Propaganda video was removed from YouTube after more than 20 minutes
by JESSICA TESTA | BUZZFEED | AUGUST 19, 2014
The video, uploaded to YouTube on Tuesday, includes about a minute and a half of President Obama announcing his recent authorization of targeted airstrikes and a humanitarian operation in Iraq.
Around the two minute mark, a man believed to be James Wright Foley, 40, delivers a statement: “I call on my friends, family and loved ones to rise up against my real killers: the U.S. government.” He then addresses his brother John, a member of the U.S. Air Force, at length. After about two minutes and 20 seconds, he is beheaded.
Two people who know Foley said the man in the video appears to be him, and that the voice sounds like his. His family did not respond immediately to an inquiry about the video.
Foley, a freelance photojournalist, and his translater were kidnapped in Binesh, Syria, in Novermber 2012. According to the FBI, his translator was later released.
The propaganda video was removed from YouTube after more than 20 minutes.
Leader of militant group pictured coordinating with police
by PAUL JOSEPH WATSON | AUGUST 18, 2014
A combination of the Department of Justice, Communist agitators and members of the radical New Black Panther party have descended on Ferguson, Missouri to hijack what were largely peaceful protests that have turned increasingly violent in recent days.
Black Panther Leader Malik Shabazz was recorded leading a group of protesters in a chant aimed at Darren Wilson, the officer that shot 18-year-old Michael Brown. “What do we want?” asks Shabazz, to which the crowd responds, “Darren Wilson.” “How do we want him?” asks Shabazz. While some in the crowd respond with “indicted,” others are heard to chant, “dead!”
While many, including members of the original Black Panthers, regard the New Black Panthers as a divisive, militant and occasionally violent organization, police in Ferguson seemingly have no problem working with the group, as shown in the image below of Captain Ronald Johnson coordinating with Shabazz.
According to the SPLC, Shabazz’ description as a “community organizer” belies the fact that he is a “racist black nationalist with a long, well-documented history of violently anti-Semitic remarks and accusations about the inherent evil of white people,” and is “particularly skilled at orchestrating provocative protests.”
Shabazz’ involvement with Johnson is strange given that the FBI simultaneously issued a warning that New Black Panthers had arrived in the area and were “advocating violence against police.” Another member of the group, Chawn Kweli, also posted an incendiary message on Facebook which stated, “This is the hour all the greats promised. If you die, die like a warrior. I’ll see you on the ground.”
Members of the New Black Panthers have been caught working undercover for the federal government in the past, with the most recent example being Richard Aoki, who was outed as an FBI informant in 2012.
Even more intriguing is the involvement of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, which has inserted itself into the investigation of Brown’s death at the behest of Attorney General Eric Holder.
The Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division has proven sympathetic to the New Black Panthers in the past. In 2010, a whistleblower who worked with the Civil Rights Division blasted the DOJ for dismissing its case against the New Black Panther Party after members of the group intimidated voters outside a Philadelphia polling location during the 2008 presidential election.
The New Black Panther party is not a successor to the original Black Panther Party. Members of the original organization have repeatedly distanced themselves from the new group and have insisted it is “illegitimate.”
New Black Panther radicals have been joined in Missouri by Revolution Club Chicago, a Communist group that calls for a global revolution in order to bring down capitalism. Respondents to the group’s Facebook page aren’t buying the rhetoric, accusing the organization of being, “Communist agitators seeking to incite a race war in Ferguson.”
According to observers, members of the communist group have been responsible for some of the violence.
“There’s a lot of buzz on the ground about a communist group that was bussed into Ferguson from Chicago,” reports the News Commenter. “They provoked the police with Molotov cocktails the night of August 13th while the local protesters peacefully protested. That’s when police responded with gas and flash grenades. Their reported goal is to make the protests go super-violent, spread across the region, and spark a revolution. They are said to visibly stand out from the local protesters in how they respond to police and intimidate reporters when photos and video are taken of them.”
Members of the group are also reportedly seen lighting molotov cocktails in the photo here.
“So, you’ve got white Chicago Communists and the uber racist New Black Panthers fomenting chaos, violence and rioting. You’ve got the DOJ on the ground and in the mix and praying for an excuse to declare martial law,” writes Terresa Monroe-Hamilton.
As we reported earlier, many have questioned whether some of the violence seen in recent days is the work of provocateurs being allowed to run riot by the authorities in order to justify the militarized crackdown after reports that police were ordered to “stand down” during looting on Friday night. After two further nights of violent unrest, Governor Jay Nixon ordered National Guard troops be dispatched to Ferguson to quell the unrest.
A newspaper photographer who has covered the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan said that the scene Sunday night in Ferguson, Missouri “was the most unpredictable” he’s witnessed.
David Carson, who takes pictures for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, showed up to Ferguson on Sunday, a day after a police officer fatally shot 18-year-old Michael Brown.
Brown was unarmed, and witnesses to his shooting say that he was surrendering as an officer opened fire. Authorities claim that Brown assaulted the officer and struggled for the cop’s service weapon.
While the police investigate, Ferguson residents and some outsiders from surrounding areas began protesting the incident. Bystanders and social media users voiced frustration that the shooting was racially motivated, as Brown is black.
Demonstrations began shortly after the shooting on Saturday and were peaceful at first. But the presence of police dogs and military-grade vehicles fueled the anger of the gathered crowd as well as many of those watching the scene unfold on social media.
The crowd turned violent Sunday night.
“He’s taking pictures,” a group yelled toward Carson as he was capturing the scene near a QuikTrip convenience store. “Get him. Kick his ass,” the group said, according to the Post-Dispatch.
Though he turned to run toward police, who were gathered a quarter-mile away, Carson’s military-grade war gear, his helmet, cameras and other photography equipment slowed him down.
He had picked up the equipment from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s “war closet,” he told Poynter. The contents of the closet have only been used for dispatches to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, where Carson worked two month-long stints, in Iraq in 2004 and Afghanistan in 2006.
The group chasing Carson caught up to him about 150 yards from a line of police officers. He was hit in the side of the head and fell, breaking one of his cameras.
But Carson resumed taking photos, capturing the looting taking place at the QuikTrip. Other stores in the St. Louis suburb were looted as well, including a Ross Dress for Less, AutoZone, a beauty supply store and grocery stores. Shots were also heard fired throughout the melee.
Brave enough to venture inside the store as it was being picked clean of groceries, lottery tickets and beer, Carson took pictures of a man who he said outweighed him by 100 pounds.
“What are you doing?” the man asked Carson, as he raised his shirt to expose a gun.
“I’m taking pictures,”Carson said, according to the Post-Dispatch. “Your face is covered. You’ll be fine.”
The man was satisfied with the answer and moved on.
The night ended with 32 arrests and two police officers wounded. On Monday, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced that the FBI will be reviewing Brown’s death for possible civil rights violations.
One of the Department of Homeland Security’s key contractors says a “state-sponsored” cyber attack is responsible for stealing the personal information of numerous government employees.
In the wake of the attack, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has put its work with the contractor on hold while the FBI investigates the situation.
According to the Washington Post, the company in question is called USIS, and is responsible for performing background checks on potential DHS employees, as well as those who need to acquire the necessary security clearances. Notably, it conducted background checks for former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, as well as Aaron Alexis, the man responsible for the 2013 Navy Yard shooting in Washington DC.
So far, it is unknown exactly how much information was stolen or how many people were affected, but officials told the newspaper that they don’t think anyone outside of DHS had their records taken. At least one other department isn’t taking any chances, though. The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) has also stopped working with USIS for the time being.
“Our forensic analysis has concluded that some DHS personnel may have been affected, and DHS has notified its entire workforce” of the incident, Homeland Security spokesman Peter Boogaard said to the Post. “We are committed to ensuring our employees’ privacy and are taking steps to protect it.”
For its part, the company said it notified all the agencies it works with of the security breach as soon as it was discovered, and it is cooperating with OPM and DHS to address the situation.
Although USIS said the hack “has all the markings of a state-sponsored attack,” it did not offer any details on where the breach originated. Some officials told the Post that it was not linked to a similar incident that occurred in March, which was eventually connected to China. In that case, the OPM’s databases were targeted, but no personal data was stolen thanks to encryption. US officials have blamed multiple attacks on Beijing in the past.
House of Representatives Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) said he would ask the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee to launch an investigation into the incident, while Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.) called it “very troubling news.”
“Americans’ personal information should always be secure, particularly when our national security is involved. An incident like this is simply unacceptable,” he added.
News of the security breach comes just one day after Wisconsin-based Hold Security announced that 1.2 billion usernames and passwords were stolen by a crime ring operating out of Russia. The haul, which also included more than 500 million email addresses, was taken from roughly 42,000 different websites across the internet, marking the largest security breach the company had ever seen.
“Hackers did not just target US companies, they targeted any website they could get, ranging from Fortune 500 companies to very small websites,” Hold Security founder Alex Holden told The New York Times. “And most of these sites are still vulnerable.”
FBI tops list as number one instigator of terror threats
by KURT NIMMO | INFOWARS.COM | AUGUST 4, 2014
The National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START), a University of Maryland project funded by the Department of Homeland Security, has designated the so-called sovereign citizen movement as the number one domestic terrorist threat in America.
Sovereign citizens do not constitute a cohesive movement, although the government characterizes them as such. The Southern Poverty Law Center estimates around 100,000 Americans were “hard-core sovereign believers” in 2010 and an additional 200,000 were “just starting out by testing sovereign techniques for resisting everything from speeding tickets to drug charges.”
The SPLC works with the DHS to formulate the terrorist threat posed by citizens allegedly belonging to the sovereign citizen movement.
According to a report by issued by START last month, “sovereign citizens were the top concern of law sovereign enforcement” and ranked ahead of neo-Nazis, the KKK, the patriot movement, and other “idiosyncratic sectarians,” including survivalists, all who allegedly pose a threat to the police and the state according to a survey conducted by the Homeland Security funded organization.
Information detailing the alleged terrorist threat was collected from state and local fusion centers, the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force, the DHS, BATF, DEA, ICE, and state and local homeland security and anti-terrorism task forces.
“The 2013-14 study results show that law enforcement’s top concern is sovereign citizens. Although Islamic extremists remain a major concern for law enforcement, they are no longer their top concern,” the START report states. According to the organization, threats posed by sovereign citizens include cyberterrorism, the use of explosive devices, military weapons, and biological, chemical and radiological weapons.
The report recommends state and federal law enforcement share intelligence data on targeted groups, develop “tactical responses” to threats and “act on that information to prevent or mitigate threats.”
“The FBI considers sovereign-citizen extremists as comprising a domestic terrorist movement, which, scattered across the United States, has existed for decades, with well-known members, such as Terry Nichols, who helped plan the Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, bombing,” an FBI law enforcement bulletin issued in September, 2011, states.
FBI Responsible for Domestic Terror Plots
In 2007 Terry Nichols implicated the FBI in the OKC bombing. In an affidavit filed in a lawsuit brought by Salt Lake City attorney Jesse Trentadue, Nichols states that Timothy McVeigh “revealed the identity of a high-ranking FBI official who was apparently directing McVeigh in the bomb plot.”
“The filing was quickly sealed by a Utah district court, but not before the Deseret Morning News identified the accused FBI provocateur as Larry Potts. Trentadue dropped the bombshell that Attorney General’s Ashcroft’s office gagged Nichols from speaking to the media after it became apparent that McVeigh’s accomplices and government ties to the bombing were in danger of leaking,” Joel Skousen’s World Affairs Brief reported on February 23, 2007.
The START report also neglects to mention that virtually all high-profile domestic terrorism plots in the United States after 9/11 were directed by the FBI and the U.S. government, a fact reported by The New York Times.
The government “targeted people who do not appear to have been involved in terrorist plotting or financing at the time the government began to investigate them. And many of the cases involve due process violations and abusive conditions of confinement that have resulted in excessively long prison sentences,” Human Rights Watch reported last month.
The Obama Administration’s Orwellian government employee snitch network, dubbed the “Insider Threat Program,” first made headlines about a year ago.
By Scott Higham July 23
In early April, Sen. Charles E. Grassley summoned FBI officials to his Capitol Hill office. He said he wanted them to explain how a program designed to uncover internal security threats would at the same time protect whistleblowers who wanted to report wrongdoing within the bureau.
The meeting with two FBI officials, including the chief of the bureau’s Insider Threat Program, ended almost as soon as it began. The officials said the FBI would protect whistleblowers by “registering” them. When Grassley’s staff members asked them to elaborate, the FBI officials declined to answer any more questions and headed for the door.
“We’re leaving,” said J. Christopher McDonough, an FBI agent assigned to the bureau’s congressional affairs office, said Senate staff members who attended the meeting.
The episode infuriated Grassley (Iowa), a leading advocate for whistleblowers in Congress and the ranking Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee. Any effort to register whistleblowers, he said, would “clearly put a target on their backs.”
The Insider Threat Program and a continuous monitoring initiative under consideration in the intelligence community were begun by the Obama administration after the leaks of classified information by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden and Army Pvt. Chelsea Manning, and the Navy Yard shootings by Aaron Alexis, who used his security clearance to gain access to the base.
The programs are designed to prevent leaks of classified information by monitoring government computers and employees’ behavior.
Grassley said the episode with the FBI illustrates how federal agencies are setting up internal security programs without giving careful consideration to whether they could dissuade whistleblowers from coming forward.
“The Insider Threat Program has the potential for taking the legs out from underneath all of the whistleblower protections we have,” Grassley said in a recent interview.
Greg Klein, the head of the FBI’s Insider Threat Program, and McDonough, the congressional affairs agent, did not return calls seeking comment. An FBI spokesman said the bureau does not plan to register whistleblowers. He said there was a misunderstanding about the nature of the briefing with staff members for Grassley, Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick J. Leahy (D-Vt.) and a law enforcement official who is assigned to the Senate panel. The spokesman noted that the FBI has a whistleblower training program for employees and a whistleblower protection office.
“We recognize the importance of protecting the rights of whistleblowers,” FBI spokesman Paul Bresson said.
Grassley is part of a growing chorus of lawmakers on Capitol Hill and attorneys for whistleblowers who warn that the Insider Threat Program and the potential intelligence community initiative threaten to undermine federal workers’ ability to report wrongdoing without retaliation.
Together, the programs cover millions of federal workers and contractors at every government agency.
In February, Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper Jr. testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee that a system was being considered to continuously monitor the behavior of employees with security clearances “on the job as well as off the job.”
A senior intelligence official said a continuous monitoring program, mandated under the Intelligence Authorization Act and signed into law by President Obama on July 7, is being set up and initially will include federal employees who hold top-secret security clearances. The official said there are no plans to monitor employees after hours while they are using non-government computer systems.
“I think it’s time to put up the caution light here,” said Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee.
While Wyden included a provision in the most recent Intelligence Authorization Act that would prohibit retaliation against whistleblowers, he said he remains concerned about the impact of the threat programs.
“This really has the potential for abuse, and I think it could have a chilling effect on the public’s right to know and effective oversight of our government,” Wyden said.
Dan Meyer, the head of the Intelligence Community Whistleblowing & Source Protection program, created last year as part of the Office of Intelligence Community Inspector General, said he is working to ensure that employees who want to report wrongdoing can do so anonymously and without reprisal.
“The critical thing is to maintain confidentiality,” Meyer said. He said he is preparing training materials for intelligence officers and spreading the word that employees can come to him anonymously through third parties.
If an employee has verifiable information about wrongdoing, a presidential directive takes effect, providing employees with protection against retaliation.
“We are in the process of making a systematic, cultural change and getting everyone on board,” Meyer said.
After Manning’s disclosures to WikiLeaks four years ago, Obama signed Executive Order 13587, directing government agencies to assess how they handle classified information. On Nov. 28, 2010, the Office of the National Counterintelligence Executive issued a memo to senior government agency officials, advising them to identify insider threats.
The memo suggested using psychiatrists and sociologists to assess changes in employees’ behavior.
“What metrics do you use to measure ‘trustworthiness’ without alienating employees?” the counterintelligence office asked the agency chiefs. “Do you use a psychiatrist or sociologist to measure: relative happiness as a means to gauge trustworthiness? Despondence and grumpiness as a means to gauge waning trustworthiness?”
“It will only increase hostility between the government and really serious federal employees who are trying to improve the system,” said Lynne Bernabei, a partner at Bernabei & Wachtel in Washington who has been representing whistleblowers for nearly 30 years. “Turning the security apparatus against its own people is not going to work.”
Whistleblower lawyers said they understand the need to protect classified information but think some of the new programs go too far.
“There are legitimate reasons for employers to be on the lookout for people who might be leaking classified information, but this will obviously have a chilling effect on employees who might want to blow the whistle,” said Jason Zuckerman, who served as the senior legal adviser to the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, the federal agency charged with protecting whistleblowers, and now represents whistleblowers nationwide.
Michael German, a former undercover FBI agent and whistleblower, called the Insider Threat Program a “dangerous” initiative.
“These agencies have long treated whistleblowers as security threats and this makes things even worse,” said German, now a senior national security fellow at the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law.
Mark S. Zaid, a lawyer who specializes in representing whistleblowers in the intelligence community and the military, said the administration is moving too quickly.
“They are using a very big net to catch a few small fish, and they are going to hurt a lot of good people in the process,” he said.
“In other words [the government is] assisting in the downfall of America..”
by ADAN SALAZAR | INFOWARS.COM | JULY 22, 2014
By leaving strategic areas along the southern U.S. border unprotected, and by using children as the face of the illegal immigrant surge to elicit public sympathy, the federal government is engaging in a sophisticated military tactic known as “asymmetrical warfare” against the American people, a former U.S. Border Patrol agent is warning.
Scroll to 11:44 for “asymmetrical warfare” reference (see transcript below). / Video courtesy of Little Bonanza Productions. For more information, please contact: email@example.com.
As the government allocates resources to South Texas, it is systematically leaving areas within the U.S., as well as vast swaths of land along the border, unguarded, outspoken former Tucson Sector Border Patrol agent Zach Taylor says in an excerpted clip taken from an upcoming documentary entitled, “Back to the Border.”
“This gives people that are trying to get their infrastructure, their personnel, their drugs, their dirty bombs, their biological weapons, their chemical weapons into the United States without being noticed” the opportunity to do so, “because this part of the border is open, it is not being controlled,” the 26-year Border Patrol veteran outlines in the extensive interview.
“If asymmetrical warfare is going to be successful, the first thing that has to be done is to compromise America’s defenses against invasion,” Taylor says, “because they have to have their personnel inside the United States to affect the infrastructure.. they have to affect the degeneration from inside the United States.”
The retired federal agent claims that by magnifying the mere ten percent of the influx that is apprehended, and by mostly centering on the one percent who are immigrant minors, the government is deliberately drawing attention away from the hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens who evade capture – who may or may not be harboring communicable diseases, or may or may not have gang affiliations.
In Central America, children as young as 10 join violent gangs, like MS-13, an intelligence report notes, and according to FBI statistics, many are initiated by having to commit murder.
“What the people don’t realize is that it is putting their own children at risk, because these children are going to be put in schools with their children,” Taylor says.
Taylor, who also serves as Chairman of the National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers, had previously made headlines for slamming the recent immigrant wave as an Obama administration-manufactured crisis.
“This is not a humanitarian crisis,” Taylor wrote in a press release last month. “It is a predictable, orchestrated and contrived assault on the compassionate side of Americans by her political leaders that knowingly puts minor Illegal Alien children at risk for purely political purposes. Certainly, we are not gullible enough to believe that thousands of unaccompanied minor Central American children came to America without the encouragement, aid and assistance of the United States Government.”
Below is a transcript of the portion of the video where Taylor explains how the immigration crisis is covert asymmetrical warfare aimed at the US public.
The whole idea of asymmetrical warfare is to defeat your enemy from within. It is not to attack him from without. Of course the threat comes from without, but they have to be inside of the US to effect a successful warfare strategy.
If asymmetrical warfare is going to be successful, the first thing that has to be done is to compromise America’s defenses against invasion, because they have to have their personnel inside the United States to affect the infrastructure: our hospitals, our schools, our electric grid, our power supplies our water supply – basically what we call “infrastructure.” All of those things create our infrastructure – but they have to affect the degeneration from inside the United States.
The markers that we’re seeing that indicate this is “asymmetrical warfare” is because the reaction that the United States is taking is they’re taking the opportunity of inviting these illegal aliens to come here, they’re concentrating them in one place in the United States, the Rio Grande Valley, and they’re drawing the resources that are protecting the rest of the US border to care for the illegal alien children, to help with the overflow of the minors, to transport, to take care of the needs of these people while they’re in Homeland Security custody.
All this takes the resources that are protecting America at the border, off of the border. So now the borders are wide open. This gives people that are trying to get their infrastructure, their personnel, their drugs, their dirty bombs, their biological weapons, their chemical weapons into the United States without being noticed because this part of the border is open, it is not being controlled.
It is a perfect military strategy. It doesn’t raise any eyebrows because we’re focused on the children, but we need to focus on our children, because this is asymmetrical warfare. Everything says it is. And the way the United States government is responding to it is concealing that fact from the American people.
In other words they’re assisting in the downfall of America, and you need to understand that.
June 23, 2014 By Jennifer Burke
Mexican soldiers are crossing the border into American and firing on United States citizens. Tucson based KVOA reported on this alarming trend earlier this year. Not only are these Mexican Army soldiers firing on American citizens, they are also challenging federal agents and border patrol. (Watch Video Below)
In January, soldiers from this lonely outpost of the Mexican Army drew their guns on U.S. Border Patrol agents just 50 yards into the United States. Then in March, they opened fire on Javier Jose Rodriguez, a young Tucson man visiting family in Sásabe when he was driving around the town early on a Saturday morning after drinking beers with friends. Rodriguez was shot in the arm and in the side, he spent three weeks at University of Arizona Medical Center.
These are but two instances of Mexican soldiers crossing the border, an act that has reportedly happened at least 300 times over the last 18 years. The federal government has had no real response to this troubling and dangerous trend. Although Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn requested answers from Homeland Security this Mexican Army invasion and attacks in early February, to date he has received no response.
Robert Ayers, a resident of Arivaca, describes the frightening experience that he had with Mexican soldiers who appeared late one night, landing in a helicopter behind his barn. Ayers said several men emerged from the helicopter, clad in black. The men were in full body armor, wearing masks over the faces and carried what appeared to be full automatic weapons.
Art del Cueto, President of the Border Patrol’s union in the Tucson Sector, Local 2544 said, “I mean, it’s very nerve-wracking. A lot of these encounters happen in the middle of the night where, you know, the lighting is low and you don’t know who you’re encountering. You’re sitting there and seeing a group of guys coming up to you and they’re all carrying long-arms, you don’t know what you’re encountering.” Cueto continued saying, “When you see our own government putting more emphasis on the rights of individuals who are in this country illegally already instead of trying to help out the agents and seeing these intrusions and taking them seriously, it’s very frustrating.”
By Larry O’Connor
No one from True The Vote, the highest profile organization targeted by the IRS in the scandal involving improper scrutiny of conservative-leaning non-profits, has been interviewed by the FBI or investigators from the Department of Justice, according to the group’s President, Catherine Engelbrecht.
This stunning revelation comes just days after Attorney General Eric Holder rebuffed the suggestion that an independent investigation is needed into the growing scandal. Holder told ABC News this weekend that a special investigation was unnecessary because “career people” and FBI agents were “doing a good, professional job” investigating the matter.
When I raised Holder’s assertion to Engelbrecht Monday morning during an interview on WMAL radio in Washington, DC, I asked her what her involvement and experience has been with the FBI and the DOJ, considering Holder’s claim that they were doing a “good and professional job” investigating the IRS scandal.
“That would be exactly ‘no.’ Zero. at no time have they approached us. Only when they are investigating us. Only when they are being adversarial towards us do we ever hear anything from the Department of Justice. There has been no outreach to try and get to the bottom of the scandal at any time. “
There is no doubt that for any serious and thorough investigation into the inappropriate and potentially illegal tactics used by the IRS in refusing to grant conservative groups a 501(c)4 non-profit status because of their perceived political leanings, Engelbrecht’s group would be one of the first to be interviewed.
True The Vote has been embroiled in much of the testimony and investigation in the House Oversight Committee, including an episode where Lois Lerner fed tax information to that committee’s ranking Democrat, Elijah Cummings’ office. In April, Townhall’s Katie Pavlich reported on the e-mail exchange:
New IRS emails released by the House Oversight Committee show staff working for Democratic Ranking Member Elijah Cummings communicated with the IRS multiple times between 2012 and 2013 about voter fraud prevention group True the Vote. True the Vote was targeted by the IRS after applying for tax exempt status more than two years ago. Further, information shows the IRS and Cummings’ staff asked for nearly identical information from True the Vote President Catherine Engelbrecht about her organization, indicating coordination and improper sharing of confidential taxpayer information.
Chairman of the House Oversight Committee Darrell Issa, along with five Subcommittee Chairmen are demanding Cummings provide an explanation for the staff inquiries to the IRS about True the Vote and for his denial that his staff ever contacted the IRS about the group.
“Although you have previously denied that your staff made inquiries to the IRS about conservative organization True the Vote that may have led to additional agency scrutiny, communication records between your staff and IRS officials – which you did not disclose to Majority Members or staff – indicates otherwise,” the letter to Cummings states. “As the Committee is scheduled to consider a resolution holding Ms. Lerner, a participant in responding to your communications that you failed to disclose, in contempt of Congress, you have an obligation to fully explain your staff’s undisclosed contacts with the IRS.
The revelation from Engelbrecht that her organization has not been interviewed or contacted by the DOJ at all in the 15 months since the IRS scandal first broke calls into question just how seriously Attorney General Holder is taking the investigation and will surely add to the growing number of voices calling for an independent investigation into the scandal that now includes missing e-mails, broken hard drives and a central figure pleading the 5th amendment.