by Tom Fitton –
With the news this week of the unprecedented spying on Americans by the National Security Agency under President Obama’s direction, it has become even more critical that we get to the truth about any Obama administration surveillance of Donald Trump and his campaign and the subsequent illegal leaking of classified information in an effort to undermine the Trump administration.
We filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Justice and the National Security Agency (NSA) for information about Obama National Security Advisor Susan Rice’s communications with the two agencies concerning the alleged Russian involvement in the 2016 presidential election, the hacking of DNC computers, the suspected communications between Russia and Trump campaign/transition officials, and the unmasking of the identities of any U.S. citizens associated with the Trump presidential campaign or transition team who were identified pursuant to intelligence collection activities (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Justice and National Security Administration (No. 1:17-cv-01002)).
You can see our FOIA request forms the basis for the new lawsuit and is comprehensive:
1. Any and all requests for information, analyses, summaries, assessments, transcripts, or similar records submitted to the Department of Justice (National Security Agency) or any official, employee, or representative thereof by former National Security Advisor Susan Rice regarding, concerning, or related to the following:
• Any actual or suspected effort by the Russian government or any individual acting on behalf of the Russian government to influence or otherwise interfere with the 2016 presidential election;
• The alleged hacking of computer systems utilized by the Democratic National Committee and/or the Clinton presidential campaign;
• Any or actual or suspected communication between any member of the Trump presidential campaign or transition team and any official or employee of the Russian government or any individual acting on behalf of the Russian government; or
• The identities of U.S. citizens associated with the Trump presidential campaign or transition team who were identified pursuant to intelligence collection activities.
2. Any and all records created and/or produced in response to any request described in part 1 of this request; and
3. Any and all records of communication between any official, employee, or representative of the Department of Justice (National Security Agency) and any member, employee, staff member, or representative of the National Security Council regarding, concerning, or related to any request described in Part 1 of this request.
The time frame for this request is January 1, 2016, to the present.
This is the fifth Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit (see here, here, here and here) related to the surveillance, unmasking, and illegal leaking targeting President Trump and his associates. I am confident our investigation is more comprehensive than anything out of Congress, or from the new “special counsel” (see below) in the Justice Department.
We want to know about the Obama White House involvement in the unprecedented spying on Donald Trump and other political opponents. This intelligence operation may have led to the illegal “unmasking” of Americans and the leaking of intelligence information to foment the story of Russian hacking of the DNC and the allegedly sinister Russian influence on Trump and his associates. The Trump administration has an opportunity to expose what the Obama White House was up to – let’s hope it follows the law and starts turning records over to JW quickly in response to our outstanding FOIA requests.
Mueller Helped Purge Anti-Terrorism Training Material Offensive to Muslims
Washington, DC is a political petri dish, and few are immune from the infection it spawns. So, when you hear a political operative described as “nonpartisan” or of “the highest character,” you should secure your proverbial wallet.
For instance, the Russia “special counsel” Robert Mueller, the FBI director for more than a decade, is supposedly the best Washington has to offer. However, our Corruption Chronicles blog reminds us he deserves much closer scrutiny:
Now that Robert Mueller has been appointed special counsel to investigate if Russia influenced the 2016 presidential election it’s worth reiterating his misguided handiwork and collaboration with radical Islamist organizations as FBI director. Judicial Watch exclusively obtained droves of records back in 2013 documenting how, under Mueller’s leadership, the FBI purged all anti-terrorism training material deemed “offensive” to Muslims after secret meetings between Islamic organizations and the FBI chief. Judicial Watch had to sue to get the records and published an in-depth report on the scandal in 2013 and a lengthier, updated follow-up in 2015.
As FBI director, Mueller bent over backwards to please radical Islamist groups and caved into their demands. The agency eliminated the valuable anti-terrorism training material and curricula after Mueller met with various Islamist organizations, including those with documented ties too terrorism. Among them were two organizations— Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) and Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR)—named by the U.S. government as unindicted co-conspirators in the 2007 Holy Land Foundation terrorist financing case. CAIR is a terrorist front group with extensive links to foreign and domestic Islamists. It was founded in 1994 by three Middle Eastern extremists (Omar Ahmad, Nihad Awad and Rafeeq Jaber) who ran the American propaganda wing of Hamas, known then as the Islamic Association for Palestine.
The records obtained as part of Judicial Watch’s lawsuit show that Mueller, who served 12 years as FBI chief, met with the Islamist organizations on February 8, 2012, to hear their demands. Shortly after the director assured the Muslim groups that he had ordered the removal of presentations and curricula on Islam from FBI offices nationwide. The purge was part of a broader Islamist operation designed to influence the opinions and actions of persons, institutions, governments and the public at-large. The records obtained by Judicial Watch also show similar incidents of Islamic influence operations at the Departments of Justice and State, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the Obama White House.
Here are some of the reasons provided by Mueller’s FBI for getting rid of “offensive” training documents: “Article is highly inflammatory and inaccurately argues the Muslim Brotherhood is a terrorist organization.” It’s crucial to note that Mueller himself had previously described the Muslim Brotherhood as a group that supports terrorism in the U.S. and overseas when his agency provided this ludicrous explanation. Here’s more training material that offended the terrorist groups, according to the FBI files provided to Judicial Watch: An article claiming Al Qaeda is “clearly linked” to the 1993 World Trade Center Bombing; The Qur’an is not the teachings of the Prophet, but the revealed word of God; Sweeping generality of ‘Those who fit the terrorist profile best (for the present at least) are young male immigrants of Middle Eastern appearance;’ conflating Islamic Militancy with terrorism. The list goes on and on.
Mueller’s actions have had a widespread effect because many local law enforcement agencies followed the FBI’s lead in allowing Islamic groups like CAIR to dictate what anti-terrorism material could be used to train officers. Among them are police departments in three Illinois cities— Lombard, Elmhurst and Highland Park—as well as the New York Police Department (NYPD). In the case of the Lombard Police Department, CAIR asserted that the instructor of a training course called “Islamic Awareness as a Counter-Terrorist Strategy” was anti-Muslim though there was no evidence to support it. Like the FBI, Lombard officials got rid of the “offensive” course. The NYPD purged a highly acclaimed report that’s proven to be a critical tool in terrorism investigations after three New York Muslims, two mosques and an Islamic nonprofit filed a lawsuit.
Considering Mueller’s role in much of this, it makes him a bizarre choice to lead the heated Russia investigation. The goal, apparently, is to determine if Russia interfered in the 2016 presidential election and if President Donald Trump’s campaign colluded with Russian officials. In the Justice Department announcement, Deputy Attorney General Rod J. Rosenstein describes Mueller as person who qualifies to lead the probe because he exercises a degree of independence from the normal chain of command. “Special Counsel Mueller will have all appropriate resources to conduct a thorough and complete investigation, and I am confident that he will follow the facts, apply the law and reach a just result,” according to Rosenstein.
The Seth Rich Controversy
At 4:19 a.m. on July 10 last year, Seth Rich, a 27-year-old employee of the Democratic National Committee, was shot twice in the back close to his D.C. home. His watch, iPhone and wallet were not taken.
The police called it a botched robbery, but Fox News reported that Rich had been Wikileaks’ source of Hillary Clinton emails. Subsequently, Fox, facing pressure from Rich’s family and attacks from the Left, later retracted the story.
I know a lot of you are asking questions about what we are doing to investigate the controversy surrounding Rich’s death. So I want to inform you that we filed Freedom of Information Act requests with the FBI, the DC police department and the DC mayor’s office last week.
We also have an FBI request pending from last year, and, of course, separately we are asking questions under the federal Freedom of Information Act about the DNC hack itself.
You can trust us to get to the bottom of this issue – or at least ask the questions in a sensible way – and to get the documents directly so that you and the American people can figure out whether there’s something more than meets the eye.
Whatever the outcome, you can’t trust the media to do it, you can’t trust Congress to do it – but you can trust Judicial Watch to ask the tough questions and demand honest answers.
Honoring the Fallen Warriors on Memorial Day
General John A. Logan, then-Commander-Chief of the Grand Army of the Republic, began what became our nation’s Memorial Day observance with his issuance of General Orders No. 11, an 1868 proclamation that called for a day of remembrance of the Civil War dead. To do partial justice to General Logan’s patriotism, I present to you the full text of his May 5, 1868 proclamation:
GENERAL ORDERS No. 11
I. The 30th day of May, 1868 is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet churchyard in the land. In this observance no form or ceremony is prescribed, but posts and comrades will in their own way arrange such fitting services and testimonials of respect as circumstances may permit. We are organized, comrades, as our regulations tell us, for the purpose, among other things, “of preserving and strengthening those kind and fraternal feelings which have bound together the soldiers, sailors and marines who united to suppress the late rebellion.” What can aid more to assure this result than by cherishing tenderly the memory of our heroic dead who made their breasts a barricade between our country and its foes? Their soldier lives were the reveille of freedom to a race in chains and their deaths the tattoo of rebellious tyranny in arms. We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance. All that the consecrated wealth and taste of the nation can add to their adornment and security is but a fitting tribute to the memory of her slain defenders. Let no wanton foot tread rudely on such hallowed grounds. Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and fond mourners. Let no vandalism of avarice or neglect, no ravages of time, testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten, as a people, the cost of a free and undivided republic.
If other eyes grow dull and other hands slack, and other hearts cold in the solemn trust, ours shall keep it well as long as the light and warmth of life remains in us. Let us, then, at the time appointed, gather around their sacred remains and garland the passionless mounds above them with choicest flowers of springtime; let us raise above them the dear old flag they saved from dishonor; let us in this solemn presence renew our pledges to aid and assist those whom they have left among us as sacred charges upon the nation’s gratitude—the soldier’s and sailor’s widow and orphan.
II. It is the purpose of the commander in chief to inaugurate this observance with the hope that it will be kept up from year to year, while a survivor of the war remains to honor the memory of his departed comrades. He earnestly desires the public press to call attention to this order, and lend its friendly aid in bringing it to the notice of comrades in all parts of the country in time for simultaneous compliance therewith.
III. Department commanders will use every effort to make this order effective.
By Command of –
John A. Logan,
Commander in Chief
N.P. Chipman, Adjutant General
Thank the Lord that our nation has fulfilled General Logan’s hope and kept up this observance “year to year” for 149 years!
God bless those who have died in service of our country and God bless America!
Tom Fitton – President