Sunday, May 13, 2007

FBI Director Mueller lies. Political pressure not to indict Hastert in Sibel Edmonds case

Last week, FBI Director Mueller said that "he is confident that nobody in the Justice Department exerted any undue political influence on any of the high-visibility public corruption cases of recent years."

That might be true, depending on the definition of "high visibility" and "recent."

While the current Attorney scandal is a purely Republican affair, one of Mueller's first tasks when he was appointed in 2001 was to shut down a bipartisan congressional bribery investigation. We know the name of only one of the perps, former Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert - who reportedly took more than $500,000 in bribes.

When the FBI agents in charge of the operations tried to get a Special Prosecutor appointed they "were told to alter the thrust of their investigation – away from elected politicians and toward appointed officials."

Interesting, no?

In the current Attorney scandal, prosecutors have been directed away from investigating Republican corruption, that's because Republicans have been in charge for so long. When the corruption is bipartisan, so is the coverup - and despite Mueller's protestations, apparently it's the elected folks who wield all the power.

From Vanity Fair:
"(The wiretap's) subject was explosive; what sounded like attempts to bribe elected members of Congress, both Democrat and Republican. “There was pressure within the bureau for a special prosecutor to be appointed and take the case on, “ the (F.B.I. counter-intelligence official who is familiar with the case file) says. Instead, his colleagues were told to alter the thrust of their investigation – away from elected politicians and toward appointed officials. “This is the reason why Ashcroft reacted to Sibel in such an extreme fashion,” he says “It was to keep this from coming out.” "
Hastert is the only named individual in the case - he is said to have taken more than $500,000 in bribes, delivered in cash, in suitcases, to his home. The case was blocked in 2001, soon after Mueller's appointment - but it has remained blocked ever since. So, on the 'recent' claim, Mueller is lying when says that "nobody in the Justice Department exerted any undue political influence on any of the high-visibility public corruption cases of recent years"

Mueller might be correct when he refers to 'high visibility' - the fact that the ex-Speaker of the House was nearly, and still deserves to be, indicted somehow didn't become a 'high visibility' case. Vanity Fair put together the story, Amy Goodman ran a story on it, Josh Marshall ran a piece on it, as did a bunch of story - and I think that's about it.

As you all know, there's not a single media outlet in the US who would make such claims unless they had evidence that they were very comfortable with. As Sibel made clear:
"But making specific charges in specific cases, no one in the media can ever do that without explicit evidence from someone very close to the investigation or activity."
I know for a fact that Vanity Fair's lawyers went through this article with a fine toothed comb prior to publication, and they excluded a whole bunch of explosive stuff that I wish they'd included - but they didn't exclude this particular claim. And Hastert didn't sue Vanity Fair, or Sibel. After months of give-and-take between Hastert's lawyers and Vanity Fair, Vanity Fair finally published a letter from Hastert's team which essentially didn't refute the key charges.

Still, Hastert waddles free to this day.

So, when you think about the current Attorney scandal, remember that it's only the tip of the iceberg. It's not just about Gonzales, it's not just about the USAs, and it's not just about Republicans.

On, or about, Tuesday, we're going to be asking you to call Henry Waxman's office to demand open public hearings into Sibel Edmonds' case. See campaign headquarters "Let Sibel Edmonds Speak" for more.

With your help, we can put Perle, Feith and Hastert in jail, where they belong.

(Dkos, DU)

1 comment:

Kax said...

Call Waxma's Committee Dem Staff. You'll get further.

Things are heating up, eh?

Fire to the feet time.