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News Story

The NRA Guns for Atty. Gen. Holder

By Allan Lengel
for Salon.com

While an apologetic Attorney Gen. Eric Holder Jr. went before a Senate committee this week to talk about a failed gun-walking program, the National Rifle Association was gearing up its campaign to get Holder fired.

In a new, slick 1 minute and 55 second television ad flush with with Fox News footage, the NRA expressed outrage over the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearm’s gun-running operation known as Operation Fast and Furious. Under the supervision of ATF officials, the operation let guns get into the hands of criminals on both sides of the Mexican border. The NRA claimed Holder perjured himself before Congress and lied about what he knew about the operation and urged the White House to fire Holder. Holder has adamantly denied lying.

The NRA has honed in on Operation Fast and Furious in order to advance its agenda of undermining, not just Holder but the president. The misguided operation, run by ATF officials reporting to the Justice Department, encouraged Arizona gun dealers to sell weapons to “straw purchasers,” with the hopes of tracing the weapons to the Mexican cartels. ATF lost track of many of the guns, and some surfaced at crime scenes on both sides of the Mexican border including one involving the murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry last year in Arizona.

To read full story click here.

 

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

 

Better Late Than Never: Nixon Library to Release Nixon’s Grand Jury Testimony on Watergate

 By Allan Lengel
ticklthewire.com

Better late than never.

The Nixon Presidential Library in California on Thursday is making available Nixon’s grand jury testimony about the Watergate scandal, the Associated Press reports.

This should be interesting.

The public release of the material comes four months after a judge ordered the June 1975 records unsealed.

“This is Nixon unplugged,” said historian Stanley Kutler, a principal figure in the lawsuit that pried open the records, AP reported.

Still, he said, “I have no illusions. Richard Nixon knew how to dodge questions with the best of them. I am sure that he danced, skipped, around a number of things.”

AP reported that Nixon was interviewed near his California home for 11 hours over two days.

To read more click here.

 

“Geezer Bandit” Chalks Up #15 in Calif.

"Geezer Bandit"/fbi photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

That rascally bandit known as the “Geezer Bandit” continues his elusive ways.

On Wednesday, the FBI issued a statement that the bandit, who appears to be in his 70s, had hit his 15th bank in the San Diego area on Sept. 30, the Associated Press reported.

The robbery occured  at a Wells Fargo bank inside a Vons grocery store in La Jolla, Calif., AP reported.

AP reported that the bandit approached the teller counter, pointed a revolver pistol at the teller and demanded money.

The Geezer Bandit began is robbing ways in 2009.

A $20,000 reward has been offered for information leading to the robber’s arrest and conviction.

Some have speculated that the Geezer Bandit may actually be wearing a very-well crafted Hollywood quality mask to make it look as if he’s a senior citizen.

 

Late Agent’s Family: Holder Must “Take Responsibility”

Brian Terry

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

In more sobering news…

The family of Brian Terry, the border agent killed  last year near the Arizona border, issued a statement on Wednesday in response to US Attorney General Eric Holder’s testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee. The message: Holder needs to “take responsibility” for their son’s death, reports Arizona affiliate of ABC.

Holder was testifying about ATF’s failed Operation Fast and Furious, which encouraged gun dealers to sell to straw purchasers, all with the hopes of tracing the weapons to the Mexican cartels. ATF lost track of plenty of those weapons, some which surfaced at crime scenes including the one where Terry was killed.

Authorities have been unable to determine whether the two weapons found at the scene were actually involved in the shooting.

Holder stopped short of actually apologizing during his testimony before the committee on Tuesday.

“I certainly regret what happened to agent Terry,” he said when Texas Republican Senator John Cornyn asked if Holder would like to apologize for Fast and Furious.

“I am a father of three children myself,” Holder said. “We are not programmed to bury our kids.  It pains me whenever there is the death of a law enforcement officials, especially under the circumstances that this occurred.  It is not fair, however, to assume that the mistake that happened in Fast and Furious directly led to the death of Agent Terry,” he testified.

To read more click here.

Guatemalan Drug Enforcement Improves; DEA Standing in the Shadows

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

Elio Lorenzana, on who’s head the U.S. government placed a $200,000 reward, was peacefully detained after a DEA-supported operation.

The lede of the story, on the website InSight (tagline: “Organized crime in the Americas”), reads: “Guatemala has now captured more top-level drug traffickers in the past two years than in the previous decade, no doubt thanks to pressure from the US.”

Elio Lorenzana was the youngest son of what the report called one of Guatemala’s most influential families–involed in both legitimate and illegitimate businesses, including narcotics running and drug trafficking.

The quiet arrest stands in contrast to five previous attempts, reports InSight; Guatemalan forces began pressuring the Lorenzana clan only after a US court indicted the family for drug trafficking in March of 2009.

The operation was part of a newly implemented strategy, wherein Guatemalan forces use less visible partnerships with the DEA, though the agency still plays a key advisory role.

To read more click here.

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

Cyber Ring that Infected Millions Taken Down

By Danny Fenster
ticklethewire.com

Six Estonians operated a vast internet fraud that infected approximately 4 million computers in more than a hundred countries–500,000 of which were in the US–according to a federal indictment unsealed in New York Wednesday. Their arrests in Estonia on Tuesday were the culmination of a two-year FBI probe named Operation Ghost Click.

The cyber ring, beginning in 2007, used what is called a DNSChange to interfere with unsuspecting people’s web browsing.

DNS, which stands for Domain-Name-System, is the system by which website names and urls are converted into numbers, allowing computers to communicate over a network. The DNSChanger was able to manipulate Internet advertising by redirecting user’s browsers not to the sites they intended to go to, but related sites controlled by the group. They generated $14 million in illicit fees from the scheme, and deprived legitimate businesses and advertisers of potential revenue.

The DNSChanger disabled the anti-virus software of some victim’s computers, exposing them to further viruses.

“They were organized and operating as a traditional business but profiting illegally as the result of the malware,” said one cyber agents that worked the case. “There was a level of complexity here that we haven’t seen before.”

The six Estonians were arrested in their homeland by local authorities on Tuesday, and the U.S. will seek extradition.

Column: When it Comes to J. Edgar Hoover, What Journalism?

Schwarz is a retired FBI agent.

Gregg Schwarz/facebook

By Gregg Schwarz
for ticklethewire.com

For just one small moment, let’s take a look at this trade called journalism. I thought this was to be based on some facts. Possibly an interview or two. Maybe even some research that was based in fact.

That is not what I see about Mr. J. Edgar Hoover and his private life. The people who are out there making claims and attempting to ruin the good reputation of the father of law enforcement are doing all of this based on the desire to make headlines and money.

Plenty articles and books are being written. And now the latest: Hollywood’s dubious attempt at capturing history through the movie “J. Edgar.”

Unfortunately, they’re not based on fact, but rather speculation and conjecture.

It is a shame. They need to remember there is no larger rumor mill than the Special Agents of federal law enforcement. Law enforcement knows rumors. But hearing rumors and publishing them are two different things.  Sure, rumors know no bounds. That’s where journalists are supposed to come in; to separate the fact from the fiction, the rumor from the reality.

Interestingly, all those years and not one one rumor — at least not one published one — until more than ten years after the man died? Unfortunately, Mr. Hoover cannot respond.

What journalism?

Atty. Gen. Holder Says Misinformation in FBI Training About Muslims Can Undermine Efforts