Obama administration officials threatened whistle-blowers on Benghazi, lawyer says

Obama administration officials threatened whistle-blowers on Benghazi, lawyer says

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Published April 29, 2013

FoxNews.com

At least four career officials at the State Department and the Central Intelligence Agency have retained lawyers or are in the process of doing so, as they prepare to provide sensitive information about the Benghazi attacks to Congress, Fox News has learned.

Victoria Toensing, a former Justice Department official and Republican counsel to the Senate Intelligence Committee, is now representing one of the State Department employees. She told Fox News her client and some of the others, who consider themselves whistle-blowers, have been threatened by unnamed Obama administration officials.

“I’m not talking generally, I’m talking specifically about Benghazi – that people have been threatened,” Toensing said in an interview Monday. “And not just the State Department. People have been threatened at the CIA.”

Toensing declined to name her client. She also refused to say whether the individual was on the ground in Benghazi on the night of Sept. 11, 2012, when terrorist attacks on two U.S. installations in the Libyan city killed four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens.

However, Toensing disclosed that her client has pertinent information on all three time periods investigators consider relevant to the attacks: the months that led up to the attack, when pleas by the ambassador and his staff for enhanced security in Benghazi were mostly rejected by senior officers at the State Department; the eight-hour time frame in which the attacks unfolded, and the eight-day period that followed the attacks, when Obama administration officials incorrectly described them as the result of a spontaneous protest over a video.

“It’s frightening, and they’re doing some very despicable threats to people,” she said. “Not ‘we’re going to kill you,’ or not ‘we’re going to prosecute you tomorrow,’ but they’re taking career people and making them well aware that their careers will be over [if they cooperate with congressional investigators].”

Federal law provides explicit protections for federal government employees who are identified as “whistle-blowers.” The laws aim to ensure these individuals will not face repercussions from their superiors, or from other quarters, in retaliation for their provision of information about corruption or other forms of wrongdoing to Congress, or to an agency’s inspector-general.

Rep. Darrell Issa, the Republican from California who chairs the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, wrote to Secretary of State John Kerry on Friday to complain that the department has not provided a process by which attorneys like Toensing can receive the security clearances necessary for them to review classified documents and other key evidence.

“It is unavoidable that Department employees identifying themselves as witnesses in the Committee’s investigation will apply for a security clearance to allow their personal attorneys to handle sensitive or classified material,” Issa wrote. “The Department’s unwillingness to make the process for clearing an attorney more transparent appears to be an effort to interfere with the rights of employees to furnish information to Congress.”

The Obama administration maintains that it has been more than forthcoming on Benghazi and that it is time for the State Department to move on. At a recent hearing before the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Kerry noted that administration officials have testified at eight hearings on Benghazi, provided 20 briefings on the subject and turned over to Congress some 25,000 documents related to the killings.

“So if you have additional questions or you think there’s some document that somehow you need, I’ll work with you to try to get it and see if we can provide that to you,” Kerry told committee Chairman Rep. Ed Royce, R-Calif., on April 17. But Kerry added: “I do not want to spend the next year coming up here talking about Benghazi.”

Asked about Issa’s complaints about attorneys not receiving security clearances, State Department spokesman Patrick Ventrell on Monday indicated that – far from threatening anyone – the administration hasn’t been presented with any such cases. “I’m not aware of private counsel seeking security clearances or — or anything to that regard,” Ventrell told reporters. “I’m not aware of whistle-blowers one way or another.”

Ventrell cited the work of the FBI – whose probe of the attacks continues almost eight months later and without any known instances of perpetrators being brought to justice – and the Accountability Review Board. The board was an internal State Department review panel led by former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Thomas Pickering and former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen. An unclassified version of the board’s final report that was released to the public contained no conclusions that suggested administration officials had willfully endangered their colleagues in Benghazi or had misled the public or Congress.

“And that should be enough,” Ventrell said at Monday’s press briefing. “Congress has its own prerogatives, but we’ve had a very thorough, independent investigation, which we completed and [which was] transparent and shared. And there are many folks who are, in a political manner, trying to sort of use this for their own political means, or ends.”

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/04/29/obama-administration-officials-have-threatened-whistle-blowers-on-benghazi/#ixzz2Rthf3qpM

Obama arming al-Qaeda in Syria. MSM ignores

http://www.veteranstoday.com/2013/04/01/cia-and-us-military-fight-under-al-qaeda-command-in-syria/.

 

What we know is that the weapons that this young man is accused of using came through Turkey; they were supplied by NATO, there is no question about this, the group is claimed by the United States…. if you want to accuse him of something he could just as easily have been arrested if he’d failed to shoot at Syrian army helicopters. I have no idea what the crime is here other than it appears that the CIA and FBI don’t know what each of them is doing. Which by the way it’s not the first time that that’s happened.”

An intelligence analyst says the recent FBI arrest of US soldier and alleged CIA agent, Eric Harroun, for joining foreign-backed militants in Syria is a mockery of US operations as it shows the CIA and FBI’s disunity.

The comment comes as Harroun’s father Darryl says his son was serving the CIA in Syria and reporting back to the Agency from the country.

He says his son, who was arrested and charged with conspiracy on Wednesday for fighting with al-Qaeda-linked militants, is extremely patriotic and would not join militants.

However, the FBI affidavit mentioned no word of Harroun working for the CIA.

Harroun, 30, was arrested upon arriving at Dulles International Airport in Virginia, after fighting with the notorious al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front in Syria since January.

The detained soldier has confessed to shooting 10 people and using a rocket-propelled grenade while in Syria and being involved in downing a Syrian chopper. He is also charged with plotting to use a weapon of mass destruction outside the US.

Press TV has conducted an interview with American intelligence analyst Gurdon Duff in Ohio to further discuss the issue. What follows is an approximate transcription of the interview.

Press TV: How likely is this? What the father of this young man is saying that basically he doesn’t even understand what’s going on because his son was working for the CIA?

Duff: I have very well doubted his son was at least in contact with the CIA. Within these special operations in the US and with the publication that represent that community at least two companies that are owned by close friends are operating in that area, working for the CIA in support of the same groups that are now said to be al-Qaeda.

So we have two problems, one that we have Americans exactly like the one arrested directly in the employment of the CIA, organizations that are working there I can name these people, operational security prevents it unless of course someone decided I had to go to court and testify for him which I would be able to do.

I also know the US delta force operating in Jordan, the US Special Forces in support of this same organization that they are now saying if al-Qaeda…

Press TV: Gordon what exactly does that mean? If what you are saying is true that the same organization that the state department and the US government in general is saying is al-Qaeda-linked but you are saying that you have sources that you know, that some military units or intelligence units of the United States are involved with this group. What exactly does that mean?

Duff: These people are personal friends. I talk to them on a regular basis. I know where they are. I know what they are doing. Additionally the Israeli government openly admits that it is giving at least medical aid, we know much more than that to this same group that is now calling itself al-Qaeda.

Plus we have two issues in the US. Until a couple of days ago the Obama administration denied that there were al-Qaeda operatives operating in Syria and it was our opposition party in the US that was accusing the president of supporting al-Qaeda in Syria, the insanity of this is almost unparalleled because how can someone know what group is al-Qaeda or not?

What we know is that the weapons that this young man is accused of using came through Turkey; they were supplied by NATO, there is no question about this, the group is claimed by the United States, if you want to accuse him of something he could just as easily have been arrested if he’d failed to shoot at Syrian army helicopters.

I have no idea what the crime is here other than it appears that the CIA and FBI don’t know what each of them is doing. Which by the way it’s not the first time that that’s happened.

Benghazi attackers MUST be taken alive.

The Piratearian

President Obamas recent security leak that he is garnering resources to “Kill” those responsible for the Benghazi attacks ( http://news.antiwar.com/2012/10/15/obama-orders-drones-special-ops-on-standby-to-kill-benghazi-attack-suspects/ ) must not be allowed.
With the White House changing it’s story at every turn, it is imperative that those responsible are taken captive if possible, interrogated and put on trial.
This will allow us to determine A: are they associated with Al Qaeda? B: What were their motives in the embassy attack (Was it to kill the ambassador or kidnap him?) and C: Determine who assisted them in their efforts.
This will put a stop to the media spin by the White House and by Obama’s “Intelligence” Czar James Clapper.
We cannot allow President Obama to act as judge jury and executioner in a country we are not at war with.
We want the truth and that will only be found with witnesses and a proper investigation.

Benghazi-Gate Timeline: What the White House Knew & The Lies Told When They Knew It

Late yesterday afternoon, in an obvious attempt to rescue President Obama from what could and should be a brutal round of Sunday shows examining the cover up the White House is currently engaged in with respect to the sacking of our consulate in Libya, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) released a statement revising its assessment of the attack. It is now the official position of the American intelligence community that what happened in Benghazi was a pre-planned terrorist attack.

The statement comes from Shawn Turner, director of public affairs for National Intelligence — the office that speaks for the intelligence community as a whole:

As we learned more about the attack, we revised our initial assessment to reflect new information indicating that it was a deliberate and organized terrorist attack carried out by extremists. It remains unclear if any group or person exercised overall command and control of the attack, and if extremist group leaders directed their members to participate.

This is not news. In the last few days, the White House and State Department have both made statements saying exactly that.

This, however, is news and should be read carefully:

In the immediate aftermath, there was information that led us to assess that the attack began spontaneously following protests earlier that day at our embassy in Cairo. We provided that initial assessment to Executive Branch officials and members of Congress, who used that information to discuss the attack publicly and provide updates as they became available. Throughout our investigation we continued to emphasize that information gathered was preliminary and evolving.

There’s no question that what we have here is the DNI (Obama appointee James Clapper) attempting to fall on his sword and to put an end to the drumbeat of scandal coming mostly from Republicans and right-of-center media. What’s been exposed just weeks before a presidential election, is the fact that in the aftermath of the Benghazi attack, the White House and State Department knowingly misled and lied to the American people about what they knew and when they knew it.

But what the DNI statement is really meant to do is muddy the waters.

via Benghazi-Gate Timeline: What the White House Knew & The Lies Told When They Knew It.