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News Story

Ex-U.S. Atty. Who Charged John Edwards to Run for Congress

U.S. Atty. George Holding

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

It didn’t take long for Raleigh U.S. Attorney George E.B. Holding — who charged ex-Sen. John Edwards with campaign violations shortly before stepping down this month — to figure out what he wants to do next.

The former U.S. Attorney announced Wednesday that he plans to run for Congress in the 13th District in North Carolina, according to the Raleigh News & Observer. The seat is currently held by Dem Brad Miller.

“I’m committed to run for Congress,” Holding, 43, said, according to the paper. “Our nation faces its greatest problems ever, and the only way to solve them is to stop sending politicians to Washington and start sending public servants to Washington.”

Holding resigned July 8.

He was appointed the U.S. Attorney by President Bush in 2006.  The Obama administration let him stay on for more than 2 years so that he could complete the investigation into ex-Sen. John Edwards without interruption.

The trial is pending for Edwards.

Stretch of Calif. I-8 to Be Dedicated to Slain Border Agent

Robert Rosas Jr.

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

A five mile stretch along I-8 in California in the San Diego area will have signs honoring Robert Rosas Jr., a popular border patrol agent who was killed in an ambush two years ago, the San Diego Union Tribune reported.

A ceremony to unveil the signs is set for the fall, the paper reported. The memorial was cleared by the state legislature, and the National Border Patrol Council has pledged the $4,500 for the signs, the Tribune reported.

“Robert Rosas we a true hero who gave the ultimate sacrifice in safeguarding our country,” said state Sen. Joel Anderson, according to the paper.

The Tribune reported that Rosas, 30, was on patrol on the night of July 23, 2009 along the Shockey Truck Trail when he was ambushed by a group of smugglers out to rob him.

Atty. For Slain Border Agent May Sue Government

Brian Terry

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The family of murdered Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry may sue the government.

Fox News reports that the family attorney Paul Chartlon said: “If the evidence shows Brian’s death was proximately caused by the negligence of the federal government, there may be a cause of action.

Guns from ATF’s Operation Fast and Furious were found at the scene of the crime in December 2010. He was killed in southern Arizona allegedly by an illegal immigrant working for the Sinaloa Cartel, according to Fox.

To date, there has been no evidence that has surfaced publicly to indicate that the guns from the ATF operation were actually used to kill Terry.

Operation Fast and Furious has become the target of Congressional inquiries. The operation involved encouraging gun dealers in Arizona to sell to middlemen or “straw purchasers” — all with the hopes of tracing them to the Mexican cartels.

Critics say ATF lost track of some guns that showed up at crime scenes.

The White House has condemned the program.

Dealing With Possible Airport Threat of Surgically Implanted Bombs

Could Dept. of Homeland Security Be Buying $300 Mil in Worthless Radiation Detectors?

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Here’s a case where the intent may be good, but the execution could be costly and worthless.

According to the The Washington Post, an unreleased Government Accountability Office report shows that the Department of Homeland Security plans to spend more than $300 million over the next four years on radiation-detection equipment that hasn’t been fully tested and may not work.

The Post reported that in January the National Academy of Sciences reported that it wasn’t possible to know whether the machines,ASPs, worked.

To read the full story click here.

Families of Whitey Bulger’s Victims Speak Out

Michigan Prof Sues FBI and CIA; Claims Bush White House Tried to Smear Reputation

Prof. Juan Cole

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

University of Michigan History Professor Juan Cole wants to take a peak at CIA and FBI files — and for pretty good reason.

Last month, according to the New York Times, former CIA official Glenn Carle said the Bush White House wanted to smear Cole’s reputation and discredit him because he was critical of the administration’s Middle East policies. Cole, who lives in Ann Arbor, writes a blog on Middle East issues.

The CIA’s Carle, according to the Times, said his supervisor asked him: “Does he (Cole) drink? What are his views? Is he married?” And, “What do you think we might know about him, or could find out, that could discredit him?”

Cole asked the CIA and the FBI to look at any of his files, but never got a response, according to the Detroit Free Press.

So on Wednesday, Cole and the American Civil Liberties Union and a University of Michigan professor filed a lawsuit in Detroit federal court,  asking that he see any files relating to any alleged scheme to discredit him, the Free Press reported.

“In a democratic society, the secret police should not be spying on citizens for simply criticizing government policy,” said Michael Steinberg, legal director of the Michigan branch of the ACLU, according to the Detroit Free Press.

The Free Press reported that the FBI could not be reached for comment and  CIA spokesman Preston Golson said: “The CIA does not, as a rule, comment on pending litigation.”

Republicans Want More Documents in ATF’s Fast and Furious: Think Scandal Reaches in Highest Levels of Justice Dept.

atf file photo

By Richard A. Serrano
Los Angeles Times

WASHINGTON — Believing that the Operation Fast and Furious scandal reaches into the highest levels of the Justice Department, congressional Republicans asked the attorney general’s office to turn over a sweeping trove of emails, documents and other material to determine Washington’s role in the “reckless” operation that allowed U.S. semiautomatic weapons to flow to Mexican drug cartels.

“As our investigation into Operation Fast and Furious has progressed, we have learned that senior officials at the Department of Justice, including Senate-confirmed political appointees, were unquestionably aware of the implementation of this reckless program,” they said in a letter to Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. made public Tuesday. “Therefore, it is necessary to review communications between and among these senior officials.”

The investigation is led by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Vista), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, and Sen. Charles E. Grassley of Iowa, the top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The request for carte blanche access to “emails, memoranda, briefing papers and handwritten notes” could spark a political and legal fight over what, if anything, will be turned over.

To read more click here.