Thursday, April 22, 2010

Senators to Obama: Stop Stonewalling!

This is a story about which we have not heard much in the news of late:

Two Senators Subpoena Obama Administration For Information On Fort Hood Shootings

Sens. Joseph I. Lieberman (I-Conn.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) issued the first congressional subpoenas of the Obama administration Monday after accusing the White House of stonewalling their requests for information about the Fort Hood shootings.

In a letter with the subpoenas, the chairman and ranking member of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee said the FBI and Defense Department had ignored their requests for five months. The Nov. 5 shootings at the Texas base, the largest Army post in the United States, left 13 people dead.

Lieberman and Collins said they sought witnesses and documents about what the government previously knew about the alleged gunman, Army psychiatrist Nidal M. Hasan, and whether it had adequately investigated his pre-shooting communications with Yemeni cleric and suspected terrorist Anwar al-Aulaqi.

Lawmakers gave the administration until April 26 to respond or face a committee vote to take the administration to court.

Well, that time is fast approaching. It will be telling to see how Obama responds:

"Given the warning signs of Major Nidal Malik Hasan's extremist radicalization and growing hostility toward the U.S. military and the United States generally, why was he not stopped before he took thirteen American lives, and how can we prevent such a tragedy from happening again?" Lieberman and Collins wrote Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. and Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates.

"Unfortunately, it is impossible for us to avoid reaching the conclusion that the departments simply do not want to cooperate with our investigation," they wrote in the letter, which they said followed four other formal letters to the Pentagon and two to the Justice Department.

White House spokesman Robert Gibbs referred questions about the matter to the Defense Department.

On Friday, Gates said that the military had "no interest in hiding anything" but that its most important priority was to prevent the release of materials that could compromise Hasan's prosecution on 13 charges of murder and 32 charges of attempted murder.

"We are going to be reviewing the subpoena and determining the proper way forward," Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman said Monday. "We will continue to cooperate with the Congress as we go forward, but it has to be with the caveat that whatever we do does not have a potentially negative impact on our ability to prosecute."

The senators said senior Pentagon and FBI personnel had provided closed briefings to lawmakers, but added, "Congress cannot conduct effective oversight based only on those facts the agencies want Congress to have."

Collins and Lieberman said the FBI and Pentagon had permitted their personnel to speak to internal investigators -- including the FBI's deputy director and a Gates-appointed panel led by former Army secretary Togo West and retired Adm. Vernon Clark, a former chief of naval operations -- but not to their committee. "Congress cannot settle for less access than the West-Clark review received," they said.

In an April 12 letter, Justice and Defense lawyers said that interviews could compromise agents' testimony at trial and chill future investigations, and that information about how Hasan's associates and superiors at Walter Reed Army Medical Center dealt with complaints about his alleged radicalization could not be provided until internal disciplinary proceedings were completed.

The following report hits the highlights of this action by Senators Lieberman and Collins:

Here is an interesting comparison. While Major Hasan was allowed to spout jihadist rhetoric and generally appear, well, nuts, including calling the war in Iraq a "War On Islam," no significant move was made to impede his career in anyway by the Army.

Meanwhile, Lt. Col. Lakin, another doctor, will face a court martial for his refusal to follow an order from Obama, seeing it as unlawful (Lakin is a "birther"). I am not in any way, shape, or form, defending Lakin's refusal to follow an order to deploy, but it is telling that he is facing a court martial, as well as the Army suggesting this decorated flight surgeon get a brain scan because he doesn't believe Obama is natural born.

Hey, even the Arizona House has voted to force Obama to prove his citizenship if he hopes to be on the ballot in that state again (better late than never, I'm sure some would say!), so I guess they all need brain scans, too?

Interesting how the two doctors were treated. One, according to this article, injected his political beliefs in a most inappropriate manner in the classroom, and about whom people say they are not surprised he killed a slew of his fellow soldiers. Did anyone suggest a brain scan for him prior to the killings for his rhetoric? Not that I have seen reported.

The other, a highly decorated flight surgeon, questions the authenticity of the president to be president. As a result, he has defied an order to muster to another post, and a return to the theater. His actions are being treated as far more serious than Hasan's. Not saying he is right, just saying there is a vast disparity between the two. Curious.

And now the Obama Administration is stonewalling Congress on the release of documents related to the Fort Hood shooting. I wish I could say I am surprised, but I am not. Are you?


Anonymous said...

Not surprising at all, considering this administration's stance on Israel and the Palestinian Authority. Copied the following from RBO (emphasis of last paragraph mine):

Aaron Klein, Jerusalem bureau chief for World Net Daily, reports:

The Obama administration is pushing Israel to hand the Palestinian Authority full control of a major city in Jerusalem as a so-called confidence-building gesture to jumpstart Israeli-PA negotiations, WND has learned.

According to sources in both the PA and in the bureau of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the Obama administration has demanded the following from Israel as “confidence-building gestures” toward the Palestinians ahead of any negotiations:

* That Israel scale back roadblocks and checkpoints in the strategic West Bank to near the levels of such measures prior to the Palestinian intifada, which started in September, 2000. Israel says roadblocks and checkpoints are crucial security measures in stopping terrorist attacks.

* That Israel release about 2,000 Palestinian prisoners from Israeli jails.

* That Israel ease its siege of the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip. That siege applies only to materials that Israel believes will be used by Hamas to enhance its military apparatus. Basic foods, medicine, supplies and even monetary exchange flows into Gaza regularly.

* That Israel turn over to the PA full control of key West Bank cities that are currently under security control of Israel due to security threats. This demand includes what are known as areas B and C. B, as defined by the 1993 Oslo Accords, are cities administered by the PA but patrolled by Israel. C encompasses cities under full Israeli control

WND has learned that as part of its demands, the Obama administration is asking Israel to transfer to the PA the town of Abu Dis, a largely Arab neighborhood in eastern Jerusalem that borders key Jerusalem roadways and is home to about 12,000 residents. Some Arab homes in the neighborhood are built illegally on Jewish-owned land.

Netanyahu is said to strongly oppose this demand, arguing that only negotiations can determine the future borders of Jerusalem.

The demand, if enacted, would be unprecedented for any previous Israeli-Palestinian talks. The Jewish state has never been asked to withdraw from any Jerusalem territory in exchange for starting negotiations.

Sources in Netanyahu’s office told WND that any change of the status quo in Abu Dis would signal that Israel is willing to forfeit the strategic neighborhood.

The officials said that while former Prime Minister Ehud Barak discussed the neighborhood in talks with late-PLO Leader Yasser Arafat, later negotiations under Prime Minister Ehud Olmert did not come to any conclusion regarding Abu Dis.

“They are asking us to go beyond what Olmert started and this would only be as a precondition for further talks,” said a source in Netanyahu’s office of the U.S. demand.

Already as a “confidence building gesture,” Netanyahu, acting under heavy U.S. pressure, in November announced a 10-month halt to all Jewish construction in the West Bank in an attempt to jumpstart talks aimed at creating a PA-led state

The Obama administration is also demanding a total halt to all Jewish construction in eastern Jerusalem as a precondition to jumpstart talks. Netanyahu has refused an official freeze; however, almost no new Jewish construction in eastern Jerusalem has been approved since last month.

Meanwhile, the PA has not been asked to enact any major gestures toward Israel to jumpstart talks. The U.S. has not demanded the PA recognize Israel as a Jewish state.

And, of course, the court martial of 3 Navy Seals for "punching" a terrorist...because the terrorist said so. Thank heaven the first Seal on trial was acquitted.

I wonder when I'll need to start sewing gold stars on my clothes?

It's time to get outta here. It's getting way too scary.

Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy said...

You know, SF, as I was reading that article, I kept thinking: well, what is the PA being asked to give up? What a surprise that they are being asked to give up nothing at all.

That is a truly shocking story. It does not surprise me one whit that Obama is MAKING these demands, but I can't help but Sec. Clinton feels abt this given HER support of Israel. Is she going to go along with these outrageous demands??

Btw, I found out that, sadly, our dream home has a deposit on it. But never fear, I am still looking for a place that has an apt. for you, too. Oh - I got the info. from emailing the guy - that's how badly I want to get out of here while the getting is still good...

Thanks for the article, SF. It is disturbing, to say the least...

Anonymous said...

I was wondering what SoS Clinton was thinking, too. It'll be the end of her if she has to support his anti-Israel/pro-PA views. I hope if it comes to that, she'll quit.

Oh no! Someone else has our house! Well, we'll have to find another. If there's isn't one with a guest house, we'll just have to each buy a house....perhaps my knight in shining armor will finally show up and he'll just happen to have with him a deed for a fabulous villa ...LOL ....he'll probably show up just about the same time as that darn unicorn, eh?

Time to get out while the getting is good, indeed! Did you ever think it would get this bad? And I thought it couldn't be any worse than Bush.

Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy said...

Hey, SF -

I'm glad you're back - I had meant to say I am relieved that the first Seal was found not guilty. It is appalling that three of our elite service people are even facing court martial for how they apprehended a terrorist, based on HIS word alone.

It reminds me of a story one of the regular NQ readers told of a burglar breaking into her house, and her little dog getting hold of his leg. He tried to file charges against the homeowners - the very ones into whose home he had just broken. RIDICULOUS!!

Well, there are other places from which to choose, that's true. I am seriously trying to figure out a time to go down there. Another house owned by the same guy as our dream home is also a rental. I'll send you a link to the other villas I've seen.

And I think you are right - Hillary's career will be over if she supports the numerous demands issued by Obama. Sheesh...

Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy said...

Hey, SF - did you see this article abt Netanyahu's response? Wow.

Anonymous said...

Yay for Netanyahu! Good for him for not letting The Pretender push him around.

I'll check out those is time for a trip to Montserrat. I wonder if Raymond can come with me, I can't leave him for more than a few days.

Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy said...

Indeed - I am glad he is not allowing The One to push him around. It really makes you wonder what Obama REALLY wants to accomplish by acting like this?

That's a good question abt Raymond. The short answer is yes! Here you go: