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September 2021


How to Become a Bounty Hunter

Tag: Robert Mueller

Column: FBI And Top Spies Give Mixed Message: Shades of Bush?

Jeff Stein

Jeff Stein

By Jeff Stein
Spy Talk

WASHINGTON — Which is it now — imminent terrorist threat, or no threat? Certain or uncertain?

Only last month U.S. intelligence officials were saying the Nigerian underwear bomber slipped through their nets because they didn’t think al Qaeda could or would mount another attack here.

Yesterday, they warned that a terror attack here was “certain.”

Meantime, we hear that the Miranda warning that FBI interrogators gave Umar Farouk Abdulmutullab caused the Nigerian to clam up.

But yesterday, FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III said he was singing like the proverbial bird.

Moreover, in “case after case,” terrorists have provided actionable intelligence even after they were given their rights and charged with crimes, Mueller said.

If that weren’t enough, officials continue to contradict each other on who’s in charge of interrogating Abdulmutallab and other top-of-the-ticket terrorist suspects.

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FBI Dir. Mueller Gets Briefed in Chicago on Terrorism Case Linked to Mumbai

Robert Mueller III in Denver/fbi photo

Robert Mueller III in Denver/fbi photo

By Allan Lengel

WASHINGTON — FBI Director Robert Mueller III was in Chicago on Wednesday where he was briefed on a terror case involving the 2008 deadly attacks in Mumbai, the Chicago Tribune reported.

Mueller reportedly was told details of the case involving David Coleman Headley, who is charged with plotting to attack a Copenhagen newspaper and scouting targets for the Mumbai attack last year that resulted in about 170 deaths.

Headley has pleaded not guilty and is cooperating with the FBI, the Tribune reported.

Turkey Rejects FBI Mueller’s Request for Info About Travelers

Robert Mueller III/file photo

Robert Mueller III/file photo

By Allan Lengel

WASHINGTON — FBI Director Robert S. Mueller III may not be getting the warm and fuzzy treatment from Turkey.

The BBC reports that a Turkish newspaper website,  Radikal, said Turkey had rejected Mueller’s request that the nation share biometric data on everyone who uses its ports and airports.

The website said Mueller, who visited Turkey last Wednesday, had asked for the info to track terrorists traveling through Turkey. It said Turkey immediately rejected the request.

The U.S. Embassy in Ankara  issued a press release saying Mueller met in Turkey with Deputy Prime Minister Cemil Cicek, Justice Minister Sadullah Ergin and Chief of Police Oguz Kagan Koksal to discuss counterterrorism and law enforcement matters.

Here is the press release.

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Atty. Gen. Eric Holder and FBI Dir. Mueller Make List of Washington’s 50 Most Powerful

By Allan Lengel
WASHINGTON — In this town of ego-excess, where power is the true currency, not money, its tough to be number one — even if you think you are.

GQ magazine has weighed in with the “The 50 Most Powerful People in D.C.” Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. is ranked 13 and FBI Director Robert Mueller III gets the number 19 spot.  Sorry,  Homeland Secretary Janet Napolitano didn’t make the cut.

Had J. Edgar Hoover been around, we wonder where he would have ranked. By the way, number one person was Rahm Emanuel, the White House Chief of Staff. We assume the president wasn’t in the running.

Here’s what the magazine said about Holder and Mueller.

Holder on the left in Denver at the International Chiefs of Police Conference/ photo

Holder on the left in Denver at the International Chiefs of Police Conference/ photo

13. Eric Holder
Attorney General

Is this how an independent-minded attorney general operates? It’s been so long, it’s hard to know. Nonetheless, Holder has pushed back against the wishes of his own team, fighting CIA director Leon Panetta’s attempts to quash the release of the interrogation records and going forward with an investigation, against Obama’s wishes, into the alleged torture that took place during the Bush years. While critics on the left say he’s not going far enough, it’s nice to have a DOJ paying attention to the rule of law again.”

Robert Mueller III in Denver/fbi photo

Robert Mueller III in Denver/fbi photo

19. Robert Mueller
Director, FBI

You never really hear much about Mueller. “He stays out of the headlines,” says Michael Chertoff, former secretary of homeland security. Since coming into office seven days before September 11, he has quietly tried to build a more nimble intelligence division, which is now in the process of taking over much of the CIA’s role in detainee interrogations. And after the economic meltdown, he has expanded the bureau’s ability to tackle white-collar crime. “He’s making sure the FBI can retool itself,” says Chertoff.

Wife Bans FBI Dir. Mueller from Online Banking

This really does say it all. If the director of the FBI can almost fall for this, then you have to believe almost all of us can fall victim.

Robert Mueller III/file photo

Robert Mueller III/file photo

By Elinor Mills
SAN FRANCISCO–No one is immune from cyberthreats, not even the head of the FBI.

FBI Director Robert Mueller was banned by his wife from doing online banking after he nearly fell for a phishing scam, he said on Wednesday during a talk at the Commonwealth Club of California.

He received an e-mail purporting to be from his bank that looked “perfectly legitimate” and which prompted him to verify some information. He started to follow the instructions but then realized that that “might not be such a good idea,” he said.

.”Just a few clicks away from falling into a classic Internet phishing scam,” Mueller “barely caught himself in time” and admitted he “definitely should have known better.”

He said he changed his passwords and tried to pass the incident off to his wife as a “teachable moment,” but she was having none of it and told him, “It is our money. No more Internet banking for you!”

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Serious FBI Dir. Robert Mueller Delivers a Little Humor From Time to Time

Robert Mueller III in Denver/fbi photo
Robert Mueller III in Denver/fbi photo

By Allan Lengel
DENVER — In the halls of FBI headquarters, FBI Director Robert Mueller III isn’t exactly known as a kidder.

The words “stoic” and “serious” often come to mind. Let’s face it: the guy is always under a lot of pressure, particularly when it comes to preventing a domestic terrorism attack. Guess who’s going to get blamed if something happens?

But on occasion, while delivering a speech around the country, he sprinkles in a little humor. That happened Monday when he delivered a speech here to the International Association of Chiefs of Police annual conference, emphasizing cooperation between the feds and locals.

He started out his speech by saying:

“Year after year, I look out at all of you, and I ask myself the same question. Could I handle the challenges you face, day after day? Could I do the jobs you do with the same success? And the answer is no, for one simple reason: I could never bring myself to wear anything but a white shirt.”

“Your former president, Ron Ruecker, is now serving as our Director of Law Enforcement, and he is doing a great job. Several weeks ago, I asked Ron if he knew any good jokes to warm up the crowd. He suggested self-deprecating humor. And I said, ‘Sounds great. What are my weak points?’ And Ron said, ‘Well, sir, you’re only speaking for 15 minutes…so let’s just hit the highlights.’ I am sure that Ron will enjoy his new post in Yemen.”

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FBI Director Mueller Rejects Suggestions Poor Coordination Between NYPD and FBI Damaged Terror Probe

Robert Mueller III/fbi photo
Robert Mueller III/fbi photo

You would never expect the FBI’s Robert Mueller to go before Congress and point fingers at the missteps of another law enforcement agency, that is unless things really really went wrong. In this case, some things may have gone wrong, but not wrong enough to air things in public.

Associated Press
WASHINGTON – FBI Director Robert Mueller rejected suggestions Wednesday that poor coordination between the FBI and New York Police Department damaged the investigation of an Afghan immigrant charged with plotting a bomb attack in New York City.

Mueller also repeated previous assurances from federal and local officials that there is currently no known imminent threat to the U.S. from this case or any other.

Mueller testified before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs committee in the Obama administration’s first public appearance before lawmakers since news broke that Najibullah Zazi, a 24-year-old Denver airport driver, is suspected of plotting a terrorist attack in New York. Authorities have said Zazi admitted receiving explosives training from al-Qaida in Pakistan.

For Full Story

Read FBI Director’s Statement to Committee

Read Homeland Security Sec. Janet Napolitano’s Statement

FBI Sees al Qaeda Networks Popping Up in Places Like Yemen

The FBI and other agencies are learning that trying to remove al Qaeda in one or two countries won’t destroy the movement. It’s one thing to kill people, it’s another to kill a movement.


By Kevin Johnson
USA Today
WASHINGTON — In the eight years since the 9/11 attacks, FBI Director Robert Mueller has spent nearly the entire time focused on one enemy: al-Qaeda.

Thousands of terrorist operatives have been killed or captured. Terrorist safe havens and training grounds in Afghanistan where operatives were trained have been destroyed.

Military forces largely have shattered al-Qaeda’s leadership in Iraq. Meanwhile, Osama bin Laden and top deputy Ayman al-Zawahri, who once closely managed al-Qaeda’s day-to-day operations, have been driven into seclusion.

Now, Mueller and counterterrorism analysts are tracking the emergence of a new threat. Al-Qaeda has morphed into a fractured network of small terrorist franchises strewn across Asia, the Middle East and Africa.

For Full Story