know what happened are inside the Pentagon, are in the military and the military isn’t allowed to speak out against the commander- in-chief so his secret is safe.’

MORE:
It is not a coincidence, I’m sure that two Special Op super PACs have formed to defeat this pathetic,  preening, grandstanding SCOAMF…
and
Linked by Doug Ross and Michelle Malkin, thanks!
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UPDATE II:
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For those of you having trouble getting into The Daily Caller, @DailyCaller reports on Twitter, that they came under malware attack. They claim to have ” turned back the enemy & reclaimed our land. Site is safe to visit. Thanks 4 your patience.”
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I’m still seeing the Attack Site notice, however.
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There are no coincidences is politics, folks.
UPDATE III:
What some deemed a prepostorous fabrication is once again being proven accurate – a new book details how Barack Obama called off the Bin Laden mission no less than three times due to the demands of senior adviser Valerie Jarrett – a book being published over one year AFTER our own  White House Insider gave the very same details.

BORTAC Incident Report Indicates Brian Terry’s Killers Were Let Go

There were five Mexican bandits in Peck Canyon, Ariz. the night Terry was killed. Of those five suspects, four are on the run, and one, who was shot on the night Terry was killed, remains in custody.

The United States Border Patrol Tactical Unit (BORTAC) shooting incident report 11 TCANGL 121570000077,  among the documents the DOJ unsealed a week ago, indicates authorities had four suspects in custody at the time of Terry’s murder and let three of them them go.

See Katie Pavlich of Townhall for the rest of her exclusive report.

Hat tip: @SkiGarmisch

 

Bill Clinton, Double Agent? (Video)

Bill Clinton’s behavior on the Obama campaign trail has set tongues wagging.

Thursday night former president Bill Clinton was a guest on Piers Morgan Tonight with guest host Harvey Weinstein. Weinstein, the well-known Hollywood producer, openly acknowledged that he is a big supporter of both Clinton and Barack Obama, and he was working it for all he could. But it may have backfired. Writing in The Caucus, the politics blog of The New York Times, Michael Barbaro referredto Clinton’s comments as “an unusually open show of defiance against the party’s presidential nominee.”

As Barbaro put it, “On Thursday, former President Bill Clinton become the latest and by far the most prominent Democrat to suggest the strategy of criticizing Mr. Romney’s career in private equity is misguided.”

While stating that he believes Obama’s proposals and record on the economy would be better for the country, Clinton said of Romney that “the man who has been governor and had a sterling business career crosses the qualification threshold.” The “sterling business career” he was referring to was Romney’s time at Bain Capital. The problem, said Barbaro, is that this is “a message directly at odds with that of Mr. Obama’s re-election campaign, which has sought to portray the Republican as a rapacious capitalist who is out of touch with ordinary voters.”

Then Weinstein brought up Donald Trump, who he repeatedly called “uncool.” He asked Clinton about Trump’s comments about President Obama’s birth certificate. Clinton’s answer may have surprised him, in that he spoke very highly of Trump. “Donald Trump has been uncommonly nice to Hillary and me. We’re all New Yorkers,” he said. “And I like him,” said Clinton, “and I love playing golf with him. But the evidence is pretty clear that President Obama was born in Hawaii.”

Many people are wondering where Clinton’s loyalties truly lie.

On Fox News’ Special report, Charles Krauthamer called Bill Clinton, Obama’s biggest and most influential surrogate, a  “bull in a china shop” who’s saying things that undermine his reelection chances. An interesting discussion ensued, culminating in Charles jokingly calling Clinton a “double agent”.

video via Flopping Aces

Dick Morris went further in this recent interview with Sean Hannity, saying Bill Clinton never liked Obama, and has been telling Republicans privately that “you have six months to save the country.”

Morris told Hannity,”When it comes to a little jab here and a little jab there, you can count on Clinton to do it…”  adding that Clinton’s remarks about Romney sterling business record “wasn’t such a little jab – this was throwing Obama under the bus!”

Whatever is going on, it has me completely confused because at times, Clinton looks very much to be in Obama’s corner. But perhaps he says what he has to say in order to gain access to the Obama White House, so he can do what he can to undermine it.

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Video: Jerome Corsi Claims Andrew Breitbart’s Last Interview Was With Joe Arpaio

What were the two biggest stories in America on March 1, 2012? One was the shocking and devastating news that Andrew Breitbart was dead, and the other was – (or should have been) Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s press conference on the results of his investigation into Barack Obama’s eligibility, because he found that the thing posted on the White House website, last April was a complete and utter forgery, as document experts have been saying since the beginning.  Unfortunately, story #1 sucked the oxygen out of story #2.

I’m gonna keep talking about story #2. I think Andrew would approve, since he was apparently interested in the story, too. It came out during Thursday’s press conference that Andrew Breitbart’s last interview may well have been with Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

Video via The Western Center For Journalism:

With the announcement of Andrew’s passing overnight we could not help recalling our conversation just 3 weeks ago in Washington, DC. Andrew said on Feb 9, 2012 in Washington, DC “wait til they see what happens March first.”

He’s talking about the Thursday night  CPAC blog bash – I shared a cab ride back to the hotel with the blogger who wrote those words. He was a jovial bon-vivant, “out and proud”, laughing and joking in the back seat of the cab. I asked him who he was, and he said, Larry Sinclair.

UPDATE:

Drudge is now running the headline:'Wait til they see what happens March 1st'... (link to Info Wars.) They think he was talking about starting the roll out of the videos on that date.

 

New Email Shows Former ATF Director, Ken Melson, Knew About Fast and Furious Earlier Than Stated

Over the Fourth of July weekend, last year, Acting ATF Director Kenneth Melson was interviewed by staff members of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee about Fast and Furious. He brought his own lawyer. It was reported by nearly everyone that he was cooperating with House investigators, telling them everything he knew about Fast and Furious, which he only found out about after it hit the news.

 According to Mr. Melson, it was not until after the public controversy that he personally reviewed hundreds of documents relating to the case, including wiretap applications and Reports of Investigation (ROIs). By his account, he was sick to his stomach when he obtained those documents and learned the full story. Mr. Melson said that he told the Office of the Deputy Attorney General (ODAG) at the end of March that the Department needed to reexamine how it was responding to the requests for information from Congress.

***

The evidence we have gathered raises the disturbing possibility that the Justice
Department not only allowed criminals to smuggle weapons but that taxpayer dollars
from othe r agencies may have financed those engaging in such activities. While this is
preliminary information, we must find out i f there is any truth to it. According to
Acting Director Melson, he became aware of this startling possibility only after the
murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry and the indictments of the straw purchasers,
which we now know were substantially delayed by the u.s. Attorney’s Office and Main
Justice. Mr. Melson provided documents months ago supporting his concerns to the
official in the ODAG responsible for document production to the Committees, but those
documents have not be en provided to us.

Last month, an email surfaced that showed  Melson  thanking Dennis Burke for his  hardliner approach to the DOJ on the response letter to Senator Grassley that has  since been “withdrawn.”

From: Melson, Kenneth E.
To: Burke, Dennis (USAAZ)
Sent: 2/3/2011 7:51:58 PM
Subject: Grassley

Dennis: I just got back from the Interpol meeting and wanted to thank you for your help on the Grassley response and for your work on Fast and Furious. Ken

That alone didn’t prove to me that he knew, but it certainly increased suspicion.

This latest email not only proves that he did know about Fast and Furious as early as Dec 2010, but he was actively trying to contain chatter about it on the Clean-up ATF Message board.

The Western Center For Journalism reports:

Discovery of a January 2011 e-mail exchange between then Acting ATF Director Ken Melson and the Bureau’s chief council Steve Rubenstein has put the kibosh on Obama administration elites’ latest “we didn’t know about it” defense concerning the regime’s involvement in Operation Fast and Furious.

On December 22, 2010, a contributor identifying himself as “1desertrat” posted the following to the “CLEANUP ATF” website:

Word is that curious George Gillett the Phoenix ASAC stepped on it again. Allegedly he has approved more than 500 AR-15 type rifles from Tucson and Phoenix cases to be “walked” to Mexico. Appears that ATF may be one of the largest suppliers of assault rifles to the Mexican cartels! One of these rifles is rumored to have been linked to the recent killing of a Border Patrol Officer in Nogales, AZ. Can anyone confirm this information? [1]

Well, Director Melson read this “CLEANUP ATF” post and didn’t appreciate the fact that ATF business had been so willfully shared with the general public. Especially, this business. So, he contacted ATF Chief Council Steve Rubenstein for advice. And the e-mail reply he received from Rubenstein is a beauty.  Rubenstein wrote:

The disclosure of this information has a potential deleterious effect on ATF’s undercover operations. In that regard, suspects may alter their behavior if they know that law enforcement is allowing certain firearms to “walk” into Mexico. (my bold text) In addition, public knowledge of this type of operation potentially places informants and undercover agents in jeopardy.

If “1desertrat” is an ATF employee, then he/she is subject to our Orders and Standards of Conduct….[2]

Melson Email, here.

Rubentsein goes on to quote the ATF Code of Conduct for employees, making it clear to Melson that the individual responsible for the post could be dealt with rather severely if indeed an ATF agent.

And Melson’s response: “Thanks Steve. I’m going to forward this to IA.”  That is, Internal Affairs, which had by this time earned the reputation of being little more than a tool for the intimidation of agents who did not adequately adhere to ATF policy, regardless of how corrupt or nefarious.

Is it possible that Melson knew about the  highly illegal gun-walking operation, but kept his superiors in the Department of Justice in the dark? Doug Book at WCFJ answers that question:

As an attorney, Ken Melson knew the consequences, both of such a crime and its cover up. One can wager, if only to protect his own hide, he made sure his Department of Justice and executive branch bosses knew it as well.

The name Steven Rubenstein may ring a bell, since he was recently seen here, treading water fast and furiously after he jumped off the sinking Fast and Furious ship:

ATF Chief Counsel Steve Rubenstein is retiring affective Jan 31.

No other details have been confirmed at this time, but it is certain that Rubenstein was hip deep in any number of ATF scandals, including the Gunwalker conspiracy and cover-up. My sources, who have had a belly-full of Rubenstein’s anti-gun agenda over the years, say he will not be missed.

MORE:

I should have mentioned that after many had speculated, last Spring, that Kenneth Melson would be thrown under the bus, he was finally moved last August, from his position as acting ATF Director to the position of senior adviser on forensic science at the Office of Legal Programs. It was considered by the DOJ to be a “lateral move”.

UPDATE:

Clean upATF: Melson denies his subordinates told him about F&F:

   Posted 06 January 2012 – 04:58 PM

“Acting” directors or not, how does Melson explain his January, 2011 email exchange with Rubenstein? Melson was informed of gunwalking in December of 2010, right here on CleanUp ATF! His only concern appeared to be the severity of the punishment he would be able to inflict on 1desertrat, if an Agent. Apparently the brass believe the lowly agents to be capable of any sort of misdeed due to congressional failure to approve a presidential nominee!
***
Posted Yesterday, 09:13 PM

So is Melson claiming to be the dumbest damned human being on the face of the planet?
I mean….assuming I was in his position …working for the BATFE….ie enforcing GUN laws…and for some strange reason Im sitting at my desk watching GUN SALES…..am I so damned dense that I cant make ANY connection that I might be watching them for a REASON ?
Did Melson not like the Golf Channel or CNN at all…and so much so that instead of watching some entertaining show on TV to pass the long work day that he instead decided to watch gun sales down at the local mom and pop firearm shop ?
Something seriously isnt adding up if he’s claiming ignorance unless there is some extreme situation here  where Melsons office is similar to the Matrix movies “Architect” that has a few hundred TV screens all going at once and he just happens to watch whichever one his chair and donuts are currently pointed at….ie he had so many options  that he didnt know what he was actually watching….which for me and a lot of the voting public just isnt going to fly. It was his damned job to know what he was dealing with. And if he couldnt then whomever put him in that position seemingly wanted a warm, brainless body to sit in that chair but not think about what he was actually doing….in that case it would seem that the one who appointed Melson would be complicit in F/F themselves and trying to make sure that they placed a complete lackwit who wouldnt figure it all out in that position.
I remember when his name first came into this, and I’ll have to check my own notes, but it seems to me if he’s playing the stupid card now that his story has changed in some way. Something seriously amiss here. Its no wonder decent, honorable BATFE agents have brought this all to light.

Linked by RWN, and Daily Pundit, thanks!

Hat tip: Brian B.

Fiancee who Came to Cain Accuser, Bialek’s Defense – Not Actually Her Fiancee

Five days ago, it was widely reported that Mark Harwood,  the financee of Sharon Bialek, one of the Cain accusers who went public, was  gallantly coming to his beloved’s defense. An interview that was picked up by scores of media outlets, lent credibility to her story, even as damaging reports about her personal history was struggling for media attention. A few days ago, it was revealed that new lie detector technology had indicated that her story was a  lie.

Now, Harwood wants to “clear the air”, Fox Nation reports:

For starters, Sharon Bialek isn’t his fiancee, said Mark Harwood in an exclusive interview on Wednesday night.

“We were engaged last year in June but I think there have been some assumptions that Sharon still lives here in Mundelein with me” Harwood told the I-Team. “Sharon and her son moved out in February of this year and now live in their own home … so effectively we’re no longer engaged.”

RS McCain notes that the MSM made a point of mentioning Harwood was financially secure, living very comfortably in an affluent neighborhood. Ben Smith, for instance, reported in the Politico:

In fact, per the Tribune, she’s living with her fiance, described as an executive in the medical equipment industry, in “a large, five-bedroom home… in north suburban Mundelein.”

Although McCain isn’t sure this has any particular significance, it does make one go “hmmmmm”.
It was Thursday before WLS-TV got this interview, so that little bit of misinformation got corrected by the local ABC station in Chicago, three crucial days after it had been widely reported and woven into the media narrative as evidence of Bialek’s credibility.

Like I said: Things that make you go “hmmmm.”

Hat tip: Brian B.

Linked by Weasel Zippers, thanks!

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“Gold-Digger” Sharon Bialek Lived In Same Building As David Axelrod, Once Accused Ex-Boyfriend Of Harassment

Herman Cain categorically denied all the sexual harassment charges made against him, including the latest allegations of sexual misconduct and is having a press conference this afternoon in Phoenix to specifically address Bialek’s charges. (UPDATE:Live stream, here.)

One person – either Cain or Bialek is clearly lying, so now it unfortunately becomes necessary to look into the character of the person making the charges because she has the potential of derailing the campaign of the frontrunner in the Republican Presidential primary. If these allegations against Cain are false, a monumental injustice has been done not only to an innocent man, but to the entire country denied the opportunity to vote for him. If they are true, well -  I don’t want to see a serial lecher and liar become the Republican standard bearer.

Who is Sharon Bialek? How credible is this woman?  How credible is her story? What little we know of her is not terribly flattering.

According to this Daily Mail report, she’s a “gold digger” who’s filed for bankruptcy twice,  has not held a job for more than two years, always lived above her station, and will do anything to never have to work again. She has accused an ex-boyfriend of harassment, and her own father only heard her shocking story about Cain for the first time, yesterday. Her live-in fiance heard about it for the first time, last Friday.

Does it seem a little odd to you that she wouldn’t have told her fiance about such a noteworthy thing? The frontrunner in the Republican party had once made a pass at her? Not worthy of comment? Seems weird.

Meanwhile, a friend of Ms Bialek, from Chicago, told the New York Post: ‘She has a very infectious personality. It’s easy to see how she won [Cain] over. But the reality of her situation is — she’s a complete gold digger. It’s all about the money.’

Adding that she was from a middle-income family but lives in a posh house while running from bill collectors, the source said: ‘Most of her jobs ended in termination. It’s always the employer’s fault, not hers.

‘This is a lady who lives off the system. She is hellbent on finding a way of never having to work and living the lifestyle she wants to live, a very affluent lifestyle.’

That’s some “friend”.

Details of a number of legal and financial difficulties  belonging to Ms Bialek also emerged today, with the Chicago Tribune listing a long history with tax evasion and late or missed credit card payments.

The paper reported that Ms Bialek has filed for personal bankruptcy twice, first in 1991 and then again in 2001.

In 2001, she claimed $5,700 in assets and more than $36,000 in liabilities. Among the creditors seeking payment was a management firm demanding back rent of $4,500, four credit card companies and a lawyer asking for his legal fees.

She is also said to have accused a former boyfriend of harassing her for money he had loaned her after she borrowed $4,500 from him.

The IRS filed a tax lien against her in 2009 for nearly $5,200. In August, the Illinois Department of Revenue claimed Ms Bialek owed the state more than $4,300, including penalties and interest, relating to income taxes from 2004, according to county records.

Court records also show creditors took legal action against her during the past decade, including at least one lawsuit filed in Cook County.

***

Gloria Allred described her client as a ‘registered Republican’, but the 50-year-old does not have an active voter card in Illinois, election officials said. The state does not allow voters to register by party, but records show she pulled a GOP ballot in the 2008 primary.

There’s also this:

A Fox News reporter confronted Ms Bialek during an interview today about living in the same building as Obama top aid David Axelrod.

She was asked: ‘One of the things is that you lived at a 505 North Lake Shore Drive apartment, right? This is the same building, it happens to be the same building David Axelrod lives in. Do you know David Axelrod? Ever have any interaction with him at all?’

***

The 50-year-old replied: ‘I saw him in the gym. I mean — everybody nods to each other. It is friendly building but I never had any interaction with him.’

Hmmmm.

RCP video of that interview with Fox’s Martha MacCallum, here.

Here’s Cain’s appearance on  Jimmy Kimmel Live, last night:

See also:

The Other McCain: ‘Unwanted Advances’:

The Accuser is an attractive woman and we may assume that she has been the object of many “unwanted advances” over the years, all but one of which she considered unworthy of a Manhattan press conference.

A New York Times headline characterizes the accusation against Cain as “lewd behavior,” but such behavior goes on all the time — yea, verily, even in New York! — without meriting a headline in the Times.

Gloria Allred described her client as a ‘registered Republican’, but the 50-year-old does not have an active voter card in Illinois, election officials said. The state does not allow voters to register by party, but records show she pulled a GOP ballot in the 2008 primary.

Ace of Spades HQ still thinking where there’s smoke, there’s fire, links to Bill Bennet in his Great Big Cain Roundup:

Bill Bennet kinda doubts this is a high-tech lynching.

Four women are not an insignificant number. One or two anonymous charges, perhaps. Three anonymous charges (where, as I understand the story, Cain knows of at least two of the women) plus one woman who went very public and opened herself up to all manner of investigation are a lot. It is no longer insignificant. Neither is it insignificant that the Cain campaign discounted the charges in the initial stories, saying they were based on anonymous sources, only to make a mockery by blaming other campaigns with less substantiation than the original stories.If Herman Cain wants to be taken seriously as a public advocate for anything, never mind running for the chief executive and commander in chief of the most powerful and important and blessed country in the world, he needs to give a full press conference dedicated exclusively to this issue and these allegations.

I have watched long enough and held my tongue long enough to give him the benefit of the doubt, but can no longer say this is a witch hunt, “a lynching” to use his word, or any other euphemism. There are allegations out there that matter and they have stacked up. For we who led the charge against Bill Clinton on a number of related issues to continue to blame the media or other campaigns or say it simply doesn’t matter makes us the hypocrites as well.

Read it all – he covers all the latest.

Backyard Conservative, Ann Leary has a round-up of her own: Chicago Media Icon: Bialek Has a History

Kerry Picket:  Latest woman to accuse Cain brings Chicago back in the picture

In a big way. Check this out:

I received a press statement from Ms. O’Grady’s office last week after a blog post of mine on the water cooler regarding a source close to the Cain camp believed Mayor Rahm Emanuel had something to do with the exchange of information regarding sexual harassment charges against Mr. Cain. Mayor Emanuel has denied any involvement.

Below is Ms. O’Grady’s statement:

The Illinois Restaurant Association is an entity independently managed and operated apart from the National Restaurant Association. Sheila O’Grady was appointed President of the Illinois Restaurant Association in 2007. She does not have a prior connection to Mr. Cain (whose time at the National Restaurant Association pre-dated her appointment by more than a decade), nor does she have any knowledge of the current allegations stemming from his tenure at the organization. Any reports suggesting otherwise are baseless.

O’Grady served as Mayor Daley’s chief of staff for a number of years until 2007. Daley, no stranger to controversy himself, was recently slapped with a lawsuit last spring by John Brooks, Chicago’s former fire Commissioner. Brooks claimed that Daley threatened to smear him over what Brooks said were false sexual harassment allegations if Brooks did not retire on his own.

I made no mention of O’Grady in any previous blog post. One Chicago radio host, however, did mention her name following my post on Emanuel. Other than that, why is O’Grady speaking up now?

Repubs Request Special Counsel To Investigate Holder In Fast And Furious Probe

FOX NEWS EXCLUSIVE:

The wheels of justice turn slowly, especially when it comes to to the nation’s top Scofflaw, Eric Holder, but it appears justice may finally be served:

House Republicans are calling for a special counsel to determine whether Attorney General Holder perjured himself during his testimony to the House Judiciary Committee on Operation Fast and Furious, Fox News has learned.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith, R-Texas, was sending a letter to President Obama on Tuesday arguing that Holder cannot investigate himself, and requesting the president instruct the Department of Justice to appoint a special counsel.

FILE: Attorney General Eric Holder testifies on Capitol Hill May 3 before a House Judiciary Committee oversight hearing.

The question is whether Holder committed perjury during a Judiciary Committee hearing on May 3. At the time, Holder indicated he was not familiar with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives program known as Fast and Furious until about April 2011.

“I’m not sure of the exact date, but I probably heard about Fast and Furious for the first time over the last few weeks,” Holder testified.

However, a newly discovered memo dated July 2010 shows Michael Walther, director of the National Drug Intelligence Center, told Holder that straw buyers in the Fast and Furious operation “are responsible for the purchase of 1,500 firearms that were then supplied to the Mexican drug trafficking cartels.”

Other documents also indicate that Holder began receiving weekly briefings on the program from the National Drug Intelligence Center “beginning, at the latest, on July 5, 2010,” Smith wrote.

“These updates mentioned, not only the name of the operation, but also specific details about guns being trafficked to Mexico,” Smith wrote in the letter to Obama.

“Allegations that senior Justice Department officials may have intentionally misled members of Congress are extremely troubling and must be addressed by an independent and objective special counsel. I urge you to appoint a special counsel who will investigate these allegations as soon as possible,” Smith wrote.

One question. Why does the Department get to appoint it’s own Special Counsel? I think (hope!) Fox News got that wrong.

The Hill quotes Smith’s letter directly:

“Allegations that senior Justice Department officials may have intentionally misled Members of Congress are extremely troubling and must be addressed by an independent and objective special counsel,” said Smith in his letter to Obama.

“I urge you to appoint a special counsel who will investigate these allegations as soon as possible.”

Okay, that’s not much better. I thought Congress appointed the Special Prosecutor:

A special prosecutor generally is a lawyer from outside the government appointed by an attorney general or, in the United States, by Congress to investigate a government official for misconduct while in office. A reasoning for such an appointment is that the governmental branch or agency may have political connections to those it might be asked to investigate. Inherently, this creates a conflict of interest and a solution is to have someone from outside the department lead the investigation. The term “special prosecutor” may have a variety of meanings from one country to the next, from one government branch to the next within the same country, and within different agencies within each government branch. Critics of the use of special prosecutors argue that these investigators act as a “4th branch” to the government because they are not subject to limitations in spending or have deadlines to meet.

Can someone explain this to me?

We’re not going to get an honest broker from Obama.

UPDATE:

Legal Eagle, gabrielmalor tells me on Twitter: The AG appoints a Special Counsel, but that’d be difficult in this case.

That would be why they asked for the President to appoint the Special Counsel. Because obviously, the Justice Dept. can’t investigate itself.

Hopefully, Gabe will explain more in a post at AoSHQ, soon.

MORE:

Via Oversight and Reform, Issa on Fox and Friends, this morning:

UPDATE:

At Hot Air, Ed Morrissey writes,
“Now Obama has to decide whether to defy Congress and create a precedent for protecting appointees who willfully mislead Congress, or submit to a special prosecutor that could run wild on his administration.  I’m going to guess that Obama will defy the House, but that may not last very long, especially with Darrell Issa probing Solyndra and other potential scandals”
What’s stopping him from appointing someone who is thoroughly corrupt and in the tank for the administration? Isn’t that the Chicago way? The fix is always in?
This is exactly why Issa wanted to have his investigation wrapped up before a Special Prosecutor was appointed.

 

Media Buzz: Chris Christie Mulling a 2012 Run

Republicans are still concerned that the current field is weak, and both Rick Perry and Romney leaves them with  doubts; Romney, because he’s  a technocrat who doesn’t have firm convictions, and Perry, because people are not sure of his ability to articulate his views.

See Breitbart T.V. for a serious discussion of a possible Christie Run on Fox News Sunday, where Wall Street Journal editor, Paul Gigot shares some insider info on the situation. He claims that there have enough people who have gone to him now and said, “look this field is weak, and none of them may be able to beat the president, we need a republican president, we think you can do it. Now is your moment….”

He says he’s thinking about it now, very carefully.

I’ve noted  the fact that Christie has repeatedly and forcefully denied that he has any interest in running in 2012 is a problem. After all, Obama did the very same thing after he was elected to the US Senate in 2004.  In his case it always looked like the White House was the ultimate goal, and the denials were less than sincere. In Christie’s case, I have no doubt that when he was elected Governor of New Jersey, he had no greater aspirations than fixing the financial mess in that state. But now he can say , with the country’s bleak economic forecast,  he’s been pulled into this thing almost against his will. We need someone who can fix the financial mess we’re in, and he’s the man to do it.

Jennifer Rubin also making the case for Christie, points to a recent speech he made at the American Enterprise Institute where he made the case for entitlement reform:

And here’s the thing about that speech at AEI: He didn’t use a teleprompter. Sitting in the audience about five or six rows back, I didn’t see a written speech. On either side of me were mainstream reporters who were entirely transfixed. His humor is dry, he treats the audience like adults and he’s refusing to parrot the usual blather that pols dole out to a cynical press corps. That room had wonks and Tea Party advocates. It had conservative and mainstream media. And to a person, the reaction to that performance was “Wow.”

Let’s consider for a moment Christie in the GOP debate. Can you imagine what he’d say about Perry’s backpedaling on Social Security? Could you imagine him letting Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) get away with nonsense about America bringing 9/11 on itself? Ooof. I imagine he’d brush off Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) with a shake of the head and a sly remark. (“Michele, that’s cuckoo land stuff. Mental retardation isn’t caused by a vaccination.”) And as for Romney, Christie would have a solid case to make that you really can govern as a full-throated conservative in a blue state.

***

Perhaps the best aspect to a Christie governance is his inclination to challenge conservatives, to aspire beyond rhetoric. At AEI he concluded:

[S]ome people say I’m too combative, some people say I’m too much of a fighter. Well, I’ll tell you, I’m fighting now because now is the time that matters most for New Jersey’s future and in America’s future. We are teetering on the edge of disaster. And I love when people talk about American exceptionalism but American exceptionalism has to include the courage to do the right thing. It cannot just be a belief that because we are exceptional, everything will work okay. Part of truly being exceptional is being willing to do the difficult things, is to stop playing the political games , stop looking at the bumper pool of politics and to step up and start doing the right thing. . . . See it seems to me, that what America is really all about is about a group of people who came from every corner of this earth because they wanted a chance for greatness. That’s what has made us the greatest country on Earth. Our calling for greatness at this time is to confront these issues, to say them out loud, and to stop playing around and to not waste another minute. . . .

Rubin includes more of the text from Christie’s speech in her post, which you should read to understand why people are so impressed.

One of the reasons why I was so behind a Paul Ryan run, is because people who have the gift of being able to speak brilliantly extemporaneously, are  a rare commodity. We need such a person to run against Obama to clean his clock in a debate. Obama’s slick propaganda would be reduced to the weak pablum that it is, matched against the superior rhetorical skills of a Paul Ryan or Chris Christie.

Do we really need another affable Texan stammering into the microphone about “compassionate conservatism” or some such.?

The buzz has finally reached New Media Animation. Stand by for some seriously silly speculations:

NMA touches on some of the issues in which Chris Christie differs from the base, not including his recent, almost disqualifying comments on global warming. Hopefully, he’ll look further into the issue and his position will “evolve”….

You can check his positions on major issues, here.

It appears that he is extremely weak on environmental issues:

  • Jersey shore for tourism instead of offshore drilling. (Aug 2011)
  • $157 million for Green Acres open-space acquisition. (Aug 2011)

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ATF Phoenix Manager shared Fast and Furious Info with White House (With Videos)

email graphic via Sipsey Street Irregulars

ATF Special Agent in Charge of the Phoenix office, Bill Newell was squirming on the hot seat in Tuesday’s Fast and Furious hearing on Capitol Hill. As CBS News’ Sharyl Attkisson reports, Newell admitted to corresponding with White House National Security Director, Kevin O’Reilly about the ATF’s gunrunning operations:

At a lengthy hearing on ATF’s controversial gunwalking operation today, a key ATF manager told Congress he discussed the case with a White House National Security staffer as early as September 2010. The communications were between ATF Special Agent in Charge of the Phoenix office, Bill Newell, and White House National Security Director for North America Kevin O’Reilly. Newell said the two are longtime friends. The content of what Newell shared with O’Reilly is unclear and wasn’t fully explored at the hearing. It’s the first time anyone has publicly stated that a White House official had any familiarity with ATF’s operation Fast and Furious, which allowed thousands of weapons to fall into the hands of suspected traffickers for Mexican drug cartels in an attempt to gain intelligence.

It’s unknown as to whether O’Reilly shared information with anybody else at the White House. Congressional investigators obtained an email from Newell to O’Reilly in September of last year in which Newell began with the words: “you didn’t get this from me.” “What does that mean,” one member of Congress asked Newell, ” ‘you didn’t get this from me?’ ” “Obviously he was a friend of mine,” Newell replied, “and I shouldn’t have been sending that to him.”

Issa tried to get Newell to admit that he allowed thousands of guns to walk.

One of the whistleblowers,  Special Agent Canino, whom Newell claimed knew about the operation,  testified that “at no time EVER did he know that ATF agents were following known suspected gun traffickers (one of whom bought 700 guns)…..never, ever would I imagine that we would let that happen…..I had no clue that we were allowing these guys to operate like this……there was no interdiction to start any case…” At the end of this video, Newell was asked about his correspondence with White House National Security Director for North America, Kevin O’Reilly, who has been described by Sipsey Street Irregular’s sources as  “a ghost,”  “sheep-dipped,”  “a doctrinaire liberal”,   a “snake in a suit,” and a “sociopath” with the nickname, “The Scorpion,” (as in the story of The Frog and the Scorpion). Sounds like just the sort of charmer who belongs in this White House:

Rep. Chaffetz demanded to know when Newell finally realized he was allowing guns to walk. He couldn’t get a straight answer because Newell claims he didn’t see it that way…

Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC), who has had direct and indirect experience with the ATF for 10 years, focused on why it was conducting the operation in the jacked-up manner it did, “Why do it this way? It was never going to work!”

See Also: David Codrea, Gun Rights Examiner: The transcript of Newell questioning related to NSC’s O’Reilly

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Debt Ceiling News Round-Up: “In The End, All This Is About Who Gets The Blame”

Charles Krauthammer was absolutely correct about that, and he went back to the Clinton/Gingrich budget showdown in 1995 to help make his point. Krauthammer’s segment starts at approx. 1:40.

“People have to remember that with divided government, Gingrich attempted to govern when the Republicans had two houses of congress, in the absence of the Presidency, and were defeated. And now the idea is that the Republicans are going to govern and impose all these cuts holding only the House? It’s impossible. And if they lose the public relations battle here, it will be like 1996, all over again…and they’ll lose the Presidency…If they want real change they’re going to have to elect a Republican, and that is what McConnell has in the back of his mind…”

Brit Hume’s plan to get a debt ceiling agreement with massive cuts and a Balanced Budget Amendment sounds good, but Mitch McConnell’s statement on the Senate floor, today is landing like a lead balloon in the right-wing blogosphere:

Michelle Malkin is hitting her head against the wall: Another mortifying McConnell head-banging-against-the-wall moment

Here’s Rich Lowry: “It’s beginning to get out on the Hill. It’s complicated, but here is the gist as I understand it: Congress authorizes in legislation the president to submit a request for an increase in the debt limit in three tranches over the next year or so, with corresponding proposals for spending cuts; when the president submits his request, Congress immediately considers a resolution of disapproval; if the resolution passes, the president can veto it and–assuming his veto is subsequently upheld–he gets the increase in the debt limit. Got it? More later…”

The Daily Caller Says: ‘Not Leadership’ Conservatives roundly reject McConnell plan giving Obama power to raise debt limit

Presidential candidate Newt Gingrich even took to Twitter to voice his disapproval, saying, “McConnell’s plan is an irresponsible surrender to big government, big deficits and continued overspending. I oppose it.”

Is that the same Newt Gingrich who got his ass handed to him in ’95/96?

Here’s what’s got conservatives so up in arms: We Will Not Pretend That a Bad Deal Is a Good One:

It wasn’t a bad speech, and given the predicament Republicans are in, (which Krauthammer crystallized, above), you can have some sympathy for his way of thinking.

Ace sums up:

There are more quotes at Rubin’s article; it was a good speech. He sums up by noting that Obama insists on one of these three options:

1) Raising taxes

2) Smoke and mirrors to conceal the fact he’s not cutting spending, and endeavors to persuade the Republican Party to join him in this deception

3) Default

…and that Republicans will not agree to any of these. From that, he concludes that real change is impossible while Obama is President.

Now, regarding his actual “backstop” plan.

Guy Benson explains. It’s about politics. Or at least Republicans refusing to go along with one of Obama’s “three options.”

See also: Jen Rubin: EXCLUSIVE: McConnell to Obama: Eat your own darn peas 

McConnell is not known for his fiery rhetoric. But plainly, the White House shenanigans have aggravated, if not angered, him. He does a service to his own side and to the national debate by refusing to fuzz up the issues: “We will not pretend that a bad deal is a good one.” He laid out the options: “If you think that the federal government isn’t big enough, then the only responsible thing to do is to support higher taxes. For those who are honest about that, I appreciate their candor. But for those of us who don’t think the federal government should be in charge of banks, the auto industry, the housing business, the student loan business, health care and regulating everything else under the sun, we’re not about to further enable that model of government by shaking down the American people for more money at a time when they can least afford it.”

McConnell’s plan is the ultimate backstop. If Obama doesn’t get off his tax hikes, McConnell has a plan ready for a vote. Democrats could try to filibuster it, but default would then result. It is time to change the rules of the game, McConnell has decided. Let’s see what happens.

Ace thinks it’s a crap deal, and if this is true, he probably right: Liberals Ezra Klein, Joe Klein Are Lovin’ McConnell’s Proposal

The old, fat Klein makes the point that no one cares about the debt ceiling hike. At least, not the broad voting population.

I mentioned in a comment that McConnell had a similar scheme back in December 2009 as we were voting on ObamaCare. We could have forced the Democrats to remain in session through the holidays; instead, McConnell agreed to let them recess and come back, in exchange for a supposedly prominent vote on the 2010 debt ceiling hike.

Yeah, that wasn’t as prominent as planned, was it? No one reported on it and it resulted in zero political benefit.

Here’s the sort of shameless demagoguery Republicans are having to deal with:

Obama: If We Don’t Get a Deal, I Can’t Guarantee We’ll Be Sending Out Social Security Checks on August 3rd

Doug Powers notes:

He could have said something like “If a deal isn’t made there will of course be a problem paying for Social Security in the long term, but in the short term I have many options as far as shuffling dollars around to fund high priorities, so I can say with confidence that Americans who depend on Social Security will still get their checks for the foreseeable future while we sort this out.” But Obama didn’t say that.

Of course not. This is the Chicago way. During the government shutdown budget talks in April, it was the Troops’ pay that Obama couldn’t guarantee.

See also: Confederate Yankee: Fear-Monger-in-Chief:

Presidential leadership is about making difficult choices and assigning rational priorities. Because Mr. Obama is virtually incapable of making difficult choices, he is content to “lead from behind,” as he does with the budget. The debt ceiling–which is in place to keep irresponsible politicians whose only skill is wasting other people’s money from literally spending America into oblivion–need not be raised. The alternative is to get spending immediately under control, but this is not a possibility for Mr. Obama. If the kitty is a bit short, his only solution is to rob pensioners? What brilliant, inspired leadership. No doubt our Treasure Secretary, Mr. Geithner, came up with that one. May I suggest a few additional alternatives?

Mr. Obama could–and should–have said:

(1) I can’t guarantee that the EPA will be able to continue regulating American business out of existence while destroying jobs.

(2) I can’t guarantee that the Department of Education will be able to continue wasting huge amounts of money while over-regulating school districts everywhere.

(3) I can’t guarantee that the ATF will be able to continue allowing weapons to flow into the hands of domestic and foreign criminals.

(4) I can’t guarantee that all of my unelected, unaccountable czars will be able to continue to subvert American democracy.

He ain’t finished – read all 15 of his ideas. Not that Bam would take them up. It’s fun to dream, anyway. The point is – there are any number of programs and bureaucracies that could be cut and no one would miss them (in fact the country would be better off without them). This is why Obama is such a cheap Chicago thug for trying to scare granny with his vicious SS threat..

Stay strong now, Mr. Speaker – no crying, now…

photo via Daylife.

More Krauthammer as he notes with an air of disdain: President Obama’s deficit cutting is a farce:

He wants Republicans to call Obama’s bluff on a debt ceiling 3 month extension deal, because Obama will get the blame when he refuses to sign it.


Republicans have to play this very, very smart. How hard can it be to outsmart a community organizer?

UPDATE:

Found a cool new website with a relevant post:

Monty Pelerin’s World: President Quixote’s Legacy: Confused, Ill-Educated and Not Too Bright

How dangerous this delusional man might be is moot. What seems no longer at issue is Obama’s “superior intelligence.” Obama’s belief system is dominated by the dismissed exploitation theories of Karl Marx and the 60′s style radicals he grew up around. The Reverend Wright, preached to him for twenty years about exploitation in terms of Black Liberation Theology. An unrepentant terrorist, Bill Ayers was a close friend and arguably author of one of Obama’s autobiographies. His personally selected “Czars” are the sorriest collection of Presidential advisors ever, at least in terms of reflecting American values and beliefs.

Many went on the same intellectual voyage that Obama did. Most of us outgrew this nonsense, usually by our mid-twenties. Obama never did. He is still a child, intellectually undeveloped and locked into the ideas from the 60′s — both the 1960s and the Marxist 1860s. In that sense he is an intellectual dwarf, frozen in the equivalent of a state of intellectual puberty. His “knowledge” is based on nothing but the discredited ideologies of Socialism.

The claim that Obama is the smartest man to ever hold presidential office is absurd and a reflection on the state of our media who insist on propping up this man-child. Obama’s obsession with keeping his college records and personal past secret is prima facie evidence that the claim is untrue. His knowledge base and dismal performance on the world stage is even more damning.

Instead of having a superior intellect, we likely have the most ignorant, ideological, brainwashed dupe this country has ever elected to high office. The man’s intellectual development never progressed beyond the stage of all-night freshman bull sessions where all the world’s problems were solved (with help from adequate amounts of beer of course).

This intellectual pygmy must be removed from office by whatever possible peaceful means. Impeachment is in order, but will not happen. Thus the 2012 election is critical.

The Democrat Party knows what happened in 2010. They also know that they have an albatross at the top of their ticket. It is likely they will turn on this poseur before the election. If so, this act will be their most significant public service in years.

Read the full article at the site. It’s all that good.

UPDATE:

Mediaite: John Boehner Reacts To Obama’s Social Security Remark: Way Too Early For ‘Veiled Threats’

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