The FBI uses drones for domestic surveillance purposes, the head of the agency told Congress early Wednesday.
Robert Mueller, the director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, confirmed to lawmakers that the FBI owns several unmanned aerial vehicles, but has not adopted any strict policies or guidelines yet to govern the use of the controversial aircraft.
“Does the FBI use drones for surveillance on US soil?” Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) asked Mr. Mueller during an oversight hearing on Capitol Hill Wednesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee.
“Yes,” Mueller responded bluntly, adding that the FBI’s operation of drones is “very seldom.”
Asked by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-California) to elaborate, Mueller added, “It’s very seldom used and generally used in a particular incident where you need the capability.” Earlier in the morning, however, Mueller said that the agency was only now working to establish set rule for the drone program.
Mueller began answering questions just after 10 a.m. EDT and has also touched briefly on the recently exposed NSA surveillance program that has marred the reputation of the United States intelligence community as of late. Mueller said 22 agents have access to a vast surveillance database, including 20 analysts and two overseers.
When Sen. Al Franken (D-Minnesota) asked Mueller later in the morning if he’d consider being more open about the FBI’s surveillance methods, the director decried being much more transparent that the bureau already is. Mueller said the FBI has and will continue to weigh the possibility of publishing more information about its spy habits, but warned that doing such would be to the advantage of America’s enemies.
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Barack Obama condemned the IRS scandal earlier this week saying,
“I have got not patience for it… I first learned about this from the same news reports that I think most people learned about this.”
But now we know… The Obama administration knew about the IRS targeting scandal in June 2012 – before the November elections.
The New York Times reported:
The Treasury Department’s inspector general told senior Treasury officials in June 2012 he was auditing the Internal Revenue Service’s screening of politically active organizations seeking tax exemptions, disclosing for the first time on Friday that Obama administration officials were aware of the matter during the presidential campaign year.
At the first Congressional hearing into the I.R.S. scandal, J. Russell George, the Treasury inspector general for tax administration, told members of the House Ways and Means Committee that he informed the Treasury’s general counsel of his audit on June 4, and Deputy Treasury Secretary Neal Wolin “shortly thereafter.”
It remained unclear how much the disclosure would affect the broader debate over the I.R.S.’s problems. Complaints from Tea Party groups that the I.R.S. was singling them out became public in 2012, through media accounts.
Mr. George told Treasury officials about the allegation as part of a routine briefing about ongoing audits he would be conducting in the coming year, and he did not tell the officials of his conclusions that the targeting had been improper, he said.
They are all Muslims except perhaps one or two. Just as it was right after 9/11, Muslims still are the most wanted terrorists in America…and likely, the world.
Frontpage Magazine In the wake of the horrific Boston Marathon bombing, media, politicians and left-wing commentators have gone to extraordinary lengths to opine on every possible motive and affiliation of the terrorists responsible — every motive except Jihad. Yet as the FBI’s official “Most Wanted Terrorists” list glaringly illustrates, there is no mystery behind the agenda of those compelled to commit mass atrocities against American citizens.
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WND recently reported that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has purchased well over a billion rounds of ammunition over the past year.
The magnitude of the federal government’s ammunition buildup has made headlines as members of the military, police departments and consumers find shelves bare.
But the full impact may yet to be seen, as WND has uncovered a plan by the FBI to spend up to $100 million over five years on millions of rounds for its machine guns and pistols.
According to a solicitation revised and released March 25 that WND discovered during routine database research, the FBI is gathering the ammunition “to be carried and fired [by FBI Special Agents] in defense of life” as well as for training purposes.
The ammunition includes a combination of field-ready Glock 9mm rounds as well as reduced-lead training ammo. Weapons listed in the Statement of Work, or SOW, are Glock Model 17, Glock Model 19, Glock Model 26, SIG Sauer P226, SIG Sauer P228, Heckler and Koch MP5 9mm submachine gun (K, A2, A3, SF and SD versions).
“The FBI is the federal government’s principal agency responsible for investigating violations of more than 260 federal statutes,” the SOW points out. “As the investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Justice, FBI Special Agents (SA), in the pursuit of duty, may be involved in high threat assignments where deadly force may be used in the face of violent confrontations.”
Contractors are peppering the bureau with questions as they jockey for position to secure the lucrative contract, the amended solicitation indicates. Once the FBI decides on a provider, that contractor will deliver the ammunition within 60 days to FBI facilities and “other approved federal government locations” in the continental U.S. as well as Hawaii, Alaska and Puerto Rico.
Hundreds of millions of rounds likewise are being ordered by the Department of Homeland Security, with more than a quarter-billion of them slated specifically for Customs and Border Protection training over five years.
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The U.S. Federal Investigation Bureau released records it was keeping on celebrated journalist and late ‘60 Minutes’ correspondent Mike Wallace, who died on April 7, 2012, at the age of 93.
The files include a look into whether Wallace was involved in communist activities as well as an investigation of a threatening letter sent to him by an emotionally disturbed World War II veteran titled ‘Communist Control of the Press.’
Wallace, late ’60 Minutes’ creator Don Hewitt and three others took a trip to Cuba in the summer of 1970 to document the country, according to the files.
The group departed from Mexico with 22 pieces of luggage weighing about 770 pounds and returned with 26 pieces of luggage weighing about 904 pounds. An educated guess would be Cuban cigars, other souvenirs or additional camera tape from the embargoed island.
Wallace, who was 52 at the time, was not discovered to be a communist member or sympathizer.
A separate investigation into a bizarre and threatening letter from April 4, 1977, identified the sender as Donald P. Hale — a disabled World War II veteran and a former prisoner of war.
‘I have solid proof that you are a pro-communist anti-American traitor,’ the letter reads. ‘We will expose you, convict you, and hang you.’
Hale’s letter also includes references to his dog puking on the rug and ‘piddling’ in Wallace’s eye through the television screen.
The U.S. Attorney’s office decided against prosecuting Hale for extortion, stating that his letter did not appear to have criminal intent and that Hale told investigators he meant no harm and was suffering from ’emotional problems.’
Read more here.