CASE CLOSED … what really happened in the 2001 anthrax attacks?

* DXer: A Congressional Probe Is Needed Given The FBI’s Destruction Or Loss Of Every Single Email That It Relied Upon In Pitching its Controversial “Ivins Theory” In Mueller’s Amerithrax Investigation

Posted by Lew Weinstein on January 23, 2018

Search for the word “e-mail” in the FBI’s Amerithrax Summary
https://www.justice.gov/archive/amerithrax/docs/amx-investigative-summary.pdf

Then compare the quoted emails to the ones that the FBI for the past 5 years have failed to produce.

And look at all the emails quoted in Dellefera Affidavit in support of the search of Ivins’ residence.

The loss or destruction — the proven failure to produce — these emails is a flagrant violation of FOIA and the rule of law.

It constitutes spoliation of evidence if they are not produced.  The report to the federal judge on this issue is January 30, 2018.

Amerithrax was Robert Mueller’s biggest whodunnit.  I was Mueller’s biggest fan.  Still am.

But the FBI’s withholding of these emails is just beyond the pale.

And which would be worse — its failure to maintain them or lying and saying they can’t find them.

Either is unacceptable and requires imposition of attorneys fees and sanctions against the individuals who continue to fail to produce them.

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101 Responses to “* DXer: A Congressional Probe Is Needed Given The FBI’s Destruction Or Loss Of Every Single Email That It Relied Upon In Pitching its Controversial “Ivins Theory” In Mueller’s Amerithrax Investigation”

  1. DXer said

    Why you shouldn’t read conspiracy theories about the novichok poisoning, even if you really want to

    If we get caught up in a culture of fake news, we’re as bad as Donald Trump

    Will Gore
    5 minutes ago

    https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/novichock-poisoning-amesbury-wiltshire-conspiracy-theories-salisbury-truth-facts-russia-a8432541.html

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  2. DXer said

    Why Mueller is Getting Desperate

    FrontPage Magazine-Jun 5, 2018
    This time, Mueller’s favorite target is being accused of witness …. From the anthrax case to today, Mueller doubles down when he’s wrong.

    https://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/270368/why-mueller-getting-desperate-daniel-greenfield

    Comment: With the Cohen documents due to arrive on or about June 15, 2018, I don’t think that Mueller is getting desperate.

    Instead, I think it is President Trump who is in a difficult position.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    • DXer said

      https://www.frontpagemag.com/fpm/270368/why-mueller-getting-desperate-daniel-greenfield

      “The accusation is also obviously a means to an end. Mueller had bet everything on pressuring Paul [Manafort].”

      [Really? If true, that would be a big burden off the shoulders of Michael Cohen, the President’s personal attorney who was raided in recent memory].

      “Mueller isn’t bright.”

      [I don’t see any evidence that he isn’t bright. Instead, I know of lots of reasons to think he is very bright, to include his academic pedigree and his career accomplishments.]

      “If there’s one quality that defines him, it’s certainty. Mueller is always certain even when he’s wrong. Especially when he’s wrong. From the anthrax case to today, Mueller doubles down when he’s wrong.”

      As one aide put it, Mueller is “someone that can’t accept the fact that he screwed up.”

      [I don’t have any reason to disagree with this but I don’t know the man.]

      Besides, it is never too late for the FBI to reconsider the evidence in Amerithrax, to include the documents from September and October 2001 still being withheld in violation of FOIA.

  3. DXer said

    Robert Mueller needs to send the message — that rings down through history — that the United States is not a banana republic. The rule of law must prevent this level of massive corruption — whatever the party affiliation.

    It seems that President Trump will resign in the week following the indictment of Michael Cohen and Felix Sater for corruption — with perhaps a racketeering count in a “speaking indictment” that is especially ugly.

    Perhaps President Trump will task Attorney Giuliani with negotiating a deal under which the Independent counsel’s office stands down as to ongoing investigations relating to Donald Trump, Jr. and Jared Kushner.

    President Trump then can resume his hobbies of golfing and tweeting to no ill effect. #20Hindsight #Pence Pompeo (Indeed, Michael Avenatti likely will have a far rougher go of it as DOJ prepares to move against him on his IRS obligations.) The GOP then can move forward in midterms without Mr. Trump’s base being unduly fractured.

    This result once might have all been avoidable before the Independent Counsel got hold of the materials from the Cohen search. Attorney Giuliani missed the opportunity to derail Mueller by forcing compliance under FOIA in the Amerithrax matter. That is ironic because he was well-positioned as the former Mayor of New York City.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    • DXer said

      In advance of President Trump’s resignation upon Michael Cohen indictment, Jared and Ivanka should return to New York City. For the sake of the country, there is no reason that this can’t be a smooth transition of power.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Felix_Sater

      In late January 2017, Sater met with Ukrainian politician Andrey Artemenko and Donald Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael D. Cohen, at the Loews Regency in Manhattan to discuss a plan to lift sanctions against Russia. The proposed plan would require that Russian forces withdraw from eastern Ukraine and that Ukraine hold a referendum on whether Crimea should be “leased” to Russia for 50 or 100 years. Sater gave Cohen a written proposal in a sealed envelope that was delivered to then-National Security Advisor Michael T. Flynn in early February.[20] On 20 February 2017, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov rejected Russia “leasing” Crimea from Ukraine claiming “we cannot rent from ourselves”.[21]

      Criminal convictions and federal cooperation

      Felix Sater has been described as a career criminal due to his links to organized crime.[22][23][24][25][26] In 1991, Sater got into an argument with a commodities broker at the El Rio Grande restaurant and bar in Midtown Manhattan. He stabbed the man’s cheek and neck with the stem of a margarita glass, breaking his jaw, lacerating his face, and severing nerves, creating a wound that would require 110 stitches to treat. Sater was convicted of first degree assault and spent 15 months in Edgecombe Correctional Facility before being paroled.[27][4][28] In 1998, Sater was convicted of fraud in connection to a $40 million penny stock pump and dump scheme conducted by the Russian Mafia[8][9] involving his company White Rock Partners. In return for a guilty plea, Sater agreed to assist the FBI and federal prosecutors as an informant in organized crime. In 2009, he was sentenced to pay a $25,000 fine and served no prison time. As a result of his assistance, Sater’s court records were sealed for 10 years by Loretta Lynch, then the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York. Lynch’s decision to seal his records was discussed at her 2015 Congressional confirmation hearings to become attorney general; she stated that Sater provided “information crucial to national security and the conviction of over 20 individuals, including those responsible for committing massive financial fraud and members of La Cosa Nostra.”[29][30][31][32]

      Articles about Russia’s potential interference with the 2016 election of Donald Trump report that Felix Sater played a role in trying to assist Russia.[33][34] According to the New York Times and other sources, Felix Sater wrote and sent to his Russian contact(s) (probably Dmitry Peskov, Putin’s personal assistant) an email stating, “I will get Putin on this program and we will get Donald elected” and “If he says it we own this election.”[34][35][36]

    • DXer said

      Attorney Giuliani missed an opportunity by not allowing FOIA to establish that former FBI Director Mueller was mistaken about Amerithrax. That would have provided the President the wiggle room that will be needed.

      Attorney Giuliani and President Trump may next try to argue that Loretta Lynch and/or the FBI placed (former FBI informant) Felix Sater into the Trump campaign. In light of the allegations in the expected indictment of Michael Cohen, won’t what Giuliani and President Trump argue be pretty irrelevant?

      Attorney Giuliani worked hard to develop the informant/mole narrative. But in the end the American public has watched too many LAW AND ORDER reruns to be persuaded when attention turns to the allegations of a Cohen indictment.

      Mueller probes Ukrainian who pitched peace plan to White House
      The Ukrainian politician tried to shuttle his plan to the White House via two Trump associates now of interest to investigators — Felix Sater and Michael Cohen.
      By DAVID STERN
      05/18/2018 06:50 PM EDT
      Updated 05/18/2018
      https://www.politico.com/story/2018/05/18/mueller-russia-probe-ukraine-peace-plan-white-house-trump-598034

      KIEV — Special counsel Robert Mueller’s team has been meeting over the last year with a Ukrainian lawmaker at the center of a controversial plan to end his country’s conflict with Russia, pressing him for details about interactions with Trump administration officials.

      Andrii Artemenko told POLITICO that FBI agents had peppered him with “assorted questions” over “at least” two interviews about his “meetings, dealings and the questions discussed with various levels of the American political establishment.”

      ***

      In total, Artemenko said, he was presented with a list of more than 140 questions and is now scheduled to appear under oath before a grand jury on June 1.

      Artemenko has drawn additional scrutiny because he attempted to shuttle this plan to the White House via two Trump associates now of interest to investigators — Trump business associate Felix Sater and Michael Cohen, the president’s personal lawyer. The plan also may have ultimately ended up on the desk of then-national security adviser Michael Flynn, who has since pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his conversations with Russian officials.

      Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
      http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  4. DXer said

    In the event that President Trump resigns as the result of corruption among his associates (such as his personal attorney Michael Cohen), if Pompeo is named Vice President by Pence, the country might be better prepared for the national security challenges the country will be facing in the future — such as quantum computing.

    What is quantum computing and why enterprises need to care, May 23, 2018
    https://www.networkworld.com/article/3275367/data-center/what-s-quantum-computing-and-why-enterprises-need-to-care.html

  5. DXer said

    Trump Demands ‘Transparency’ From Rosenstein on Mueller Probe

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-05-23/trump-demands-transparency-from-rosenstein-on-mueller-probe
    By
    Jennifer Epstein
    May 23, 2018, 12:30 PM EDT Updated on May 23, 2018, 12:51 PM EDT

    “One of the things that sometimes gets lost in the endless commentary about law enforcement is that some of the most patriotic and public-spirited American citizens work in the Department of Justice,” he said.

  6. DXer said

    There is no reason that President Trump need finish his term. If and when he accomplishes denuclearization of the Korean peninsula, it seems that he should step down in order to end on a positive note. Although I would have to leave it to the leagle beagles, I believe that might make the Independent Counsel’s appointment academic, to include possibly all subsidiary investigations relating to financial matters (such as those involving Don, Jr. and Jared Kushner).

    That would leave positive aspects of Mr. Trump’s legacy while avoiding the fallout.

    I think a majority of the country would embrace a Pence/Haley or Pence/Pompeo ticket, especially in the event of successful Korean talks. Then the Republic could chart a course back to calmer seas where the rule of law prevails. The country’s increasing partisanship is undermining our national security in countless ways.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  7. DXer said

    Stopping Robert Mueller to protect us all
    By Mark Penn, opinion contributor — 05/20/18 07:00 PM EDT
    http://thehill.com/opinion/judiciary/388549-stopping-robert-mueller-to-protect-us-all

    They started by telling the story of Alexander Downer, an Australian diplomat, as having remembered a bar conversation with George Papadopoulos, a foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign. But how did the FBI know they should talk to him? That’s left out of their narrative. Downer’s signature appears on a $25 million contribution to the Clinton Foundation. You don’t need much imagination to figure that he was close with Clinton Foundation operatives who relayed information to the State Department, which then called the FBI to complete the loop. This wasn’t intelligence. It was likely opposition research from the start.

    In no way would a fourth-hand report from a Maltese professor justify wholesale targeting of four or five members of the Trump campaign. It took Christopher Steele, with his funding concealed through false campaign filings, to be incredibly successful at creating a vast echo chamber around his unverified, fanciful dossier, bouncing it back and forth between the press and the FBI so it appeared that there were multiple sources all coming to the same conclusion.

    Comment:

    I think if we avoid partisan blinders, current events gets more and more interesting.

    In case of the opinion piece above, I understand Mr. Penn’s argument about recusal of Mr. Rosenstein as to the obstruction investigation because he is a fact witness as to the firing of Mr. Comey. Both Dershowitz and Tribe would agree on this.

    But I don’t understand Mr. Penn’s unexplained argument about recusal of Mr. Mueller. Although I found fascinating the report elsewhere about the $25 million from the Russian oligarch recruited by the FBI to help with the FBI Agent that went missing in Iran, I don’t think that was disqualifying based on what we know. Besides, Mueller has well over a dozen top prosecutors — and would have no need to be hands-on as to the Manafort case and the decision not to mention the Russian oligarch in the Manafort indictment.

    It’s a small world, in Washington DC legal circles especially. Oswego-native Noel Francisco, who some predict will be replacing Rosenstein after the IG report, worked at my old law firm. As a hypothetical, in the event we shared a coffee pot and he didn’t make fresh coffee after having the last cup, it wouldn’t be grounds for his recusal.

  8. DXer said

    F.B.I. Used Informant to Investigate Russia Ties to Campaign, Not to Spy, as Trump Claims

    Comment:

    Though reasonable people can disagree, I would call the so-called “informant” a “federal undercover” (working as a paid independent contractor). The professor working in England had previously done work for the CIA.

    The guy is offering money to George P. to write a pretextual report and come to London (with expenses paid) in order to ply him for info. That’s not what informants do. That’s what undercover spies do.

    For example, the FBI sent a federal undercover to Syracuse and for years he worked on graphics for me in a Mueller investigation that has not yet been resolved, even though the FBI claims it is “closed.”

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.anthraxandalqaeda.com

    I asked him if he was a federal undercover the second time I met him. He didn’t respond and instead asked me if I had ever heard of “Pegasus” (a DC investment fund that was being considered as maybe having a role in the anthrax mailings). The FBI was interested in the (pure) coincidence that I casually knew one of the firm’s members in a past life.

    Amerithrax was a compartmentalized investigation. Only Lambert saw all the evidence.

    As a whole, the FBI was very confused — agents like R. Scott Decker still are — but eventually I turned the inconvenient lemons into lemonade by getting years of free graphic arts done for me. The undercover spy later apologized for the ridiculously bad scripts his handler was writing him that first year.

    Fortunately, I knew the nice fellow — who I consider a good friend — to be an undercover from the first day I met him. Because I have a pretty good source of intelligence working on Amerithrax, Mueller’s other national security matter that is unresolved.

  9. DXer said

    With Giuliani left to emphasize that Mueller cannot indict a sitting precedent under DOJ policy, it seems likely that the President will simply eventually resign now that old-fashioned corruption is rearing its ugly head in connection with Mr. Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen. (This was all very predictable).

    Upon the President’s resignation, the republic will survive. Political differences can be addressed in a match-up in 2020 between the likes of Pence/Pompeo (or Pence/Haley) and Schiff/Brennan — to pull some random examples out of the air (with politics beyond the scope of the blog).

    The President may think that by not resigning he is preserving his ability to pardon — but under the Constitution the right to pardon does not extend to matters related to impeachment.

    And putting the office up for sale relates to grounds for impeachment.

    From the perspective of the Amerithrax matter, the Trump White House and Congressional GOP missed a real historic opportunity by not testing former FBI Director Mueller’s conclusion in Amerithrax by having FBI Director Wray direct compliance with FOIA in connection with the documents from Sept-October 2001 showing that Ivins did in fact have reason to be in the B3 for his small animal experiments. Former Amerithrax investigator Lambert — who like me holds Mueller in high regard — says that the FBI is withholding a staggering amount of information exculpatory of Bruce Ivins. Attorney Lambert is just mistaken (or rather is being overbroad). The fact that some or much of that is exempt from production due to national security or privacy grounds does not mean that the FBI has complied with its obligation under FOIA.

    Specifically, to selectively quote from the Sept-Oct 2001 emails without producing the emails under FOIA violates the statute. Moreover, the factual material in sections requested by Ken Dillon — that are subject to the litigation — can simply be redacted as to any material protected by national security or privacy exemptions. For example, Dillon seeks the Ivins section. The Ivins section addresses the issue of alibi and the FBI and R. Scott Decker don’t want you to see what it says.

    I fully realize there is no statute of limitations for murder. But the criminal case is closed.

  10. DXer said

    GOP lawmakers to Trump: Make DOJ release Mueller documents

    By KYLE CHENEY

    05/16/2018

    https://www.politico.com/story/2018/05/16/trump-mueller-russia-probe-doj-documents-592148

  11. DXer said

    Robert Mueller’s middle name is Swan — so he’s okay in my book. But he would be the first to agree that the FBI needs to comply with FOIA. Only his former employees have been allowed to participate in a game of CYA and wrongful withholding. (R. Scott Decker and his colleagues are still miffed at Mueller because he never congratulated them on their Ivins Theory.)

    Mueller’s right-hand man, former lead Amerithrax investigator Richard Lambert, says that the FBI is withholding a staggering amount of information exculpatory of Bruce Ivins.

    If the FBI is forced to comply with FOIA and provide the emails and documents from Sept-Oct 2001 proving that Ivins had reason to be in the B3 lab in Sept-October 2001, then the rule of law will have been upheld.

    Such an issue cannot be forgotten as the country prepares for combat. A man such as Mueller does not run away from the truth, he runs toward it.

    President’s aides believe Donald Trump, Jr. and Jared Kushner could be indicted: report
    The silence has driven President Donald Trump “mad,” according to MSNBC’s John Heilemann
    Travis Gettys
    May 14, 2018 5:46pm (UTC)
    https://www.salon.com/2018/05/14/white-house-fears-mueller-will-indict-don-jr-and-jared-but-the-silence-is-making-trump-crazy_partner/

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  12. DXer said

    The Untold Story of Robert Mueller’s Time in Combat

    Robert Mueller’s job is to make sense of how Russia hacked the 2016 election. But to make sense of Mueller, you have to revisit some of the bloodiest battles of Vietnam.

    https://www.wired.com/story/robert-mueller-vietnam/

    Comment: Salon, I believe, quotes unnamed White House aides saying that they expect Don Jr. and Jared to be indicted.

  13. DXer said

    Why Robert Mueller Is The Clown Prince Of Federal Law Enforcement
    http://thefederalist.com/2018/05/14/record-proves-robert-mueller-clown-prince-federal-law-enforcement/

    As we enter the second year of Robert Mueller’s sprawling investigation, Hanlon’s Razor teaches us to ‘Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.’

    One week after the 9/11 attacks, letters with anthrax were mailed to various media outlets and the offices of two U.S. senators, killing five and infecting 17 others. Coming as soon as it did after 9/11, hysteria naturally ensued. This was Mueller’s first true test as FBI director. The results were not pretty. As Mollie Hemingway noted, Mueller “completely botch[ed] the anthrax killer case, wasting more than $100 million in taxpayer dollars, destroying the lives of multiple suspects, and chasing bad leads using bad methods.”

    Mueller first wrongfully accused Steven Hatfill. Taxpayers ended up paying Hatfill $6 million to make good on that error. Mueller then accused another man, Bruce Ivins, based on scientific conclusions the National Academy of Sciences later determined to be flawed. Too late. A distraught Ivins killed himself. Mueller never apologized for either.

  14. DXer said

    Vice President Pence persuasively reasons it is time to wrap it up the Russia investigation. He is right. But given it would not be possible to wrap it up without interviewing Donald, Donald, Jr. etc., Mueller should now interview them or issue any necessary subpoenas. #2020Hindsight

    President Trump and his son are then free to invoke the Fifth Amendment as often as they deem necessary.

    President Trump really missed an opportunity by not turning to the FBI’s noncompliance with FOIA in Amerithrax — he allowed the Cohen matter and the pay-to-play culture that was exposed to set the context of how now everything will be judged.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  15. DXer said

    In the event that President Trump is forced to resign in the light of these revelations about the First Republic account for “Essential Consultants, LLC”, perhaps Vice-President Pence (if and when he assumes the Presidency) can force the production of the emails from Sept-October 2001 that the FBI relied upon in closing Amerithrax. The President really missed the boat in not making the shrewd move of testing former FBI Director Mueller’s conclusion in Amerithrax.

    Stormy Daniels’s Lawyer Links Michael Cohen to Russian Oligarch

    By Erik Larson and Andrew Martin
    May 8, 2018, 5:41 PM EDT Updated on May 8, 2018,
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-05-08/oligarch-steered-cash-to-trump-lawyer-s-account-avenatti-says

    • DXer said

      Can Robert Mueller subpoena Donald Trump? A look at the legal precedents
      By Jon Greenberg, Louis Jacobson on Wednesday, May 9th, 2018 at 6:00 a.m.
      http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2018/may/09/can-robert-mueller-subpoena-donald-trump/

      “If Mueller succeeds in bringing Trump before a grand jury, he would need to appear without a lawyer by his side. The proceedings would be secret and under Mueller’s full control.

      But if Trump agrees to an interview, then his lawyers will be present and they can negotiate the terms of the process.

      Trump could choose to plead the Fifth Amendment against self-incrimination, but that could open the door to impeachment. So could a decision to simply ignore a judicially backed subpoena.”

  16. DXer said

    https://usa.spectator.co.uk/2018/05/robert-mueller-is-out-of-control-he-should-be-shut-down-now/

    Robert Mueller is out of control. He should be shut down. Now.

    Roger Kimball

    Then there was the despicable case of Mueller’s Anthrax investigation after 9/11. There was panic in Washington after 5 people died and 17 were injured when anthrax was sent through the post. A culprit just had to be found. Mueller fingered Steven Hatfill, a government virologist for the crime, destroyed his career, and said nothing when Hatfill was cleared and awarded $5.8 million. Mueller then went after Bruce Edwards Ivins, also probably innocent, but we’ll never know for sure because Mueller drove him to suicide.

    Comment:

    Why do people think it is harder to obtain evidence once a person is deceased? If there were compliance with FOIA, it would be EASIER because documents can be obtained under FOIA without regard to the usual exemptions. For example, as to whether he was working on small animal experiments in late September and early October 2001, the FBI should be required to provide the emails and other documents it is withholding and selectively quoting. Let’s see what else the documents say.

    The former lead Amerithrax investigator, Richard Lambert — who holds former Director Mueller in high regard like most people — has told the New York Times and Fox News that the FBI is withholding a staggering amount of information exculpatory of Bruce Ivins. Dillon in federal litigation under FOIA is seeking the section in a lengthy interim prosecution memo on Ivins and documents and emails from September-October 2001.

    The FBI is withholding EVERY SINGLE EMAIL that it is selectively quoting and relying on in its Amerithrax Summary — and when FBI employees have claimed that they could not find them, those employees, I submit, were LYING. The employees who wish to continue withholding the Sep-Oct 2001 emails based on a false claim that they could not be located should leave the agency.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  17. DXer said

    President Trump: The FBI should comply with FOIA and provide the documents that it selectively quoted and relied upon in pitching its disputed Ivins Theory. The claim that the emails cannot be located is a lie.

    Fox and Friends – April 26 2018 – FoxNews

  18. DXer said

    Exclusive: Guilt of ‘anthrax killer’ Dr. Bruce Ivins questioned on Deadly Intelligence

    21st April 2018 April Neale

    https://www.monstersandcritics.com/smallscreen/exclusive-guilt-of-anthrax-killer-dr-bruce-ivins-questioned-on-deadliest-intelligence/

    Science Channel series Deadly Intelligence tonight looks at the case against Dr Bruce Ivins, the key suspect in the 2001 anthrax attacks — and whether he was framed in an FBI cover-up.

    Ivins was an Army scientist and was believed to have been the so-called “Anthrax Killer”, but the series looks at new evidence and has interviews with medical peers who suggest something may have been amiss in the initial FBI investigation.

    The anthrax letters, sent just after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, killed five people and left more than a dozen ill. Ivins was the key suspect but, at age 62, he committed suicide.

    His death on July 29, 2008, from a Tylenol overdose, came as federal prosecutors were just about to present their damning report to a grand jury.

    The letters were filled with refined bacterial spores and mailed to Senate Democratic leaders and various news organizations.

    Two Washington postal workers, a New York hospital worker, a supermarket tabloid photo editor in Florida, and a 94-year-old woman in Connecticut all were killed by the perpetrator’s actions.

    Why Ivins? He had spent 30 years as a microbiologist at the Army’s biological research laboratory at Fort Detrick, Maryland. His job? He was trying to develop a better vaccine against anthrax.

    But tonight you will hear from many experts who dispute his guilt, believing that Ivins was framed in an FBI cover-up.

    Scientists like Dr. Paul Keim and Dr. Henry Heine on the episode speak up for Ivins, saying the contents of a tell-tale RMR 1029 flask that the FBI traced back to Ivins was actually shared with 20 labs.

    There was reasonable doubt and a chance that Ivins was the victim of circumstantial evidence. But who was sophisticated enough to cultivate the deadly anthrax spores? Watch tonight to learn more.

    Deadly Intelligence airs Sundays at 10 pm ET/PT on Science Channel

  19. DXer said

    https://www.genengnews.com/gen-news-highlights/comey-mueller-and-anthrax/81255732

    Comey, Mueller, and Anthrax

    Since eyes and ears are focused these days on James Comey and Robert Mueller, this is still worth pondering:

    James Comey, when he was deputy attorney general, said he was absolutely certain that no mistake was made in the accusation of Dr Steven Hatfill, accused of mailing anthrax spores. After Dr. Hatfill was exonerated and received more than $5.8 million from the government, Mueller then decided that another microbiologist, Dr. Bruce Ivins, was guilty, and after he committed suicide, Mueller pronounced the case closed. A subsequent investigation by the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) suggests Dr. Ivins was innocent as well.

    Today. Dr. Hatfill serves as Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Tropical Medicine at George Washington University Medical Center. Named to the position in January 2011, Dr. Hatfill specializes in training biomedical students for assignments in the jungle. The appointment comes in addition Dr. Hatfill’s post as Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Emergency Medicine at the school.

  20. DXer said

    Off-topic:

    I haven’t read this article yet but find the subject thrilling. Finding it by a google search just now is having a bottle of fine wine delivered — it is something to be savored. Anticipated with weak knees.

    Mobster Dutch Schultz found refuge at Dominick Petrilli’s Newburgh home
    https://www.poughkeepsiejournal.com/story/news/2018/04/17/mobster-dutch-schultz-newburgh-home/521916002/

    Anthony P. Musso, Special to Poughkeepsie Journal Published 8:00 a.m. ET April 17, 2018 | Updated 11:15 a.m. ET April 17, 2018

    On March 22, 2018, I published an analysis for public consumption dating to April 2017. It is titled “Ongoing Searh for Dutch Schultz’s missing millions.”

    http://www.treasuretracer.com/dutch-shultz/ongoing-search-for-dutch-schultzs-missing-millions/

    Not included in that analysis, is that I now personally believe the hiding place to be Maple Ave in Troy — which I discovered as the best possible lead just this month.

    As a second alternative, explored the previous month, I favor one of several streets in Hadley, NY, 3-4 miles northwest of Corinth, NY.

    As for sourcing for Maple Ave in Troy (as opposed to Sixth, where he also had a hideout), the key is the lucky boolean searching of fultonhistory com. To anyone interested, I can send the screen shots of the article giving the Maple Ave reference.

    I believe in crowdsourcing — I would rather you find the $50 million treasure and throw me a million than die with leads not fully explored.

    My daughter, a history buff, and I uploaded a chronologically threaded compilation of historical evidence in 2010. There we concentrated on where he hid the chest for 10 days in Norwalk, CT.

    Dutch Schultz in Fairfield County, Connecticut in 1935 : his horses, his hiding places, and his missing millions | Ross Getman and Grace Getman
    July 16, 2010
    http://www.blurb.com/b/1475537-dutch-schultz-in-fairfield-county-connecticut-in-1

  21. DXer said

    Below is an opinion piece today in the WSJ by former Attorney General Michael Mukasey on Cohen, Mueller, Comey and Amerithrax.

    Leahy says is not really closed and he doesn’t believe an Ivins Theory for a minute. Former Amerithrax head Richard Lambert says FBI is concealing docs exculpatory of Ivins.

    The FBI should produce the documents sought in pending FOIA litigation.

    Trump, Cohen and Attorney-Client Privilege
    The protection has limits, but is it worth testing them over a possible campaign-finance offense?

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-cohen-and-attorney-client-privilege-1524005565

    By
    Michael B. Mukasey
    April 17, 2018 6:52 p.m. ET

    Oddly, an episode involving a poison no doubt familiar to all three madmen [Assad, Putin and Kim Jong Un) mentioned in the first paragraph gives pause.

    After anthrax spores killed five people, infected 17 others, and showed up in envelopes mailed to U.S. senators and media organizations in 2001, the current special counsel, then director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, spent years chasing and destroying the reputation of a microbiologist named Steven Hatfill, zealous in the belief that Mr. Hatfill was the guilty party. Another zealot, James Comey, then deputy attorney general, said he was “absolutely certain” no mistake had been made.

    After Mr. Hatfill was exonerated—he received more than $5.5 million in damages from the government—Mr. Mueller then decided that another microbiologist, Bruce Ivins, was the culprit. When Ivins committed suicide, Mr. Mueller pronounced the case closed. A subsequent investigation by the National Academy of Sciences suggests Ivins too was innocent.

    Mr. Mukasey served as U.S. attorney general (2007-09) and a U.S. district judge (1988-2006).

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    • DXer said

      Er, um, wait… This is odd. As Attorney General, Michael Mukasey was former FBI Director Mueller’s boss during the Amerithrax investigation. He was the Big Kahuna with responsible for overseeing conduct of the investigation.

      Wasn’t Michael Mukasey the United States Attorney General when the FBI announced at a press conference in early August 2008 that Bruce Ivins — who had recently killed himself after the stained panties were found and he was being tested for DNA — was the mailer of the anthrax in Fall 2001?

      Can Attorney Mukasey at least advocate that the emails quoted and relied upon by the FBI in stating its Ivins Theory and later closing the case are in fact released in compliance with FOIA (subject to any required redaction)? The rule of law — rather than party politics — should govern everyone’s choices on the issue.

      The rationale of the White House (under Obama) later reasoned that it would not reopen the case was simply that it would serve to embarrass the FBI. (Funny how compliance with FOIA will sometimes debunk someone’s theory and factual claims, thus leading to embarrassment). This week is the scheduled release of a $38 book of a lead investigator who pursued the failed Hatfill and Ivins Theories. The book shows absolutely no self-awareness of the gaps in proof and merely indirectly confirms the weakness of the Ivins Theory.

      FBI to release evidence in anthrax case,
      Science News
      August 5, 2008

      James Vicini
      https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-anthrax/fbi-to-release-evidence-in-anthrax-case-idUSN0135345720080805

      Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
      http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    • DXer said

      From August 2008:

      Concerns about the FBI’s circumstantial case against military microbiologist Bruce Ivins are reaching Capitol Hill.

      Last night, Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA) sent a three-page letter to Attorney General Michael Mukasey and FBI Director Robert Mueller III, asking them ….:

      “What additional documents will be released, if any, and when will they be released?”

      https://talkingpointsmemo.com/muckraker/img-src-http-talkingpointsmemo-com-images-anthrax-sort-muck-jpg-vspace-5-hspace-5-align-left-capitol-hill-questions-fbi-anthrax-investigation-where-s-the-polygraph

      Comment:

      It was Attorney General Michael Mukasey who never released under FOIA the emails quoted and relied upon by the FBI in its Amerithrax Summary.

      FOIAs for Ivins’ emails were submitted by the likes (to name just one) of Pulitzer Prize winner Scott Shane of the New York Times. The FBI should comply with the FOIA request. Complying with the rule of law ten years late is better than never.

      The FBI culled the Sept-October 2001 emails showing how Ivins was spending his time from the production made by John Peterson of the USAMRMC; he sent the batches of emails to a large committee of DOJ and FBI officials and was instructed by email what to pull from the production. The DOJ/FBI officials culled the ones referring to the need for the late night and weekend animal checks — that was necessary to allow the DOJ/FBI to argue that Ivins had no reason to be in the B3 lab those hours. (When, actually, checking the animals was a one-person, two hour job).

      The DOJ IG should obtain those emails to see the emails that were culled — and then produce the emails that continue to be wrongfully withheld in violation of the FOIPA statute.

      The FBI and DOJ officials responsible for the continued withholding of the Sept-October 2001 emails should be fired.

    • DXer said

      A Higher Sanctimony

      Comey’s memoir shows he is more like Trump than he cares to admit.

      This has been the habit across Mr. Comey’s career, though you’ll find no mention in his memoir of Steven Hatfill, the government scientist he wrongly pursued for years as the anthrax terrorist …

      A presidential bully who abuses power needs to be checked, but so does an FBI director who turns righteousness into zealotry.

      https://www.wsj.com/articles/a-higher-sanctimony-1524006461

    • DXer said

      Michael Cohen has floated 4 names for Special Master to review the seized documents. One is Joan McPhee. I knew her at Law School on the Review in 1984 where she was Articles Editor and then in 1985 at Foley Square where we clerked. She would be an impeccable choice — she has a very judicious manner. I think of her judgment and character as beyond reproach. She would make a great federal judge.

      But even with Attorney McPhee’s dispassionate fair-mindedness offered up as a possible way out of the mess, things appear to be so serious for the Trump Presidency that Republicans might start considering 2020 hindsight — and line up behind a Pence-Haley ticket.

      Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
      http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  22. DXer said

    What does Attorney Cohen say about this?

    FBI may have seized recorded conversations from Trump’s attorney
    By Kara Scannell, Gloria Borger and Sara Murray, CNN

    Updated 9:51 PM ET, Thu April 12, 2018
    https://www.cnn.com/2018/04/12/politics/michael-cohen-fbi-raid-recordings/index.html

    Washington (CNN)Donald Trump’s personal attorney often recorded telephone conversations both before and during the 2016 presidential campaign that likely have been scooped up in the FBI raid on attorney Michael Cohen’s apartment, office and hotel room, according to sources familiar with the matter.

    These recorded conversations, according to one source, were even played back at times to candidate Trump and associates, the source said. Among the recordings were discussions about the campaign and interactions with the media, the source said.

    Some of the recordings may have been on the cellphones or computers that were seized by the FBI during Monday’s raid. It’s likely to raise concerns among Trump allies that the recordings are under review because of the uncertainty over what was recorded.

    Comment:

    11 states made it illegal to tape phone calls absent both parties’ consent. If the conversation lacks the other party’s consent and involves a speaker in one of these 11 states, is the content admissible in a legal proceeding?

    Eleven states require the consent of every party to a phone call or conversation in order to make the recording lawful. These “two-party consent” laws have been adopted in California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania and Washington.
    Recording Phone Calls and Conversations | Digital Media Law Project

    http://www.dmlp.org/legal-guide/recording-phone-calls-and-conversations

  23. DXer said

    Devin Nunes Threatens to Impeach DOJ’s Rod Rosenstein and FBI’s Chris Wray
    By Graham Lanktree On 4/11/18 at 4:41 AM
    http://www.newsweek.com/devin-nunes-has-plan-impeach-dojs-rod-rosenstein-and-fbis-chris-wray-880290

    “We are going to get the two pages. So they can either cough them up now or it will get really complicating starting tomorrow night and we’ll have to take all the necessary steps to get the documents.”

    Comment:

    Is Devin Nunes the best person to raise a conflict of interest issue given that he is supposed to be recused from the Russia investigation?

    The process Nunes contemplates would be to turn to a federal district court and have the document submitted in camera to the Court.
    The DOJ likely agrees that is the appropriate process. The rule of law contemplates no less.

    That also is what should be done with the memo by the former lead prosecutor in Amerithrax, Richard Lambert, that the FBI is refusing to produce to FOIA litigant Dillon. (The former lead prosecutor reports that the FBI is withholding a staggering amount of information potentially exculpatory of Bruce Ivins).

    As for the Sept-October 2001 emails — so extensively quoted and relied upon by the FBI — should simply be located and produced. They can be redacted as FBI deems appropriate.

    It appears that the reason they are not being produced is that they debunk the claims made in the book released last year by R. Scott Decker. He charges $38 for a book spinning the emails — while his former colleagues won’t produce the emails that Decker expressly cites and relies upon.

  24. DXer said

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/white-house-says-trump-has-power-to-fire-mueller-1523406965

    “Federal prosecutors in Brooklyn are exploring matters related to Mr. Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, while New York state investigators are also scrutinizing Mr. Trump’s associates.”

    Comment:

    As to the federal investigation/s, will the President start handing out pardons like party favors rather than attempting to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller?

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/jacobfrenkel/2017/07/21/president-trump-can-preemptively-pardon-his-advisors-and-family-but-will-he/#8779e246c3bb

    Wouldn’t it have been easier to simply direct that the FBI comply with FOIA in connection with Mr. Mueller’s biggest “whodunnit”?
    If the FBI truly cannot find the emails, then FBI Director Wray could simply have someone better at finding things look.

  25. DXer said

    High Nunes

    • DXer said

      FBI Raids Office of Trump’s Longtime Lawyer Michael Cohen

      New York Times-2 minutes ago
      The F.B.I. on Monday raided the office of President Trump’s longtime personal lawyer, Michael D. Cohen, seizing records related to several topics including payments to a pornographic-film actress. Federal prosecutors in Manhattan obtained the search warrant after receiving a referral from the special counsel, Robert S.

  26. DXer said

    Jonathan Turley, the defense counsel for “anthrax weapons suspect” Ali Timimi [Andrew Card’s former assistant at DOT], was not even allowed to see the information gathered under FISA.

    DOJ now argues in court that the evidence against “anthrax weapons suspect” Ali Al-Timimi was derived from FISA and not NSA wiretaps
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on September 30, 2015

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    Trump accuses FBI of slow-walking documents requested by House panel: What do they ‘have to hide?’

    Posted 6:16 pm, April 7, 2018, by CNN Wire

    http://wtvr.com/2018/04/07/trump-accuses-fbi-of-slow-walking-documents-requested-by-house-panel-what-do-they-have-to-hide/

    President Donald Trump on Saturday accused the Department of Justice of slow-walking “documents relating to FISA abuse,” Hillary Clinton’s emails, former FBI Director James Comey and others, and asked what it and the FBI “have to hide.”

    “Lawmakers of the House Judiciary Committee are angrily accusing the Department of Justice of missing the Thursday Deadline for turning over UNREDACTED Documents relating to FISA abuse, FBI, Comey …and much more,” Trump wrote. “Slow walking – what is going on? BAD!”

    “What does the Department of Justice and FBI have to hide?” Trump asked in a follow-up tweet. “Why aren’t they giving the strongly requested documents (unredacted) to the HOUSE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE? Stalling, but for what reason? Not looking good!”SNBC should have its favorite son on to explain some of the context of FISA.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  27. DXer said

    Trump criticizes FBI and Justice Dept., asks what they ‘have to hide’

    https://www.cnn.com/2018/04/07/politics/trump-doj-fbi-fisa/index.html

    By Clare Foran, CNN

    Updated 2:20 AM ET, Sun April 8, 2018

    “Republican Rep. Mark Meadows vented his frustration over the missed deadline on Twitter this week.

    “The deadline for the subpoena issued by Chairman Goodlatte was today at noon,” he wrote. “We got no documents from the Department of Justice. Just a phone call. This is unacceptable — it’s time to stop the games. Turn over the documents to Congress and allow us to conduct oversight.”

    Last year, the House Judiciary Committee and the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee announced a joint investigation into the conduct of the Justice Department in 2016. The announcement referenced a series of controversial actions taken by the FBI”

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  28. DXer said

    Is the Anti-Mueller Smear Campaign a Coordinated Attack?

    As the special counsel closes in, Trumpworld appears to be fighting back as one.

    by Abigail Tracy
    March 28, 2018 1
    https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2018/03/donald-trump-robert-mueller-attacks

    “Why does the Mueller team have 13 hardened Democrats, some big Crooked Hillary supporters, and Zero Republicans?” he seethed on Twitter. Within hours, Politico notes, the Drudge Report was promoting a story blaming Mueller for the F.B.I.’s bungled investigation into the 2001 anthrax scare, which took place on his watch as director, and had launched a live poll on whether Trump should fire Mueller.

    Comment:

    As noted at the time, what was unusual was that the articles that Drudge linked were from a month or two ago — ordinarily Drudge links current articles.

    But, no, if the mainstream media stopped being distracted by shiny things, the issues relating to the anthrax investigation have been pending all along.

    I’m not a defender of the President. I’m a defender of the rule of law and the FBI’s obligation to comply with FOIA with respect to the emails that it quoted and relied upon in the Amerithrax Summary (and also the sworn Dellefera Affidavit in support of the search of Ivins’ residence).

    Former FBI Director Mueller, I suspect, if you asked him, would favor their production too. Any applicable FOIA exemptions would still permit any required redaction.

    Archibald Cox was my hero and two-time Professor. One of the courses he taught was Labor Law. (We served up a birthday cake on his 70th with little pickets). Another class was a seminar on the First Amendment. If he were alive and parsing out FOIA statute applicability to Dillon’s request for the Sept-October 2001 emails being withheld, he would look up at the FBI Assistant General Counsel responsible for the withholding, and be waiting for an explanation.

    As for the continued withholding, and while patiently waiting, he might wryly note that people have been fired for less.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  29. DXer said

    https://www.rawstory.com/2018/03/trumps-attacks-mueller-orchestrated-signal-fox-news-allies-go-buck-wild-special-counsel/

    Trump’s attacks on Mueller orchestrated as signal to Fox News allies …

    Raw Story-11 minutes ago
    According to a Politico report, when Trump attacked Mueller on Twitter, his supporters went off online. In only a few hours the Drudge Report had a story accusing Mueller for the FBI’s investigation into the 2001 anthrax attacks. Mueller ran the bureau at the time.

  30. DXer said

    Trump attack unleashes oppo against Mueller

    ‘It looks like the beginnings of a campaign,’ said a source familiar with Trump’s legal strategy.

    By DARREN SAMUELSOHN

    03/28/2018 05:01 AM EDT

    https://www.politico.com/story/2018/03/28/trump-mueller-russia-probe-488695

    When President Donald Trump lashed out against Robert Mueller by name earlier this month, the president’s supporters sprang into action—treating the chief Russia investigator to political campaign-style opposition research.

    Within hours, the Drudge Report featured a story blaming Mueller, the special counsel leading the Justice Department’s Russia probe, for the FBI’s clumsy investigation into the 2001 anthrax attacks when Mueller ran the bureau. The independent pro-Trump journalist Sara Carter posted a story charging that Mueller, as a federal prosecutor in Boston in the mid-1980s, had covered up the FBI’s dealings with the Mafia informant Whitey Bulger. Carter was soon discussing her findings in prime time with Fox News host Sean Hannity.

    Meanwhile, Trump supporters on Twitter circulated video of testimony Mueller gave to Congress ahead of the 2003 Iraq War in which he endorsed the view, later proven false, that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction.

    ***

    Hannity also devoted television airtime to the special counsel each night last week, including an interview with Carter where he asked her to elaborate on her story about Mueller’s work as a federal prosecutor in Boston and criticism that the FBI had withheld information about its interactions with Bulger, a former organized crime boss and federal government informant who evaded police for 16 years until his 2011 arrest.

    “We’ve got to tell the story about Mueller,” she said. “We’re not hearing all the facts about Robert Mueller.”

    Comment:

    Now if only former FBI Director Mueller botched the Isabella Gardner art heist investigation, and that insight led to the paintings.

    For the purpose of this blog, I think the most pressing issue at bar is whether FOIA requires production of the emails that the FBI — led by Director Mueller — quoted and relied upon in closing the Amerithrax investigation. The FBI has withheld all of them — having pulled them from the Army’s production (pursuant to written emails to USAMRMC Official John Peterson). The legal issues relating to whether they are subject to production — now that the case is closed — are not complicated. Moreover, the FBI CAN in fact lay their hands on them, despite claims otherwise.

    Once the withheld emails are produced, we will be in a better position to assess Mueller’s handling of Amerithrax. Kenneth Dillon’s FOIA request also seeks some part of the Richard Lambert’s memorandum to Mueller in which he said that compartmentalization of the investigation would prevent the dots from being correctly connected. Lambert, who has high regard for Mueller, was the lead investigator and now reports that the FBI is withholding a staggering amount of potentially exculpatory information.

    At the end of the day, I think Amerithrax was a difficult mystery and no one has shown that they could do better than Mueller in real time. Reasonable people can disagree about a difficult whodunnit.

    But here is some advice to the partisans who would like to derail Special Counsel Mueller: Force production of those documents that are being withheld under FOIA without a valid, applicable exemption. When you see how the AUSA and investigators mischaracterized the emails, it will be enough to warrant a full-fledged Congressional probe. Mr. Mueller will have some explaining to do. For example, look to the fact that AUSA Lieber never even mentioned “rabbits” in the Amerithrax Summary or in her public comments.

    Disclaimer: I expect Mueller’s future indictments to be of historic importance.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  31. DXer said

    In my scrabble group, neither the liberals and conservatives think anything will come of the Special Counsel’s Russia investigation — they don’t think that Trump will be impeached. In contrast, I agree with the Dershowitz that few people would be able to withstand that level of scrutiny. It’s really a matter of simple math. If Mueller has 17 or so highly expert and experienced prosecutors on his team, it seems that we have not yet seen the work product of quite a few of them.

    But the tactical opportunity to derail Special Counsel Mueller by exposing any missteps in Amerithrax seems to have passed. Maybe Chris Ruddy (Newsmax), who himself (IMO) was misled by (Newsmax columnist) Ronald Kessler (who is always swayed by his FBI sources), misled the President on this issue of Amerithrax in a passing comment.

    But at this point, the avalanche is coming down the mountain and all that is left to do is to get out of the way.

    Putin’s leverage over Trump, it seems, will soon be surpassed only by Mueller’s.

  32. DXer said

    Here is an article today in a conservative publication about the Amerithrax investigation.

    March 20, 2018
    Much-vaunted Robert Mueller’s record shows bad investigations
    By Monica Showalter
    https://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2018/03/muchvaunted_robert_muellers_record_shows_bad_investigations.html

  33. DXer said

    This February 8, 2018 Federalist article and a May 2017 article in Real Clear Politics was linked today by Drudge.

    Main stream media should update its content by reporting on Kenneth Dillon’s FOIA lawsuit. The online Complaint speaks for itself.

    Robert Mueller Has Been Botching Investigations Since The Anthrax Attacks

    Special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into the anthrax attacks following 9/11 — one of the most important of his career — did not go well, to say the least.
    http://thefederalist.com/2018/02/08/robert-mueller-botching-investigations-since-anthrax-attacks/

    The window is closing on President Trump’s ability to order the FBI to comply with FOIA. FBI Assistant General Counsel Andrew Sand, I believe, is the one overseeing the withholding (with no exemption cited) the withholding of the emails. AUSA Peterson reports (as I am told third-hand) that he is deferring to FBI counsel Sand.

    If President Trump resigns upon an indictment of his son and/or son-in-law, Vice-President could at least encourage the FBI’s compliance with FOIA in light of his previous familiarity with the investigation.
    Reply

    When Comey and Mueller Bungled the Anthrax Case

    By Carl M. Cannon
    RCP Staff
    May 21, 2017
    https://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2017/05/21/when_comey_and_mueller_bungled_the_anthrax_case_133953.html

  34. DXer said

    In advance of a Congressional probe, it would be helpful simply for a federal district court judge to identify the FBI employee responsible for the continued withholding of the emails quoted and relied upon in the Amerithrax Summary, especially those from September and October 2001, which likely bear on what he was doing in the lab in the weeks prior to the mailings.

    For example, here is an example of an email that was pulled from production — when the emails were produced (upon vetting by the DOJ and FBI officials).

    It was then later produced only upon a requested physical search of hard copy documents of Ivins office by the Army.

    It relates specifically to a time when the FBI theorized that the reason for Ivins’ late hours was to make a weaponized anthrax — when it actually shows he had been directed to clean up. (The request to clean up the place had been made by none other than the distinguished scientist who later served as the FBI’s lead consulting genetics expert on the 4 morphs). The expert presented the findings before the NAS on the morphs. (That expert, by the way, PW, has explained that she thinks Ivins is innocent). The Queen of the Universe was a playful reference — and as I recall she had a T-shirt made up with the phrase that she showed at Bruce’s funeral. (Internet poster’s Lake’s interpretation that this was an angry e-mail was very uninformed).

    “Ex-FBI official: Agency is hiding evidence in anthrax case,” Chicago Tribune, April 15, 2015
    http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/chi-fbi-hiding-evidence-anthrax-case-20150415-story.html

    FoxNews, “Former agent claims FBI concealing evidence in anthrax case,” April 20, 2015
    http://video.foxnews.com/v/4184909385001/?#sp=show-clips

    NYT interview of former lead Amerithrax investigator Richard Lambert: “a staggering amount of exculpatory evidence” regarding Dr. Ivins remains secret
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on July 16, 2016
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2016/07/16/nyt-interview-of-former-lead-amerithrax-investigator-richard-lambert-a-staggering-amount-of-exculpatory-evidence-regarding-dr-ivins-remains-secret/

  35. DXer said

    It seems that bio and chem WMD attribution will remain an issue in the modern world.

    Hundreds urged to wash clothes after UK nerve agent attack
    Henry Nicholls, Alex Fraser
    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-russia-hammond/hundreds-urged-to-wash-clothes-after-uk-nerve-agent-attack-idUSKCN1GN0AK

    SALISBURY, England (Reuters) – Hundreds of people who visited the Zizzi restaurant or the Mill pub in the English city of Salisbury were told on Sunday to wash their clothes after traces of nerve agent used to attack a former Russian spy last week were found at both sites.

    Public Health England said there was no immediate health risk to anyone who may have been in either the restaurant or the pub, but their was a small chance that any of the agent that had come into contact with clothing or belongings could still be present in minute amounts and contaminate skin.

    ***

    SMALL RISK

    Public Health England said it had weighed new evidence before issuing its advice on Sunday, and it said the general public had not been at risk in the days since the attack.

    “This is about a very, very small risk of repetitive contact for any traces of contamination that people may have taken out,” Public Health England’s deputy medical director Jenny Harries said at the same press conference.

    • DXer said

      Contamination in ex-spy case ups pressure on UK to act
      By gregory katz and jo kearney, associated press
      SALISBURY, England — Mar 11, 2018, 7:42 PM ET
      http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/uk-media-traces-nerve-agent-found-spy-poisoning-53665191

      “But they advised people who had patronized the businesses during a two-day period to wash their clothes, double-bag articles for dry cleaning, and wipe down items like jewelry.
      ***

      They described the safety advice as precautions to prevent any ill effects that might come from repeated contact with minute amounts of the nerve agent.

      Harries said there was no evidence restaurant and bar patrons had gotten traces of poison on their clothes, but that it was “practical” to take proactive steps. Even so, Harries said clothing with traces of contamination would not cause harm after a few days; problems might develop if there was “repetitive” exposure over weeks and months, she said.

      ***
      The government’s health warning said that any clothing worn in the pub or restaurant on March 4 or March 5 should be washed in “an ordinary washing machine using your regular detergent at the temperature recommended for the clothing.

      It also said to “wipe personal items such as phones, handbags and other electronic items with cleansing or baby wipes and dispose of the wipes in the bin.” It urged people to make sure to wash their hands afterward.

      Investigators hope they can pinpoint where the nerve agent was made, which could help determine who was behind the attack. Forensics experts wearing full body protective gear continue seeking evidence in Salisbury, where the sites include the Zizzi restaurant and the gravesites where Skripal’s wife and son are buried. Skripal’s house has also been extensively searched for clues and traces of the nerve agent.

      Officials say more than 250 counterterrorism officers are on the scene evaluating more than 240 pieces of evidence and interviewing about 200 witnesses.

      They are backed by roughly 180 military personnel providing logistical support, including the removal of ambulances feared to possibly be contaminated by the nerve agent.”

      Comment: I doubt dry cleaners are pleased with the advice. If clothes might be affected with a nerve agent, might the better course be to double or triple bag them and throw them out?

  36. DXer said

    Jessie K. Liu nominated to be U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia
    By Justin Wm. Moyer June 12, 2017
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/jessie-k-liu-nominated-to-be-us-attorney-for-the-district-of-columbia/2017/06/12/be8100c4-4fc2-11e7-91c9-68d33b3025aa_story.html?utm_term=.5fb5e3e839ee

    Jessie K. Liu, a former Justice Department deputy assistant attorney general, was nominated to be U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia, the White House said in a statement Monday.

    A Yale Law School graduate, Liu was formerly an assistant U.S. attorney in the District and worked in the Department of Justice’s national security division.

    Comment:

    In the linked article Roscoe C. Howard, Jr, “U.S. attorney for the District from 2001 to 2004,” praised the choice — noting “She knows the office and the office knows her.”

    Roscoe C. Howard Jr. headed Amerithrax when the Hatfill theory was leaked. His head of criminal Seikaly pled the Fifth Amendment and then his daughter represented anthrax suspect Ali-Al-Timimi for free. Ali was next door to Alibek’s assistant and in the suite with Alibek and the former USAMRIID Commander, Bailey. The Ames anthrax researchers Alibek and Bailey (at least their talented employees and DARPA subcontractors) worked with silica. Their work with virulent Ames was done at the Southern Research Institute, where the B3 came to be headed by Bruce Ivins’ assistant, Patricia. His emails to his assistant and a former assistant were central to the FBI’s Ivins Theory. Those emails are being sought by Ken Dillon in federal district court litigation now defended by US Attorney Jessica Liu.

    Roscoe Howard’s civil deposition, the former head of Amerithrax who praises the choice of Liu, is among those here:

    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.files.wordpress.com/2010/01/amerithrax-depositions-vol-4.pdf

    The civil deposition of Roscoe Howard’s head of criminal, Attorney Seikaly, is among here. You see he pleads the Fifth Amendment repeatedly for leaking the hyped Hatfill Theory, to include the infamous (supposedly) anthrax smelling bloodhounds Lucy and Tinkerbelle.

    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.files.wordpress.com/2010/01/amerithrax-depositions-vol-7.pdf

    Who does former lead Amerithrax prosecutor Daniel Seikaly and his daughter, Ali Al-Timimi’s former defense counsel, think is responsible for the anthrax mailings of Fall 2001?
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 22, 2011
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/05/22/who-does-former-prosecutor-daniel-seikaly-and-his-daughter-ali-al-timimis-former-defense-counsel-think-is-responsible-for-the-anthrax-mailings-of-fall-2001/

    Now, it is inevitable that counsel of such high distinction will tend to travel in the same circles — and it is a good thing that our US Attorneys in the District of Columbia has experience in both the DOJ’s National Security Division and the US Attorneys Office that handled Amerithrax.

    Quick question: did she work in the office and know the goings-on that led to the turmoil that engulfed the office at the time AUSA Lieber was working on the Amerithrax Summary that selectively and misleadingly quotes and relies heavily on? The emails being wrongfully and outrageously withheld?

    Unfortunately, although it is our government’s interest to have such talented and highly experienced people keeping us safe — it may have led (once again) to a situation where the person overseeing the withholding of the documents that being withheld by the FBI — after selectively quoting from them — has had a connection to Amerithrax and is motivated to cover the office’s ass for botching Amerithrax.

    • DXer said

      Judging from DOJ press release,FN/ it seems that the US Attorney worked under Daniel Seikaly, the fellow who pled the Fifth Amendment at deposition about leaking the hyped Hatfill stories that derailed the Amerithrax investigation for 7 years. [His daughter later came to represent “anthrax weapons suspect” (to borrow defense counsel’s phrase) Ali Al-Timimi pro bono.]

      I would ask, respectfully, that — although I have personal confidence in her utmost good faith — that she consider recusing herself given the apparent conflict of interest. The purpose of Dillon’s request is to show that her former boss and US Attorneys Office botched Amerithrax. She was there at the time working under Attorney Seikaly. At the least, consider that not recusing would merely serve to embed error in disposition of the FOIA claim for the withheld emails.

      Such a senior attorney would not actually be doing the drafting itself — the name of the person overseeing 300 attorneys typically just gets put on top as a formality — and so it won’t inconvenience things as a practical matter.

      But the name itself implicates responsibility for decision-making on the withholding.

      And veritas is more than just a nice slogan.

      The head of the Amerithrax prosecution Daniel Seikaly pled the Fifth Amendment about leaking the hyped Hatfill stories that derailed the Amerithrax investigation for 7 years. His daughter later came to represent “anthrax weapons suspect” (to borrow defense counsel’s phrase) Ali Al-Timimi pro bono. GAO: Was an apparent conflict of interest avoided on the grounds that her representation began after her father left DOJ? Or was there a continuing appearance of a conflict of interest?
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on September 3, 2011
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/09/03/the-head-of-the-amerithrax-prosecution-daniel-seikaly-pled-the-fifth-amendment-about-leaking-the-hyped-hatfill-stories-that-derailed-the-amerithrax-investigation-for-7-years-his-daughter-later-ca/

      Who does former lead Amerithrax prosecutor Daniel Seikaly and his daughter, Ali Al-Timimi’s former defense counsel, think is responsible for the anthrax mailings of Fall 2001?
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 22, 2011
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/05/22/who-does-former-prosecutor-daniel-seikaly-and-his-daughter-ali-al-timimis-former-defense-counsel-think-is-responsible-for-the-anthrax-mailings-of-fall-2001/

      DXer reflects on Amerithrax … the FBI’s compartmentalized investigation led to investigative failure
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on October 15, 2009
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2009/10/15/dxer-reflects-on-amerithrax-the-fbi%e2%80%99s-compartmentalized-investigation-led-to-investigative-failure/

      FN/
      “In addition to her work in private practice, U.S. Attorney Liu has extensive experience with the Department of Justice. From 2002 until 2006, she was an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, handling criminal and appellate cases. She then moved to the Department of Justice, where she served in a series of positions until 2009, including Deputy Chief of Staff for the National Security Division, Counsel to the Deputy Attorney General, and Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Civil Rights Division.

      “I am honored to return to the United States Attorney’s Office and looking forward to working with the people here, our many law enforcement partners, and the community,” said U.S. Attorney Liu.

      U.S. Attorney Liu graduated with honors from Harvard University in 1995 and obtained her juris doctorate from Yale Law School in 1998.

  37. DXer said

    Ironically, US Attorney Jessica Liu, who inexplicably is withholding all of the emails that the FBI relied upon in closing the Amerithrax investigation — that is, withholding the emails that this blog ventures will debunk the FBI’s Ivins Theory — is the one personally picked by President Trump after a rare interview.

    She is withholding the emails — without any stated justification other than the unstated implication that the dog ate them — even though (this blog ventures) they may show that Robert Mueller botched the Amerithrax, the biggest whodunnit of his career.

    Now she, of course, in this case, is in the position merely of enforcing the FOIPA. But word is that the AUSA with hands-on responsibility simply did not forward to the FBI the letter proving the emails exist and were expressly relied upon by the FBI in CLOSING the investigation. So far we have evidence (based on hearsay) only of the current DOJ and FBI bungling of things, not former Director Mueller.

    On the merits, given that the former Amerithrax investigator has said that the FBI has selectively presented evidence in support of its Ivins Theory, I think fair play REQUIRES that the emails be produced — subject to any (b)(6) or other exemptions that are applicable.

    FOX NEWS interview with RICHARD LAMBERT … Former agent claims FBI concealing evidence in anthrax case
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on April 22, 2015
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2015/04/22/fox-news-interview-with-richard-lambert-former-agent-claims-fbi-concealing-evidence-in-anthrax-case/

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    But to claim that they FBI cannot find them is a LIE. And if they were destroyed, that constitutes spoliation of evidence.

    President has rare meeting with US attorney nominee
    By Laura Jarrett, CNN
    https://www.cnn.com/2017/07/20/politics/donald-trump-jessie-liu-dc-us-attorney/index.html

    Updated 8:52 PM ET, Thu July 20, 2017

    Jessie Liu, the current deputy general counsel for the Treasury Department who Trump tapped to be the next US attorney for the District of Columbia, disclosed in her responses to the Senate Judiciary Committee that she met with the President as part of her interview process.
    “I attended formal interviews at the Department of Justice, including with the attorney general,” Liu wrote in the Senate submission obtained by CNN. “I also interviewed with representatives of the White House Counsel’s Office and then met the President with the White House counsel.”

  38. DXer said

    https://www.muckrock.com/news/archives/2018/mar/07/foia-exemption-b7/

    Nine Days of FOIA Exemptions: b(7)

    It’s six denials for the price of one with the infamous law enforcement exemption

    Written by JPat Brown
    Edited by Michael Morisy
    With Sunshine Week just around the corner, we wanted to count down the days to our favorite time of year with a closer look at what’s going on behind the black bars: the nine federal FOIA exemptions. Today, strap yourself in for the long-haul because we’re looking at b(7) – the law enforcement exemption.

    Exemption Name: b(7) a b c d e f

    AKA : “The Law Enforcement Exemption” “Somewhere A FOIA Officer is Reciting the ‘Those Walls have to be Guarded by Men with Guns’ Speech”

    Common Reactions: “Hey, look who’s being investigated by the FBI!” / “Oh crap, am I going to get investigated by the FBI?”

    What it says: Records or information compiled for law enforcement purposes, but only to the extent that the production of such law enforcement records or information:

    A. Could reasonably be expected to interfere with enforcement proceedings

    B. Would deprive a person of a right to a fair trial or an impartial adjudication

    C. Could reasonably be expected to constitute an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy

    D. Could reasonably be expected to disclose the identity of confidential source, including a state, local, or foreign agency or authority or any private institution that furnished information on a confidential basis, and, in the case of a record or information compiled by a criminal law enforcement authority in the course of a criminal investigation or by an agency conducting a lawful national security intelligence investigation, information furnished by a confidential source

    E. Would disclose techniques and procedures for law enforcement investigations or prosecutions or would disclose guidelines for law enforcement investigations or prosecutions if such disclosure could reasonably be expected to risk circumvention of the law

    F. Could reasonably be expected to endanger the life or physical safety or any individual.”

    What that means: b(7) is actually six separate exemptions, all concerning law enforcement records. Breaking it down for each one, we’ve got …

    A. There’s an open/ongoing investigation. As Emma Best has written about before, the guidance surrounding the proper use of b(7)a makes it pretty clear that this should only be used under those circumstances, not just because an agency is thinking about investigating them at some point.

    B. Similar to b(7)a, but for an imminent trial – “imminent” being the operative word.

    C. Basically the b(6) exemption, but specifically applied to law enforcement records. Hunter S. Thompson’s wife, Anita, has her weight redacted from her driver’s license under b(7)c in his Federal Bureau if Investigation file.

    D. Anything that might disclose a confidential informant – expect to see a lot of these in old FBI files.

    E. “Law enforcement techniques” which more broadly means anything that they do that that they don’t want you to know about – use of emerging surveillance technologies, for example.

    F. Information that would put people – typically law enforcement – at risk. As you can imagine, that one’s open to a lot of interpretation.

    Who uses it? Department of Justice and Homeland Security are in a dead heat each year to see how much they can exempt under b(7).

    ***

    Happy appeals!

  39. DXer said

    The emails were identified by date a month ago to AUSA BENTON G. PETERSON. If he didn’t bother to provide the letter to FBI (as reported third-hand to me) in some sort of “law office failure”, then he is the individual responsible for the FBI not producing them.

    If he DID provide the letter to the FBI, the person who received it and did not have the emails pulled is responsible.

  40. DXer said

    The FBI pulled emails from production relating to how Ivins spent his time during the weeks immediately before the mailings. But after the mailing, for example, we have the email to “Pat Fellows in Florida” (where she was helping the FBI) dated October 30, 2001 at 7:05 a.m. in which Ivins writes Pat: “Can you believe, this QB?? Deborah McKenzie now says that we have “weaponized” the Ames strain. INCREDIBLE!!!! – Bruce”

    Bruce exhibited the same animation when FBI Agent R. Scott Decker met him in-person, and Pat was present. See his recent book. Mr. Decker says it was that moment that he came to suspect Ivins was guilty. Ha! His evidence? It was the same gut feeling that informed Nancy Haigwood’s opinion of the case. Ivins did NOT know that an FBI scientist at USAMRIID (Ezzell) had in fact made a dried powder for DARPA out of Flask 1029 for research purposes. He came to know that later. There is nothing that has been shown that indicates that Ivins knew of the FBI’s expert’s at USAMRIID.

    As for whether it was sent to ATCC in Northern VA — who told the RIID spokesperson that ATCC was given Ames? James Bannan, the leading FBI scientist, had been the scientist in charge of the bacteriology section of that culture repository. ATCC shared space with Ken Alibek’s company, Hadron, at GMU. Ken Alibek told me — and the documents show — that his company was supplied Ames by 1999. (It came from an Israeli scientist, as I recall, who was working at NIH). He had virulent Ames — the work was done at Southern Research Institute. (I spoke with Ken about the outside company that did the research).

    Pat Fellows came to head the BL-3 lab at Southern Research Institute there not so long after this email from Bruce. While Bruce may not have been the one to supply ATCC/Alibek Ames, it was the FBI and Pat Fellows who would have known about Alibek’s company with Ames — that is, along with FBI’s scientists. In September 2002, when it was reported that Alibek was of keen investigative interest, Ivins forwarded the article with an exclamation “Very interesting!”

    A whistleblower once called me to tell me that convicted seditionist who had an office next to Alibek had full access to the ATCC culture repository — you know, the one that the FBI scientist JB oversaw. Ali Al-TImimi received two life sentences for some conversations he had with some young jihadis who wanted to go abroad to defend their faith. An attorney who had BL-4 experience, she was let go within her 2 week probationary period when raised the issue of the incredibly lax security.

    Do you think the FBI maybe should release the emails to Pat Fellows and Mara Linscott it quoted and relied upon in its Amerithrax Summary to see if they have fairly characterized them? By my count, they are withholding every freaking one they quoted and relied upon in closing the case. I appreciate that conflicts of interest are sometimes difficult to avoid in a small field — and I credit everyone’s good faith except Dr. Ayman Zawahiri — but those conflicts of interest require the utmost transparency. Here, the lead FBI scientist Jason B. might have been subject to millions in civil liability if it was found that he had allowed a convicted seditionsist access to the largest microbiological repository in the world. (As it is, have you ever wondered why Ali Al-Timimi’s trial is partly classified? As Senator Leahy has said, the FBI just classifies its mistakes so they don’t come to light. Sunlight — compliance with the law, with FOIA — is the best disinfectant.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  41. DXer said

    This new book has a section on Ivins and a section on Hatfill.

    Chemical and Biological Weapons and Terrorism 1st Edition

    by Anthony Tu (Author)

    At page 110, Professor Tu writes:

    “The FBI tried to convince everyone, including congressional members, that Ivins was the perpetrator, but many people continued to believe that the evidence was only circumstantial and might not stand up in court.” (p. 110)

    The Professor writes: “without solid physical evidence the case against Ivins might not have held up in court. I followed this case with great interest because at one time, I had a research contract with USAMRIID and visited the institute twice. My friend Dr. David [ Franz ], the former commander of USAMRIID, told me many stories, and said Ivins was a very likable person and got along with his colleagues. When the news broke that Ivins was the main suspect of bioterrorism, everyone was surprised and could not believe that he could do such a thing.”

    On bentonite:

    Dr. Tu writes at page 106: “At the time, he [Ivins] testified that the white powder contained anthrax spores with the stabilizer of bentonite.”

    “Testify” seems an inapt word. And he would not have been conducting an elemental analysis — that was for AFIP, which detected Silicon and Oxygen. But who were the four sources at Ft. Detrick Matsumoto (ABC) was referring to that reported that it appeared that the powder had been treated with bentonite? Was Ivins one of them? If true — and it seems very reasonable given that Ivins did have eyes on the anthrax — that would be interesting and new information.

    Perhaps Professor Tu heard that from his friend, Dr. Franz. I’ve emailed Professor Tu to ask so as to establish the sourcing and avoid perpetuating any error.

    We knew that Ivins knew of Matsumoto because not longer earlier he had told a colleague that Matsumoto could kiss his ass (that he had received all that he was going to under FOIA). I’ve spoken to Gary and he never mentioned that he had spoken to Ivins or been in contact about his examination of the powder— so that would be interesting news if true.

    At the time, Ari Fleischer, the White House spokesperson, urged that this suggestion about bentonite was just an opinionated analysis unsupported by any scientific report. General Parker — who oversaw USAMRIID — agreed. He said that if there were bentonite, aluminum would have been detected.

    The late blog participant, Stuart Jacobsen, obtained the AFIP report (AFIP did the elemental analysis) under FOIA at the request and with the support of this blog. (It took a Maryland attorney’s letter appealing the denial to nudge the disclosure).

    The issue points to the importance of FOIA in resolving uncertainties.

    On a subject relevant to the importance of Dillon’s pending FOIA request, note that Dr. Tu writes:

    “He constantly thought of his college girlfriend, and called and mailed her letters. Sometimes he would sign his name to the letters. The girlfriend also notified the FBI about his peculiar behavior.”

    No.

    I believe Professor Tu is referring to Nancy Haigwood, his former graduate school classmate. Dr. Tu seems to be conflating his fondness for his former technician Mara with his emails to Dr. Haigwood — including the 2007 emails of cute kittens and more. (The FBI had encouraged, unsuccessfully, Dr. Haigwood to be in touch and even asked her to have lunch with him, and wear a wire, upon a visit to the area; she declined because she was too nervous).

    I have discussed a couple of his emails to her in Fall 2001, including a September 21, 2001 email that Dillon is suing to obtain under FOIA. (I’ll venture that the FBI is withholding this email that explains how he was spending his time and why he was in the lab those nights and weekends; he was doing small animal experiments). (In fact, Mara, the technician, explained to the FBI that checking the animals on nights and weekends, after being challenged by deadly anthrax, would have been a one-person job and taken a couple of hours. That is exactly what was observed (after, for example, the 52 rabbits arrived to the B3 in the latter part of September; they were challenged on October 1.)

    Then there is a second email, which I recall to have been November 14, by which he sent 7 photos in a group email to 20 or so family and friends. Dr. Haigwood reports that she instantly had a gut feeling about the latter emails which she found peculiar — noting as to the latter that scientists never email photos of themselves.

    I don’t know. I find scientists, like everyone else, often do some peculiar things, including sending photos of themselves in connection with a matter of national importance that was subject to massive publicity. In fact, I don’t even find that email at all peculiar, certainly not in any way does it constitute credible evidence of murder. Most of the photos were of petri dishes.

    I think Dr. Haigwood just didn’t like Ivins — she had ample reason to dislike Ivins given his over the top pranks dating back to grad school and when she lived in Maryland. (Now Ivins might have had a crush on her — or he may have just been a needy guy whose pranks could be very obnoxious).

    Dr. Tu next discusses the imagined code in the letters without noting that the “T” in NEXT was not in fact double-lined — which makes the theory that the divined “FNY” referred to Ivins’ imagined hatred of the Yankees even more a stretch than it was for other reasons.

    Why did FBI Agent Darin Steele think that the “T” in NEXT was double-lined in concocting his interpretation of a code?
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on June 17, 2011
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/06/17/why-did-fbi-agent-darin-steele-think-that-the-t-in-next-was-double-lined-in-concocting-his-interpretation-of-a-code/

    from DXer … what the FBI’s expert says about the DOJ theory of code in the anthrax letters
    [even the author of the book doesn’t credit the theory]
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 8, 2010
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2010/03/08/from-dxer-what-the-fbis-expert-says-about-the-doj-theory-of-code-in-the-anthrax-letters/

    Did the FBI ever think that Ivins threw out the book — which I also have had here since long before 2001 — because the FBI was asking about it? I expect lots of us who had been interrogated a couple dozen times by the FBI might start doing things that avoided the FBI thinking we had done something wrong.

  42. DXer said

    Is Mueller going to indict Kushner and Donald Trump, Jr. WITH the Russian hackers?

    Judge Andrew Napolitano: Mueller’s Russian indictments are only the beginning – Americans could be next

    By Judge Andrew P. Napolitano | Fox News
    http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2018/02/22/judge-andrew-napolitano-mueller-s-russian-indictments-are-only-beginning-americans-could-be-next.html

    “It is a felony for foreign nationals to participate in American federal elections, and it is a felony for any Americans knowingly to assist them.

    This is not the end of these indictments related to the 2016 election. It is the beginning.”

    Comment:

    Should Jared and Ivanka return to New York City now so as to reduce the destabilizing effect of any future indictments?

    Under Article II, Section 2, Clause 1, if Jared is indicted with the Russian hackers, he likely cannot be pardoned by the President.

    The White House so far has missed its opportunity to have Mueller’s resolution in Amerithrax tested on the merits — the White House failed to order the FBI to comply with FOIA and produce the withheld documents.

    As patriotic Americans, their task now is to minimize the instability that the upcoming indictments likely will cause.

    I expect Mueller will not merely indict Mr. Kushner on financial crimes — as that would be simply subject to a pardon by President Trump.

  43. DXer said

    Off-topic:

    Gardner Heist Suspect, Gangster Robert Gentile Could Be Freed Tuesday
    http://www.courant.com/news/connecticut/hc-gardner-gentile-sentence-20180226-story.html

    “The most recent was a week ago.”

    Comment: I think Gentile did have 1 or 2 of the paintings — including the major one — and that he hid it under his garage out back in a upper ware container and it was destroyed in a flood. His son said he never saw his father upset.

    So the FBI would have to find a way for Gentile to admit that without consequence. He otherwise has no reason to talk.

    • DXer said

      Accused mobster linked to Boston art heist faces sentencing
      Reuters Staff
      https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-boston-gardner/accused-mobster-linked-to-boston-art-heist-faces-sentencing-idUSKCN1GB19O

      In a post above, I meant that I think Gentile hid the painting or two in a tupperware container (not upper ware) under the shed out back — and that his son reported to the FBI that he had never seen his father so upset as after a massive flood that destroyed whatever was hidden in the buried tupperware container.

      The FBI searched Gentile’s house again last week.

      We can all wish the FBI and museum well in recovering the paintings — but I suspect the one valued at $300 million was destroyed in that flood. As for the Napoleonic finial, I could pick one up tomorrow that looks as good at a pawn shop or antique flea market. I sent a picture of one to Tony (the museum security director) from Little Falls, where Guarente’s contemporary Earle Berghman had gone. (Working with Elene Guarente, Earle tried to return the paintings in 2004/2005 with Bobby Guarente’s wife and daughter Jeanine using the front of a Boston lawyer Bernie G; given the project was at the initiation of someone in Providence, RI, I found it especially interesting… it was the lawyer Bernie who arranged for Jeanine’s participation.)

      I picked up a free copy of the novel ART FORGER last month in a Little Library and am looking forward to getting to it.

      The museum and FBI appear to dismiss the role of Berghman, the love of Elene Guarente’s life and Guarente’s contemporary in the trade. But I think the two leads are the daughter in Maine, Jeanine. Or Bobby Guarente’s girlfriend in MA who he bought a $250k house. The girlfriend in MA is spurning all requests for assistance.

      The FBI should be running undercovers on both the Maine biological daughter (different mother than Elene) and the MA girlfriend. By the time of his death, Bobby and Elene were no longer close. And so the two other women in his life were the ones who would have been trusted with secrets.

      As for a physical location, my favorite of the day is a white house (not the main house at 957 Lakewood in Madison) up the hill, past the house on the curve with the gnomes and down the road. A cocaine bust was hushed up in 1992 about the time the paintings needed to go in deep storage (when state authorities rejected the offer to return the paintings in exchange for dropping the cocaine distribution charges against Carmello and David Turner)..

      As for 957 Lakewood, Madison property, it is currently listed for $60k. I would recommend it as a good investment but you can see from the realtor photos that there now are huge mounds of dirt piled out in back — that were not there when I visited in 2012 with my trusty sidekick. It was 2012 that I gave Tony (the museum security director) Earle’s name — so Tony, don’t forget me if it turns out to be a fruitful lead.

      There’s a $10 million reward and someone has to pay Dillon’s lawyer for his help.

  44. DXer said

    Declassified – Top Secret/NoForn

    Correcting the Record — The Russia Investigations, dated January 29, 2018
    https://www.scribd.com/document/372309245/Declassified-Democratic-Rebuttal-to-Nunes-Memo#fullscreen&from_embed

    Comment:

    It seems that under Article II, Section 2, Clause 1 of the United States Constitution, President Trump will not be able to pardon Jared Kushner or Donald Trump, Jr. if and when they are indicted in connection with any overt act associated with a conspiracy relating to illegally obtained Clinton emails, because such an indictment would be related to impeachment. Such pardons are excluded from a President’s Powers — at least if it turns out, as Bannan suggests, the President knew of the meeting.

    On the other hand, it seems that the present indictments do not relate to a matter of impeachment. So it seems he could pardon them and avoid leverage being brought to bear on Manafort. Moreover, it is as to these indictment that the “witch hunt” argument most aptly applies.

    But that likely would bring too much political heat and might lead to a vote for impeachment.

    Trump’s shrewder move would be to order the FBI to comply with FOIA regarding Amerithrax — which was Robert Mueller’s biggest “whodunnit.” I’m referring to documents that are appropriately produced under FOIA — that the rule of law should require be disclosed. I’m not referring to classified matters or matters properly exempt under FOIA.

    Nunez’ attempt at distraction with the GOP memo was a bust — and it really is quite ridiculous that he made the claims he did without having read the underlying memo.

    People really do need to read documents before drawing conclusions about them. Politics has no role in true crime or counterintelligence analysis.

    Those pundits and observers drawing conclusions based on the emails selectively quoted by the FBI in its Amerithrax Summary — without taking note of the FBI’s baseless and unjustified failure to produce them — are as off-base as Nunes promotion of the mistleading GOP memo was.

    • DXer said

      Michael Wolff predicts Trump, Kushner would throw each other ‘under the bus’ in Mueller probe

      By Luis Sanchez – 02/24/18 03:40 PM EST
      http://thehill.com/homenews/media/375447-michael-wolff-predicts-trump-kushner-would-throw-each-other-under-the-bus-in

      “Fire and Fury” author Michael Wolff said he believes Jared Kushner — President Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser — will be indicted in special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe, and would likely turn on Trump.

      The author of the best-selling book detailing the inner workings of the Trump White House said at an event in London that the Russia investigation could trigger the biggest crisis the administration will face, all before the midterm elections.

      Wolff said “there is a pretty good possibility at this point that Jared will be indicted,” according to a report by HuffPost.

      “So the more direct question is will Trump throw his son-in-law under the bus, and then the corollary to that is, will his son-in-law throw his father-in-law under the bus?” Wolff said. “And I think the answer to both of those questions is ‘yes.’ ”

      ***

      At the London event, Wolff also described Kushner and Ivanka Trump as “the most entitled people on earth” saying they didn’t have any relevant experience to hold the positions they were given by the president.

      Comment:

      Why would Kushner throw the man who can pardon him under the bus? The loyalty Kushner showed to his own father suggests the course he would follow instead.

      And why would Trump throw Kushner under the bus when he can pardon him? The father’s love for Ivanka would cause him to be highly motivated to stand by Kushner.

      I think Jared and Ivanka should have returned to New York last August but things are where they are. And Mueller and his army of experienced prosecutors are not messing around.

      If the recent past is a guide, maybe Kushner will be indicted first separately for financial crimes. Under Article 2, Trump could pardon him under his “witch hunt” rationale being urged by conservatives.

      Then Kushner and Donald, Jr., if necessary, could simply defend on the merits of the issue of Clinton emails — arguing that it was not unlike the media outlets publishing illegally obtained emails. (Why do they do that? Doesn’t it just encourage that behavior?) If indicted, they could argue that it was analogous to hiring the British intelligence operative to plumb his Russian contacts for intel on Clinton. It would be cast as opposition research — maybe unethical but not illegal.

      I still think, though, that compliance with FOIA may open the public’s eyes to the fact that Robert Mueller may have been mistaken about Amerithrax — and that would be a big boon to the defendants in the Russia investigation.

      Transparency and public insight is the entire purpose of FOIA —and Mueller (and Wray and Comey) would be (I think) the first to support compliance with FOIA.

  45. DXer said

    Some pundits are reading the tea leaves relating to the news report about the Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein’s call to the White House about Jared Kushner’s security clearance. They surmise that Jared Kushner is going to be indicted.

    That poses an interesting situation. Can a US President pardon someone before conviction? For example, as to any financial crimes not related to impeachment? (He cannot pardon as to matter relating to impeachment but the indictments do not seem to relate to impeachment).

    For that matter, can President Trump pardon Gates now? … using his rationale that the Russian investigation has been a “witch hunt”?

    Some pundits are saying that Mueller did not need Gates’ cooperation to obtain a conviction against Manafort — that it thus points to bigger game.

    It seems that the President’s failure to read has undermined his ability to engage in strategic thinking.

    If he had ordered the FBI to comply with FOIA – and better yet, order Amerithrax to be reopened based on the documents properly produced under FOIA – that might have engulfed Mueller in controversy for the Amerithrax investigation.

    But now things seem to be reaching a tipping point with the grand jury voting to indict Mr. Kushner soon.

    Then all hell will break loose.

    Tribe, “To End a Presidency: The Power of Impeachment,” May 2018

  46. DXer said

    Rick Lambert interviewed Ivins at the time that he received Ivin’s permission to copy his computer. In addition to Bruce’s work computer, the FBI had a copy of Bruce’s home computer, taken in March 2005. The FBI has refused to produce any of the requested emails from September and October 2001 — and can be proved to have culled relevant emails from the Army’s production from his work computer (through directions to USAMRMC official John Peterson). John Peterson should be called to testify before a Congressional committee investigation probing the FBI’s failure to produce these emails in Robert Mueller’s Amerithrax investigation. The Committee should also have Richard Lambert appear.

  47. DXer said

    Did I hear that the US has indicted an attorney who failed to produce an email or text? And pretended that he couldn’t find it? Now that’s the pot calling the kettle black.

    Stop the intelligence games over Russia – release the documents!

    Fox News-8 hours ago
    Organizations that have been unable to discover where the money that financed 9/11 came from or who mailed the anthrax letters, that paid no attention to warnings about the Boston Marathon bombers and the other “known wolves” who strike us, that neglected multiple warnings from the wives of Russian …

    http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2018/02/21/stop-intelligence-games-over-russia-release-documents.html

  48. DXer said

    Former CIA director Brennan brings unvarnished views of partisan attacks to Norfolk
    By Bill Bartel
    The Virginian-Pilot
    Feb 18, 2018 Updated 1 hr ago
    https://pilotonline.com/news/government/nation/article_57d7851a-1592-5ba2-9351-13938c6bb0dd.html

  49. DXer said

    Florida Governor Rick Scott’s suggestion that the FBI Director should resign over the recent school shooting strikes me as nonsense.

    If it turns out that the Florida Highway Patrol also had warning, should the Governor resign?

    FBI Director Wray is providing experienced and important leadership to an agency that is not well-served by the turmoil that results from arbitrary and undeserved turnover.
    The country needs such competent and qualified leadership in these perilous times. By all means, get to the bottom of how the ball was dropped.

    FBI Director Wray should only resign, for example, if he were to intentionally withhold documents required to be produced under FOIA relating to the Bureau’s biggest “whodunnit” ever, Amerithrax.

    All of the emails relied upon by the FBI in pitching its “Ivins Theory” have been withheld even though no exemption has been claimed. The request for the emails has been made repeatedly over the course of months and years.

    Only those personally involved in the wrongful withholding — if it continues — should resign.

    It is that sort of approach that leads to accountability.

    But even as to withholding, we should make allowances for how badly the FBI’s data management sucks. For example have you ever tried to use the FBI’s Vault? Their internal indexes likely aren’t much better.

    There is a documentary film-maker who asked me lats week to try to find a document that the blog’s undercover graphic artist had cited and it took us a very long time because of the unavailability of full-text boolean searching.

    In connection to that film project, will a filmed interview of Dr. Ivins son serve to debunk an Ivins Theory and the FBI’s specious claim that Bruce was able to pull two all-nighters, unnoticed, in a small house with 3 adults?

    There is a big difference between late night drives (within the range that you are known to work late) and getting back at dawn — shortly before having to report to work.

    • DXer said

      Pressure mounts on FBI director to resign as Florida community reels

      • Pressure is mounting on the FBI director to resign after his agency admitted it failed to investigate a warning that the man accused of killing 17 people at a Florida high school possessed a gun and the desire to kill.
      • The disclosure spread angry disbelief among residents of the Miami suburb of Parkland where Wednesday’s massacre unfolded.
      • Florida’s governor Rick Scott has called for FBI chief Christopher Wray to resign.
      Published 6 Hours Ago

      https://www.cnbc.com/2018/02/17/fbi-director-under-pressure-to-resign-after-florida-school-shooting.html

      “Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel told a news conference his office had received about 20 “calls for service” in the last few years regarding Cruz and would scrutinize all of them to see if they were handled properly.”

    • DXer said

      Florida investigated accused school shooter after he cut himself on video…

      Updated 1:34 PM; Posted 1:28 PM
      http://www.syracuse.com/us-news/index.ssf/2018/02/florida_had_investigated_accused_school_shooter_after_he_cut_himself_on_video.html#incart_river_home

      PARKLAND, Fla. (AP) — Florida’s child welfare agency investigated the suspect in a school shooting that killed 17 people after he cut himself in a video

      Mr. Cruz was on Snapchat cutting both of his arms,” the Florida DCF abuse hotline was told in August 2016. “Mr. Cruz has fresh cuts on both his arms. Mr. Cruz stated he plans to go out and buy a gun.”

      Comment: Under the Governor’s logic, he should resign because the State of Florida was on notice.

      FBI Director Wray is distinguished by his professionalism as were both the Directors Mueller and Comey before him. We need more men and women like that in our federal government.

      At the very least, even from the point of view of their critics, they all instill morale in a vitally important agency that more often than not has been distinguished by its good faith and abidance by the rule of law. Critics are perhaps as loud as they/we are because of the very high bar we set for them and the importance of the challenges they face.

    • DXer said

      Governor Rick Scott suggestion that FBI Director Wray resign is totally unfounded. Governor Scott is the one who has failed to do what was necessary.

      https://www.orlandoweekly.com/Blogs/archives/2018/02/16/a-brief-history-of-gov-rick-scott-doing-jack-shit-about-florida-gun-violence

      2011: Rick Scott signed a controversial “docs versus glocks” bills, which punished doctors who asked patients about gun ownership. Pediatricians feared the safety repercussions of the legislation.

      2012: A Federal judge barred enforcement of the docs v. glocks law, saying it was based on anecdotal information and unfounded conjecture.

      2012: Rick Scott cut the cost of a concealed weapons permit.

      2013: Rick Scott said he would not be proposing any changes to state gun laws during the year, despite the Sandy Hook massacre just weeks earlier.

      2013: Rick Scott opposed universal background checks for gun purchases: “It’s always easy to say do something when no one understands what it is.”

      2014: Rick Scott signed House Bill 89, which intended to allow people to use threatened force, such as a warning shot, as part of the stand your ground defense.

      2014: Rick Scott signed legislation allowing children to play with simulated weapons in school.

      2015: Rick Scott signed Senate Bill 290, which allowed Floridians to carry a concealed weapon for 48 hours during a mandatory evacuation without a license.

      2016: Rick Scott cut the cost of a concealed weapons permit — for a second time in his Administration.

      2016: Rick Scott refused to talk about gun measures in the aftermath of the Pulse shooting: “There will be plenty of time to deal with how our society comes together.”

      2016: Rick Scott refused to talk about gun measures in the aftermath of the Fort Meyers club shooting: “The Second Amendment Has Never Shot Anybody”

      2017: 11th Circuit Court Of Appeals struck down the docs v. glocks law.

      2017: Miami Judge ruled that the new changes to the Stand Your Ground Law were unconstitutional.

      2017: Rick Scott refused to talk about gun measures in the aftermath of the Fort Lauderdale Airport shooting: “It’s not a time to be political” [Transcript – Rick Scott Press Conference, 1/6/17]

      2017: Rick Scott cut the cost of a concealed weapons permit — for a third time in his Administration.

    • DXer said

      What did Nikolas Cruz write Trump and what did the Trump White House write in response? (You may remember the photo of him in his MAGA hat).

      Nikolas Cruz espoused racism in chats, bragged of contacting …
      Washington Times-14 hours ago
      Confessed school shooter Nikolas Cruz repeatedly ranted against minorities and once bragged of writing to President Trump, according to private Instagram messages obtained following Wednesday’s … He also, at one point, claimed to have written Mr. Trump and received a response, CNN reported.

    • DXer said

      “Case closed,'” Trump cited in one tweet.

      https://www.cnn.com/2018/02/17/politics/white-house-responds-mueller/index.html

      Comment:

      Come on, Mr. President. The blog appreciates your advertisement of the blog but you can do better than that.

      Order FBI Director Wray to have David Hardy comply with FOIA in connection with Amerithrax, the biggest whodunnit in history. I venture you may find that FBI Director Mueller did in fact botch it just as critics allege. I venture you will find that it is true as the former lead Amerithrax investigator claims, that the FBI is withholding a staggering amount of information exculpatory of the late USAMRIID scientist, Bruce Ivins, who the FBI accused of being the mailer.

      Encourage FBI Director Wray to produce under FOIA the emails quoted and relied upon by the FBI and the factual parts (versus deliberative parts) of the Interim Case Management Summary. The attached forensic and factual exhibits also.

      I was a drinking buddy of William Kacyzycki who tore down Bonwit Teller for you (to make way for the Trump Tower) using a building full of illegal immigrants (there were so many that they were housed in a separate building Bill owned).

      As you know, there wasn’t enough money to pay the workers because of what the mob was being paid.

      So I’ve been awfully restrained in challenging your ethics and producing the documents. (Bill, who has passed, blamed you — he went to jail while you bought your way out of trouble, he says).

      But we already know you are the man you seem to be. So there is an integrity in that at least. (You have always set a pretty low bar for yourself).

      But let’s now put FBI Director Mueller to the test and see whether his resolution of Amerithrax was a principled one. (He sets a very high bar for himself).

      My suggestion is that the key emails to and from Bruce Ivins to his assistants are being withheld because they allow an FBI Ivins Theory to be further debunked, for example, by revealing that he was in the lab those nights and weekends working on small animal experiments. The FBI even shredded their civil depositions (really! no joke.)

  50. DXer said

    http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2018/02/when_federal_prosecutors_go_bad.html

    “When Federal Prosecutors Go Bad

    American Thinker-7 hours ago

    Except from the convervative publication, American Thinker:

    “Mueller has an uneven, sometimes incompetent record — for example his Anthrax Letters investigation …

    Ms. Powell quotes The Center for Prosecutor Integrity list of misconduct that can terrorize targets of government prosecution, even if they are innocent:


    Withholding or delaying the release of exculpatory evidence.”

    Comment: Now, the former lead Amerithrax investigator, someone who tells me that he holds Mueller in high regard, says that a staggering amount of information potentially exculpatory of the late Bruce Ivins is being withheld by the FBI.

    Researcher Dillon and I have pointed out that the FBI is withholding from production under FOIA all of the emails that they quote and rely upon in the Amerithrax Summary and the sworn affidavit in support of the Ivins residence. The FBI is withholding the emails, we submit, because they run contrary to the particulars of the Ivins Theory spun by the FBI.

    Remember, they spun similar silk purses out of a sow’s ear in numerous other affidavits involving searches of Hatfill’s residence, Berry’s residence and more, including secret searches conducted under FISA. But, here, where what they are withholding and concealing relates to why Ivins was in the B3 those nights and weekends in September and October 2001, the withholding is both in violation of FOIA and MORALLY WRONG. IT IS REALLY WRONG.

    If the withholding continues, the FBI employees responsible for the continued withholding should be identified and sanctioned.

  51. DXer said

    It is important that the underlying emails quoted and relied upon in the Amerithrax Summary and Dellefera Affidavit (in support of Ivins’ residence) be released

    “This may reflect a general approach that the FBI takes when they get … warrants, disclosing only what they want to disclose and not telling the court about information that might lead them to reach a different conclusion,” Dershowitz said on “Sunday Morning Futures.”

    For example, the FBI’s Theory was that Ivins had no reason to be in the lab and yet, on information and belief, Bruce Ivins told Mara Linscott about his having to work on the small animal experiments on nights and weekends during the September and early October 2001. In the Amerithrax Summary, the FBI does not even mention his experiment involving the 52 rabbits and the challenge at the start of October and the ensuing deaths requiring his attention.

    Dershowitz: Every American Has a Stake in Making Sure the FBI Remains Accountable
    http://insider.foxnews.com/2018/02/04/alan-dershowitz-every-american-has-stake-making-sure-fbi-remains-accountable

    Legal expert Alan Dershowitz warned that the government surveillance abuses alleged in the controversial Republican FISA memo could be a “systemic problem.”

    The memo asserts that a high-ranking law enforcement official stated in closed-door testimony that without the anti-Trump dossier, the FBI would not have been able to secure surveillance warrants on at least one member of the Trump campaign.

    It also alleges the FBI and Justice Department, in their application to the FISA court, used media reporting to lend credibility to the dossier, which they failed to disclose was a political opposition document funded by the Hillary Clinton campaign and the Democratic National Committee.

    “This may reflect a general approach that the FBI takes when they get FISA warrants, disclosing only what they want to disclose and not telling the court about information that might lead them to reach a different conclusion,” Dershowitz said on “Sunday Morning Futures.”

    .@AlanDersh: The Nunes FISA memo deserves more investigation. Time for a nonpartisan commission https://t.co/PqKPq9QB9H

    — Fox News (@FoxNews) February 2, 2018

    He said it’s important that the memo’s underlying documents — such as the FISA application for surveillance on Trump associate Carter Page — are released, in order to determine if abuses in fact occurred.

    He said he’s calling for a nonpartisan commission to investigate, to serve the public interest in the integrity of our law enforcement agencies.

    “Every American – liberal, conservative, Democrat, Republican – has a stake in making sure that the FBI remains accountable and follows the law and follows the Constitution,” Dershowitz said.

  52. DXer said

    The FBI’s failure to produce any of the emails that it has quoted and relied upon in its Amerithrax Summary and affidavit in support of Ivins’ residence shows that Dillon is on to something.

    Compare
    Devin Nunes tried to discredit the FBI. Instead, he proved it’s onto something.
    By Asha Rangappa February 4 at 10:26 AM Follow @AshaRangappa_
    Asha Rangappa is a senior lecturer at the Jackson Institute for Global Affairs at Yale University and a former FBI agent.
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/posteverything/wp/2018/02/04/devin-nunes-tried-to-discredit-the-fbi-instead-he-proved-its-onto-something/?utm_term=.ef64607e2394

  53. DXer said

    Even though the Joint Status Report stated that “the FBI intends to release the responsive and releasable information on today, January 30, 2018”, FBI’s letter to Kenneth Dillon denied the Interim Major Case Summary information in full and did not mention or produce any of the emails Mr. Dillon had requested that are still being withheld.

    Mr. Dillon’s position is that the invoked exemptions for the IMCS do not apply to the withheld information and that the search for emails was not adequate. He should request a Vaughn Index for both the requested IMCS material and the requested September-October, 2001 emails between Bruce Ivins and his assistants and others.

    For example, three unreleased emails from Bruce Ivins to his assistant Mara Linscott are known:

    –Sept 15, 2001– Linscott (Dellaferra Affidavit in support of search of Ivins residence)
    –Sept 26, 2001— Linscott (Dellaferra Affidavit)
    –October 3, 2001— Linscott (Amerithrax Investigative Summary)

    These emails are shortly before the first dates of mailings of anthrax — when the FBI claims that Ivins had no reason to be in the lab. The emails are direct evidence of what he was doing.

    Examples of additional Ivins emails that should have been released in response to Mr. Dillon’s 2015 FOIA request include:

    –September 6, 2001–Rick Sams (David Willman, The Mirage Man, p. 376, n. 6)
    –September 21, 2001–Nancy Haigwood (Willman, p. 131)

    The FBI should release these emails and to identify all the numerous emails still being withheld, to include a second email to Nancy Haigwood (and numerous other recipients).

    On information and belief, emails were reviewed upon production by the Army and a large group of DOJ and FBI officials directed that they be removed in instructions to John Peterson of the USAMRMC, the originating agency. The removal at the time was done (and permissible) when Amerithrax was still open but the emails should have been restored once the case was closed. Importantly, the emails relate to Ivins’ alibi — where he was and what he was doing.

    Relying on FBI’s statement that it had conducted a search and had found no responsive records, Mr. Dillon narrowed his request in his letter of December 22, 2016. But he was misled. Given the numerous known, unreleased emails, it is reasonable to think that FBI has more unreleased Ivins emails from September-October, 2001; Ivins was a prolific writer of emails. The FBI has not released any of the numerous emails that it quotes in its Amerithrax Summary and relies upon.

    Former head of the Amerithrax investigation Richard Lambert has stated that there is “a wealth of exculpatory evidence” regarding Bruce Ivins. Thus it is reasonable to think that FBI’s search in response to Dillon’s 2015 request and appeal for a full range of documents related to Ivins from September-October, 2001 was also inadequate.

  54. DXer said

    Now consider the Hardy claim that the documents relating to Ivins have been in connection with this request for docs relating to Ivins. The request and denial was made not just by Dillon — but by muckrock.

    https://www.muckrock.com/foi/united-states-of-america-10/bruce-edwards-ivins-33154/

    https://www.muckrock.com/foi/united-states-of-america-10/bruce-edwards-ivins-33154/#file-136717

    In that case, the general response to the general request is understandable.

    But in the case of Dillon’s request, the incorrectness of Hardy’s claim was exposed when attention turned to the emails by Ivins that were quoted and relied upon by the FBI in its Amerithrax Summary. He sharpened it even further to focus on the Sept and Oct 2001 period and the emails from Bruce Ivins to Mara Linscott and Pat Fellows.
    They were the ones who made the virulent Ames anthrax that is missing.

    James Comey (see his tweet): who is the liar and weasel when the FBI FOIA head is saying that Bruce Ivins’ September and October 2001 emails have been uploaded to the Vault — when they haven’t? And Dave Hardy KNOWS that they haven’t.

    The FBI’s weaseling is done under the protection of boilerplate — and the FBI employees comfort themselves by pointing to the volume of requests and associated lies in response. Hardy, as I recall, supervises 65 employees. And so the guilty knowledge that the emails have not in fact been produced is diffused — and accountability lost.
    Tell 100s of lies, and hey, Dave will tell you that is just because Congress has not funded his agency sufficiently. The problem with that argument is that the withheld Linscott and Fellows emails being withheld are readily available to Hardy and the other FBI employees (e.g., Matthew Hurd) who have told the same lie.

    When you add uninformed litigation counsel to the mix and you get meaningless statements like the one in the January 30, 2018 joint status report — asserting that there was going to be a production of requested documents. A true statement to the federal court judge by the DOJ counsel would have been: the FBI refuses to give the plaintiff anything today, thank you very much.

    In the FBI’s Ivins Theory, AUSA Lieber and the FBI investigators spun silk purse out of a sow’s ear.

    Production of the relevant documents (such as hours data from 1412 rather than just 1425) would reveal the FBI’s spin in its Amerithrax Summary to be a crock.

    The Linscott and Fellows emails from Ivins were NOT produced. And failure to produce them constitutes weaseling of the highest order. Dave Hardy knows that. AUSA Lieber knows that.

    So does James Comey.

  55. DXer said

    FOIA Atty Loses DC Circ. Bid For More Info On FBI Probe

    By Emma Cueto

    Law360 (February 1, 2018, 9:03 PM EST) — The D.C. Court of Appeals declined on Wednesday to revive an attorney’s Freedom of Information Act suit against the FBI, upholding a lower court ruling that the bureau had complied with his request for information about its investigation into classified intelligence he received in two underlying suits.

    The panel ruled that the FBI had not used the wrong search terms, dates or records system when processing a FOIA request by Kel McClanahan, the director of the nonprofit public interest firm National Security Counselors. McClanahan claimed in his…

    Comment: Why did the FBI fail to provide the Mara Linscott and Pat Fellows emails on the schedule (January 30, 2018) contemplated by the parties in their Status Report to the US federal court judge in the pending FOIA litigation?

    The FBI expressly quotes and relies on them in the FBI Amerithrax Summary. The emails from September and October 2001, in particular, reveal what Ivins was doing at the time Ivins — according to the FBI’s speculative and widely debunked theory — was growing and drying a powderized anthrax.

    As another example, why did the FBI fail to provide the September 21, 2001 email to Nancy Haigwood (who was merely one among many named in the group email by Ivins).

    Why did the FBI fail to provide the early September email to his childhood friend Rick Sams?

    It is not because they are classified. Or is it?

    It is not because the case is open. Or is it?

    Ken Dillon’s previous attorney, as I recall, was Kel McClanahan who suffered the setback in the case described in yesterday’s news in the excerpted article above.

    His present attorney, Scott Hodes, should get answer to these questions in the form of a Vaughn Index of the emails being withheld.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    • DXer said

      FBI Drops Law Enforcement as ‘Primary’ Mission
      Foreign Policy (blog)-Jan 5, 2014

      …asked Kel McClanahan, a Washington-based national security lawyer. McClanahan noticed the change last month while reviewing a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request from the agency. The FBI fact sheet accompanies every FOIA response and highlights a variety of facts about the agency.

      Comment:

      Senator Leahy has angrily said that Amerithrax is not in fact closed. He has said that when an agency makes a mistake, they merely mark it classified.

      From that point of view, Is the FBI’s primary mission “CYA” ? The Army has produced thousands of Ivins emails — how can the FBI justify withholding the very emails that it relies upon and quotes in support of its Ivins Theory?

      Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
      http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  56. DXer said

    The Joint Status Report dated January 30, 2018 states in pertinent part:

    “Undersigned counsel has been informed that the appropriate agencies have processed the
    materials responsive to this case. The FBI intends to release the responsive and releasable
    information on today, January 30, 2018. The Plaintiff will require three weeks to receive and to
    review the release. The parties then request two weeks to determine whether further litigation is
    necessary and if so the briefing schedule the parties propose.”

  57. DXer said

    http://www.breitbart.com/radio/2018/01/28/rep-gohmert-mueller-never-should-have-accepted-lead-special-counsel-investigation/

    Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) joined SiriusXM hosts Matthew Boyle and Amanda House and launched a scathing attack on former FBI head and now Special Counsel Robert Mueller on this week’s edition of Breitbart News Sunday.

    “I’ve been complaining since the day he was appointed, he did so much damage to the FBI,” Gohmert said of Mueller, offering up multiple criticisms of his long FBI career, from his alleged mishandling of the Boston bombing in 2013 to the now-infamous anthrax investigations over a decade earlier.

    “This guy has done so much damage to our country, to the greatest law enforcement force for good in history, the FBI … he did a lot of damage. It’s time to stop the damage that he’s doing right now,” added Gohmert.

    He also faulted Mueller for his handling of the 2001 anthrax investigation.

    “This guy’s done so much damage, he should never have been appointed, and if he had had any decency about him at all, he would have immediately declined because he couldn’t investigate anything Comey is involved in,” he said, suggesting Mueller and former FBI Director James Comey are basically “joined at the hip.”

    Comment:

    But what has Rep. Louie Gohmert done to shed light on the 2001 anthrax investigation? People are either part of the solution or part of the problem. I’ve only seen former Rep. Rush Holt press for greater transparency so that we can better assess the Amerithrax investigation. All that is needed is a letter from the Congressman to FBI FOIA head Dave Hardy that asks that he prioritize the pending requests and that he comply with FOIPA. (He has always refused to expedite the requests, which have languished for years — with his false denials beating down requestors into abandoning or narrowing their requests. (Hardy has always denied requests requesting expedition on the grounds that there is no public interest — and yet the New York Times requested these emails and Notebook 4010 many years ago.)

    Trentonian (10/20/13) … Congressman Rush Holt: “Myriad questions remain about the anthrax attacks and the government’s response to the attacks.
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on October 21, 2013
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2013/10/21/trentonian-102013-congressman-rush-holt-myriad-questions-remain-about-the-anthrax-attacks-and-the-governments-response-to-the-attacks/

    Congressman Rush Holt: The FBI repeatedly bungled the anthrax investigation … I have introduced legislation that would create a special committee to investigate the anthrax attacks
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on September 18, 2011
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/09/18/congressman-rush-holt-the-fbi-repeatedly-bungled-the-anthrax-investigation-without-any-direct-physical-evidence-tying-dr-bruce-ivins-to-the-attack-the-fbi-declared-in-august-2008-that-iv/

    Rush Holt, upon leaving Congress, is becoming the chief executive officer of American Association for the Advancement of Science … perhaps he will continue his quest to determine the truth about the 2001 anthrax attacks
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on December 24, 2014
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2014/12/24/rush-holt-upon-leaving-congress-is-becoming-the-chief-executive-officer-of-american-association-for-the-advancement-of-science-perhaps-he-will-continue-his-quest-to-determine-the-truth-about-t/

  58. DXer said

    There is an article on the Amerithrax statistics in Electrophoresis.FN/

    The problem with any focus on the statistics relating to morphs, as an aid in solving the Amerithrax whodunnit, is that it assumes that the collection of samples is complete — when there is zero reason it would be.

    Even a smidgeon can be used to grow additional genetically identical stock — and the one thing we know is the attack anthrax was NOT taken directly from Flask 1029. Several hundred had access to the genetically matching virulent Ames, and that was just at USAMRIID.

    Transparency and disclosure of the documents being withheld by the FBI is far important to assessing the FBI’s conclusions.

    * FBI genetics expert Claire Fraser-Liggett … I think that the (FBI’s use of the) evidence on science probably was misleading … I have no way to know whether or not Bruce Ivins was really the perpetrator
    Posted on October 13, 2011
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/10/13/fbi-genetics-expert-claire-fraser-liggett-this-is-not-an-airtight-case-by-any-means/

    * Dr. Patricia Worsham, a leading anthrax and [FBI’s] genetics expert who testified before the NAS, was not persuaded by the FBI’s argument on the issue of “morphs” and sample submissions
    Posted on January 14, 2014
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2014/01/14/dr-patricia-worsham-a-leading-anthrax-and-genetics-expert-who-testified-before-the-nas-was-not-persuaded-by-the-fbis-argument-on-the-issue-of-morphs-and-sample-submissions/

    * April 26, 2012 FBI Quantico Publication: The Detection of Meglumine and Diatrizoate In No Way Pointed To Bruce Ivins As The Perpetrator Or Involved At All; Meglumine and Diatrizoate were both detected in the USAMRIID RMR 1029 sample — but Meglumine and Diatrizoate were NOT detected in the 2001 letter spore evidence
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on May 9, 2012
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2012/05/09/april-2012-fbi-quantico-publication-the-detection-of-meglumine-and-diatrizoate-in-the-mailed-anthrax-in-no-way-pointed-to-bruce-ivins-as-the-perpetrator-or-involved-at-all-meglumine-and-diatrizo/

    FN/
    Electrophoresis. 2018 Jan;39(2):386-393. doi: 10.1002/elps.201600287.
    Statistical interpretation of the Amerithrax “morph” assay results.

    Velsko SP1, Osburn JJ1, Sharma SK2, Ashley JD2.
    Author information

    Abstract

    In the Amerithrax investigation PCR-based “morph assays” were used to link the anthrax letters with the RMR-1029 flask at USAMRIID. Quantitative data reported for several of these assays are not consistent with Poisson sampling statistics, but instead exhibit “Taylor’s Law” behavior where the variance greatly exceeds the mean. A plausible statistical model for this behavior can explain the large number of observed negative and “inconclusive” findings, and implies a high likelihood that a repository sample could contain a “morph” mutant at concentrations well above the nominal detection limit but nonetheless give a negative or inconclusive test result. A Bayesian framework relates the assay results to the probability that a sample actually contains all four morph mutants, even though it tested negative for at least one. The analysis implies that the observed false negative rate actually does not significantly weaken the conclusion that the morph assays correctly excluded all but the stocks derived from RMR-1029 as possible sources of the letter powders, at least when the test results were unambiguous. These findings expand upon and resolve some of the issues cited in recent reviews, and indicate the importance of developing a rigorous statistical framework for interpreting “morph” assay data.

    KEYWORDS:

    Amerithrax; Anthrax letters; Morphotype; RMR-1029; Taylor’s Law

    1
    Global Security, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA, USA.
    2
    Applied Research and Methods, United States Government Accountability Office, Washington, DC, USA.

    • DXer said

      The authors explain:

      “Five separate PCR-based assays were developed to detect the presence of spores with one of four selected “morph” mutations within the population of spores contained in each isolate from the set of laboratories that contributed samples to the repository. … When these assays were applied to the repository samples, only those samples that were directly derived from a particular stock of spores maintained at USAMRIID tested positive for all four morph variants (A1, A2, D, and E). From this, the FBI concluded that the stock in question, known as RMR-1029, could be not be excluded as the ultimate source of the spores found in the letters. In the investigative summary released by the Department of Justice in 2010, this conclusion was expressed in stronger terms, declaring that RMR-1029 was the “parent material” for the anthrax letters, and the RMR-1029 was the “source of the murder weapon”. The stronger inference relies on two assumptions: first that the repository is an accurate and complete representation of all Ames-strain holdings, and secondly, an unstated assumption that all stocks that tested negative for at least one of the morphs could be excluded as sources.”

    • DXer said

      Background:

      NAS: Scientific data could not rule out other sources
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on February 15, 2011
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/02/15/nas-scientific-data-could-not-rule-out-other-sources/

      NAS Panel Member Nancy D. Connell in new treatise: Amerithrax May Never Be Solved
      Posted on August 20, 2012
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2012/08/20/nas-panel-member-nancy-d-connell-in-new-treatise-amerithrax-may-never-be-solved/

      In Have We “Met the Enemy”?, Science 3 February 2012: Vol. 335 no. 6068 pp. 540-541, Dr. David Relman, who had been vice-chairman of the NAS Committee, explains:
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 5, 2012
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2012/03/05/in-have-we-met-the-enemy-science-3-february-2012-vol-335-no-6068-pp-540-541-dr-david-relman-who-had-been-vice-chairman-of-the-nas-committee-explains/

      an interview with David Relman, vice chair of the NAS review committee, reveals clearly that the science cannot prove that Dr. Bruce Ivins is the sole perpetrator or even involved … and, by the way, it seems Al Qaeda had Ames anthrax
      Posted on February 25, 2011
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/02/25/an-interview-with-david-relman-vice-chair-of-the-nas-review-committee-reveals-clearly-how-that-the-fbi-botched-the-scientific-investigation-of-the-2001-anthrax-attacks-and-that-the-science-cannot/

    • DXer said

      “The science behind the “morph assays” and the validity
      of the inferences drawn from them were scrutinized in
      two major reviews, one by the National Academies of Science
      (NAS) in 2009–2011[3], and one by the Government Accountability
      Office (GAO), which was completed in 2014 [4]. The
      NAS review pointed out that there were grounds for uncertainty
      in the assumptions that the repository was complete
      and representative. In addition, the NAS report pointed out
      the possibility that a morph that was present at a concentration
      below the detection limit of its assay might be amplified
      to detectable levels under culture conditions similar to those
      used to grow the material used in the letters. The NAS report
      suggested that experimentation was needed to evaluate how
      patterns ofmorph presence and absence might change when
      daughter samples were prepared from parent isolates under
      various culture conditions.”

    • DXer said

      “Both reviews questioned the degree of assurance that the
      repository samples were a complete collection of stocks that
      existed prior to the Amerithrax incident, and that each sample
      in the repository was representative of the original stock it was
      derived from, in the sense that the presence or absence of each
      of the four signature mutants has not been altered. The Investigative
      Summary listed several reasons why investigators
      felt confident that the repository was complete, including interviews
      with scientists who were knowledgeable about their
      lab’s Ames stocks, and through search warrants at specific
      laboratories [2]. The NAS report expressed skepticism about
      the degree of assurance these reasons offer [3]. Regardless,
      the degree of confidence associated with completeness does
      not lend itself to quantitative expression, except as a purely
      subjective probability estimate.”

      Note: What assurances were there with respect to the decontamination efficacy study for which the lab technician’s assistants could not be found?

      What was there beyond the acknowledgement that virulent Ames had been supplied by Bruce Ivins in the patents that R. Scott Decker read?

      Aren’t we left with only Scott’s biases, gut instinct (that he had when he first met and didn’t like Ivins), his assumptions and his inability to locate the Ames stocks made by the technicians?

      Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
      http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

    • DXer said

      “Another source of uncertainty – whether a stock whose
      repository representative tested negative for at least one of
      the morphs could be excluded as a possible source – also received
      considerable attention in both reviews. The NAS report
      focused on the imprecision in the instructions given to laboratories
      who prepared samples of their stocks for the repository.
      Certain variations in the preparation procedure could
      plausibly alter the concentration of one or more morphs. Because
      the steps each laboratory took are not verifiable, this
      uncertainty too is subjective and not statistically quantifiable.
      This would remain true even if the experiments to elucidate
      how sample preparation conditions can alter the presence or
      absence of each mutant that were recommended in the NAS
      report were performed.”

    • DXer said

      From conclusion:

      “Understanding the probability that a stock containing
      all four morphs exists among the repository samples that
      tested ambiguously in one way or another seems unapproachable
      at this time, perhaps requiring new testing using much
      more carefully characterized assays. Moreover, our analysis
      says nothing about the additional uncertainties introduced by
      repository completeness and representativeness.”

    • DXer said

      “The calculations presented above illustrate a fundamental
      problem with setting an arbitrary criterion for a “limit of
      detection” in PCR assays and reporting results as “positive”,
      “negative”, or “inconclusive”. While they were quick to recognize
      the potential importance of the morph assays, the FBI
      appeared to adopt a somewhat simplistic picture of how those
      assay results should be interpreted [2]. A negative assay result
      was effectively taken to mean that the morph was absent, and
      therefore could not generate a spore powder containing that
      morph. The stochastic nature of PCR, and the quantitation
      of variance was not taken into account. Our analysis of the
      quantitative PCR data accumulated during the development
      and validation of the morph assays revealed a possibility that
      the variance of repeat measurements might far exceed expectations
      based on Poisson statistics. Thus, samples with
      concentrations similar to RMR-1029 can exhibit high rates
      of false negative or inconclusive detections. Clearly, characterizing
      this property of the assays more carefully during the
      validation phase of development would have made it possible
      to draw more rigorous conclusions—with measures
      of confidence—regarding the test results for the repository
      samples.”

    • DXer said

      “This work was performed under the auspices of the U.S. Department
      of Energy by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
      under Contract DE-AC52-07NA27344.

      The authors have declared no conflict of interest.”

  59. DXer said

    Why would the FBI concoct a theory that involved Ivins growing anthrax in September 2001 when a simpler theory was that a lot of Ames grown by his assistants and 340 mls. of Ames shipped to USAMRIID in June 2001 — which can be presumed to be genetically identical (given its seed stock)— was missing?

    The reason is that if it was missing, although Ivins the FBI’s long-time consultant in DSD would have legal liability of any unauthorized transfer, all flavors of theory would then still be viable.

    For example, did Hatfill take it (it was in 1412 also, notwithstanding the FBI’s bogus factual claims)? Did an Al Qaeda operative have access? Was it given to DARPA for biodefense research without compliance with the regulations that went into effect in late 1997? Did a Battelle operated lab use it to promote a financial angle? Was it a secret and illegal CIA operation? Did some former disgruntled employee take it? We just don’t know because the FBI is continuing to play hide the ball — to further the careers of the individual FBI and DOJ employees.

    By concocting a theory that the Ames was grown those nights and weekends he was checking on the animals, the FBI spun a theory that pointed only to Ivins. The mistake in the hours analysis pitched by Darin Steele to AUSA Lieber was due to his failure to appreciate that challenges had shifted from Building 1412 to Building 1425, and from aerosol to injection. Notice that the FBI nowhere provides the hours distribution from Building 1412 where the Ames research previously had been done in aerosol challenges. (See Andrews’s discussion and Ivins emails). To help make the hours analysis fly, it was necessary for the FBI to withhold the 2000 email where Ivins explained that the burden of the long odd hours on nights and weekends fell on him alone.

    Senator Leahy has angrily said that he doesn’t believe for a minute the FBI’s Ivins Theory. And he received private briefings by FBI Director Mueller. (Mueller never thanked the investigators.) At a public hearing, Leahy angrily said that the investigation is not closed.

    The shredding of the Linscott and Fellows civil depositions was part of having the struggling Ivins Theory attempt to fly.

    The sensational aspects of Ivins’ paranoid thinking, depressional and suicidal thought dating back to 1999 gave the investigators the opportunity to substitute a psychiatric theory — in the face of a total lack of forensic evidence.

    -The FBI found it necessary to withold the family’s 302 interviews establishing Ivins’ alibi.

    -The FBI found it necessary to withhold 58 pages of the laboratory Notebook 4010 relating to the so-called “murder weapon.”

    -The FBI found it necessary to withhold each and everyone one of the Linscott and Fellows (and other) emails that it quoted and relied upon in pitching its controversial Ivins Theory.

    Maybe Ivins WAS guilty. But because of the total absence of evidence provided to date, we just don’t know.

    -The FBI’s handwriting expert, in an opinion never produced under FOIA, has concluded that Ivins did not probably write the letters. (FWIW)

    -The FBI’s polygraph expert, in an opinion never produced under FOIA, concluded that Ivins likely was telling the truth. (FWIW)

    -There were no copy tracks or ink toner identification that supported an Ivins Theory.

    -The postage stamp evidence didn’t point to Ivins any more than it did to any of the millions of people in states like Maryland and Virginia.

    -The isotope ratio science relating to the water used did not point to Ivins.

    -Examination of tape and pen ink used did not support an Ivins Theory.

    -No fiber analysis supported an Ivins Theory.

    -No bloodhound evidence — although it was a hyped crock and the FBI scientists should be embarrassed — supported an Ivins Theory.

    The FBI’s Theory was just based on his mental fragility — a man who was paranoid that his two workers didn’t really like him. It is analogous to a theory that a 17-year old committed rape of an elderly woman even though the victim said that the attacker was clean-shaven and the 17-year-old had a beard.

    If the FBI had not withheld his contemporaneous documents from him, perhaps Ivins would have been able to better reconstruct his time and he would not have felt the betrayal and sadness that led to his suicide.

  60. DXer said

    Man imprisoned for decades sues police, FBI after release

    Sentinel & Enterprise
    Updated: 01/27/2018 06:31:47 AM EST

    By Alana Durkin Richer

    The Associated Press

    BOSTON — A Massachusetts man who spent more than three decades in prison for a rape he says he didn’t commit has filed a federal lawsuit accusing law enforcement officials of conspiring to frame him by planting phony evidence and coercing false statements that were used against him.

    George Perrot was 17 in 1985 when he was arrested and charged with raping a 78-year-old Mary Prekop in Springfield, Massachusetts. Perrot, whose conviction was based in part on a single strand of hair, was released from prison in 2016 after a judge said he’s “reasonably sure” Perrot is innocent and found an FBI agent’s testimony about microscopic hair evidence to be flawed.

    Perrot’s attorneys say in the lawsuit filed Thursday that law enforcement officers beat and threatened to kill Perrot after his arrest, planted gloves and the hair at the crime scene and withheld evidence that could have helped him. His attorneys allege that officials knew the hair analysis used to secure Perrot’s conviction was “junk science” but pressed forward anyway.

    “Rather than do the work necessary to identify the perpetrator, the defendants, individually and jointly, short-circuited the investigatory process and wrongfully targeted plaintiff in an effort to simply close the case,” his attorneys say in the lawsuit against Springfield, several city police officers, a prosecutor and FBI agents.

    ***

    The U.S. Justice Department flagged Perrot’s case in 2014 as one of hundreds that involved erroneous statements from FBI agents about hair analysis. The FBI now acknowledges the science is not conclusive and uses it only in conjunction with DNA testing.

    Prosecutors dismissed charges against Perrot in October, saying “the interests and administration of justice are best served by the termination of prosecution of this matter.”

    Prekop repeatedly said the man who beat and raped her didn’t have any facial hair. On the night of the attack, Nov. 30, 1985, Perrot had a beard and a mustache. When Prekop was shown Perrot’s lineup photo during his trial and was asked if he was her attacker, she replied, “How can I say it when this man has a mustache and a beard?”

    Read more: http://www.sentinelandenterprise.com/news/ci_31624426/man-imprisoned-decades-sues-police-fbi-after-release#ixzz55OHem0g6

    Comment: The FBI has done the same thing in Amerithrax. As a single example, even after it was found that Ames thought to have been inactivated was not, the former FBI Amerithrax officials (Hassell and Majidi who now had senior positions in the DOD) truncated analysis to only look into shipments after 2002. That fundamental mistake in analysis by the FBI in 2002 was on top of numerous other mistakes in analysis — like the ridiculous assumption that someone who used anthrax to kill 5 people would have left a paper trail showing he or she had it — and would voluntarily submit a sample.

    The FBI’s Ivins Theory was no more persuasive than their Hatfill Theory. The only difference is the FBI has stonewalled and provided the central documents showing their rationalizations (requiring acrobatic feats) to be crock. They have worked hard to keep key contemporaneous records not only from the public — but from Ivins himself as he was trying to reconstruct his time years after the fact.

    That despair and the FBI’s hounding then led to his suicide — and the FBI Agents and prosecutors and senior officials did not want to be blamed for Ivins’ suicide.

    There were numerous acute conflicts of interest in Amerithrax.

    The FBI Director in charge of Amerithrax then was appointed Special Prosecutor and is investigating the President of the United States.

    I say: partisan politics aside, there is some old business that needs to be addressed if the FBI is going to do more than pay lip service to the mantra of the rule of law.

    The FBI is quick to invoke it — and yet at the same time has always been contemptuous of Congressional oversight. (Take its 9 month or whatever delay in responding to Nadler’s letter on the Silicon Signature.

    Anthrax, Al Qaeda and Ayman Zawahiri: The Infiltration of US Biodefense
    http://www.amerithrax.wordpress.com

  61. DXer said

    Donald Trump Wants to Fight the FBI? It’s a Suicide Mission.
    Presidents who take on the Bureau rarely win.

    By TIM WEINER

    January 26, 2018

    https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2018/01/26/donald-trump-wants-to-fight-the-fbi-its-a-suicide-mission-216533

    On March 22, 1973, as the breath of the FBI’s bloodhounds grew hot, Nixon had a heart-to-heart with John Mitchell, the man who’d been his campaign manager, attorney general and criminal co-conspirator. The president concluded that a continuing obstruction of justice was his only recourse. The White House tapes spun silently: “I don’t give a shit what happens,” Nixon said. “I want you all to stonewall it … plead the Fifth Amendment, cover up. … We’re going to protect our people, if we can.”

    Comment: I took two classes from Archibald Cox — labor law and a First Amendment seminar. He was a very classy guy. He’ll be missed.

    Every time FBI FOIA’s David Hardy claims not to be able to find key documents that provably exist — or falsely claims that they have already been uploaded to the Vault — he should ask himself: what would Archibald Cox do? (I appreciate that Dave is extremely busy, and has many responsibilities and staff members — but he could not be unaware of what he is doing in withholding things like Notebook 4010 in the largest criminal investigation in history).

    FBI Director Chris Wray should look into this matter long enough to say, “if there is no exemption applicable to the Linscott and Fellows emails quoted and relied upon by the FBI, then they need to be produced…. same with the remaining 58 pages of Notebook 4010 that have not been produced. And Notebook 4037. And the family 302s. And the sections of the ICMS (case management summary) outline sections on forensics and the full text of the Bruce Ivins section.

    As for POI sections from the IMCS outline, there may well be the necessity of blacking out entire pages because the requestors are pretty good at filling in the blanks (knowing more about Amerithrax than the compartmentalized FBI Agents do).

    As for the Afghan sections, if that information had not been kept from the NAS, the NAS members would have even more clearly understood that BOTH the FBI and CIA detected Ames in Afghanistan.

    The NAS was prohibited from addressing the question of Ivin’s guilt or innocence, but at least there would have been greater clarity for the country had the FBI not played hide the ball in front of the NAS as to Ames in Afghanistan.

    In contrast to Watergate, as to Amerithrax, it is the FBI who continues to stonewall, abandoning the legacy and example of Archibald Cox.

    In Have We “Met the Enemy”?, Science 3 February 2012: Vol. 335 no. 6068 pp. 540-541, Dr. David Relman, who had been vice-chairman of the NAS Committee,
    Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 5, 2012
    https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/tag/david-relman/

    • DXer said

      The familly 302s can be redacted for privacy just as they were in the case of their production in the UNABOM matter.

      The most important thing that needs to be disclosed relates to the issue of alibi — the fact that they said he was home when the FBI guessed that perhaps he drove 7 hours round trip in the middle of the night before leaving for work at 7ish the next morning. Decker’s suggestion, in his recent book, that AUSA Lieber’s theory could “preclude” the alibi defense is nonsense. The jury would be faced with 3 adults who said it was not possible that was gone all night and they didn’t notice. On the one occasion of a trip to Ithaca they were out of town. As for drives late in the evening, that would be consistent with him working til midnight (or even past) at work. But to return home at dawn — twice — when the country was on alert after the first mailing — and this was his field — would not prevail, IMO, before a jury.

  62. DXer said

    Opinion

    Evidence suggests a massive scandal is brewing at the FBI

    By Michael Goodwin

    January 23, 2018

    https://nypost.com/2018/01/23/evidence-suggests-a-massive-scandal-is-brewing-at-the-fbi/

    During the financial crisis, the federal government bailed out banks it declared “too big to fail.” Fearing their bankruptcy might trigger economic Armageddon, the feds propped them up with taxpayer cash.

    Something similar is happening now at the FBI, with the Washington wagons circling the agency to protect it from charges of corruption. This time, the appropriate tag line is “too big to believe.”

    ***

    Partisan motives aside, it’s as if a scandal of this magnitude is more than America can bear — so let’s pretend there’s nothing to see and move along.

    ***

    The result was clear evidence of bias against Trump by officials charged with investigating him and Clinton

    Comment: Here, R. Scott Decker evidenced clear bias against Ivins. See his description of the meeting where he announced what his gut told him when Roth first took over.

    Scott was in the hazmat unit with John Ezzell, the guy who made a dried powder out of Flask 1029, the murder weapon. Scott was the one who kept that secret from the public – as he continues to do in his new book.

    The FBI’s lead consultant, JE, had made a dried powder out of Flask 1029 for DARPA and this was kept secret from the public. And it was his lab that threw out Ivins’ sample!

    As for the head prosecutor Seikaly’s bias, his sister and brother-in-law were publicly lecturing about how Bin Laden was not responsible for 9/11, and his daughter came to represent anthrax suspect Al-Timimi pro bono. Attorney Spikily, the father, pled the Fifth Amendment at a civil deposition probing who was responsible for spinning the leaked Hatfill Theory.

    The biases and conflicts in Amerithrax were far greater than the lead investigator opining that Trump was not qualified or suited to be President. Many tens and tens of millions of people thought that — and still do. So there was about an even chance that would be the feeling of any investigator. On the other hand, very few made a dried powder out of the “murder weapon” and kept it secret. Very few kept the genetically matching strain in their unlocked refrigerator and did not provide it as a sample — even though they were the ones collecting the samples for the FBI.

    As for extramarital affairs at the DOJ and how they can influence an investigation, I’ve addressed that previously. In Amerithrax, at least, Dillon is only seeking the emails to and from Ivins — he is not seeking the emails from prosecutors or investigators.

    • DXer said

      Flynn kept FBI interview concealed from White House, Trump

      NBC News
      CAROL E. LEE
      Jan 24th 2018
      https://www.aol.com/article/news/2018/01/24/flynn-kept-fbi-interview-concealed-from-white-house-trump/23342066/
      A brief phone call from the office of Andrew McCabe, the deputy FBI director, to a scheduler for Flynn on January 24 set the interview in motion, according to people familiar with the matter. The scheduler was told the FBI wanted to speak with Flynn later that day, these people said, and the meeting was placed on Flynn’s schedule. The scheduler didn’t ask the reason for the meeting, and the FBI didn’t volunteer it, one person familiar with the matter said.

      ***
      “And one of the two FBI agents who interviewed Flynn was Peter Strzok, whom Mueller removed from the Russia investigation last summer after the Justice Department’s inspector general’s office found he’d written text messages to a colleague criticizing Trump, according to people familiar with the matter.”

      Comment:

      Now., by analogy, consider FBI Agent R. Scott Decker’s first meeting with Ivins when, he reports in his book, his gut instinct about Ivins’ guilt first formed. He reacted to Ivins emphatic statement that they didn’t make dried powder at USAMRIID. Well, there is still no evidence that Ivins ever did, absolutely none — and there is ample evidence that he did not know that the USAMRIID scientist working with Decker for years – John Ezzell – had, using Ames supplied from Flask 1029, the so-called “murder weapon.”.

      Only being human, Decker was predisposed to not think that a scientist in his own unit somehow allowed virulent Ames to be obtained by someone who then used it in the Fall 2001 anthrax mailings. That’s just how the mind works. The brain naturally reaches the “CYA” conclusion. I mean who wants to think that a murder investigation would lead to one’s own scientist. Yet the genetically identical anthrax supplied by Ivins from Flask 1029 was stored in the suite (in 1412) used by Decker’s colleague who (unbeknownst to Ivins) had made the dried powder out of the Ames. This conflict of interest has always been breathtaking— and jaw-dropping. Yet Agent Decker wants to be the one who writes the history — and his former FBI colleagues, by failing to provide the relevant requested documents, have allowed him to keep the FBI’s dirty secrets under the rug and perpetuate the FBI’s finely spun yarn.

      This is not consistent with the rule of law. If the FBI is just going to pridefully pay lip service to the ideal, but not honor it when it is inconvenient or embarrassing, then the DOJ employees should find a different line of work. As it was, the head of the Washington Field Office, Persichini, the titular head of the investigation, resigned shortly after announcing an Ivins Theory for cheating on an open book exam on how to fairly and lawfully conduct a terrorism investigation.

    • DXer said

      And if you can’t tell the difference between a conservative conspiracy theory and a liberal MSNBC-watching lawyer’s pointing a conflict of interest, under standard conflict of interest analysis, then I bet you that you approach things from a self-interested or partisan, rather than truth-telling, perspective.

      Sources:

      Did USAMRIID’s John Ezzell and Terry Abshire, through no fault of their own, turn out to have a massive conflict of interest?
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on November 14, 2015
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2015/11/14/did-usamriids-john-ezzell-and-terry-abshire-through-no-fault-of-their-own-turn-out-to-have-a-massive-conflict-of-interest/

      FBI scientist John Ezzell has explained that dried Ames and Sterne spores went to studies for DARPA at Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Labs in Columbia, MD
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on October 28, 2015
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2015/10/28/fbi-scientist-john-ezzell-has-explained-that-dried-ames-and-sterne-spores-went-to-studies-for-darpa-at-johns-hopkins-applied-physics-labs-in-columbia-md/

      In addition to the 340 ml. of virulent Ames shipped to USAMRIID on June 27, 2001, Dugway shipped 175 ml. of Ames anthrax strain in late August 2000. That was when Dr. Ezzell, the FBI’s scientist at USAMRIID, made a dried powder out of Ames anthrax strain from Ivins’ Flask 1029 for the DARPA JHU-APL mass spec. project.
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on October 28, 2015
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2015/10/28/in-addition-to-the-340-ml-of-virulent-ames-shipped-to-usamriid-on-june-27-2001-dugway-shipped-175-ml-of-ames-anthrax-strain-in-late-august-2000-that-was-when-dr-ezzell-the-fbis-scient/

      Terry Abshire in a document produced this week under FOIA explains that the genetically matching sample she had in her lab was not submitted in the initial set ; instead, wasn’t her lab provided genetically matching material in August 2000 for DARPA research in which Dr. Ezzell made a dried powder out of the Ames and gave it to the DARPA researchers?
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on October 6, 2011
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/10/06/terry-abshire-in-a-document-produced-this-week-under-foia-explains-that-the-genetically-matching-sample-she-had-in-her-lab-was-not-submitted-in-the-initial-set-instead-wasnt-her-lab-provided-ge/

    • DXer said

      Additional source relating to FBI conflict of interest:

      Who in Dr. Ezzell’s lab threw out Ivins’ February 2002 sample which contained the 4 morphs?
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 22, 2011
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/03/22/who-in-dr-ezzells-lab-threw-out-ivins-february-2002-sample-which-contained-the-4-morphs/

      why did the FBI keep evidence of John Ezzell’s dried powder from the NAS?
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on March 21, 2011
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/03/21/why-did-fbi-keep-evidence-of-john-ezzells-dried-powder-from-the-nas/

      Is Southern Research Institute the phrase that fits in front of laboratory in regard to the location that aerosol work for DARPA was done? Was it Johns-Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory? Or instead were the special facilities built at USAMRIID. The research involved the FBI’s anthrax expert John Ezzell and his assistant Joany Jackman.
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on July 21, 2011
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/07/21/is-southern-research-institute-the-phrase-that-fits-in-front-of-laboratory-in-regard-to-the-location-that-aerosol-work-for-darpa-was-done-or-was-it-johns-hopkins-university-applied-physics-labora/

      This is an interview of a scientist who had been working on the DARPA research while at USAMRIID; did Joany Jackman leave the remaining Ames from Flask 1029 with Terry Abshire or John Ezzell when she left?
      Posted by Lew Weinstein on April 12, 2011
      https://caseclosedbylewweinstein.wordpress.com/2011/04/12/his-is-an-interview-of-a-scientist-who-had-been-working-on-the-darpa-research-while-at-usamriid-did-joany-jackman-leave-the-remaining-ames-from-flask-1029-with-terry-abshire-or-john-ezzell-when-she/

    • DXer said

      In his new book, former FBI Agent R. Scott Decker writes:

      “One email to Linscott, in the spring of 2000, talked of hiding liquor bottles at home.” (p. 199)

      Yikes. You mean Scott doesn’t? Is he not married or does he not sometimes do things without telling his wife.

      And this is somehow evidence of Bruce Ivins’ guilt of murder. How?

      I’ve got an idea. If you are going to profit by selling a $38 dollar book characterizing Bruce Ivins emails to Mara Linscott, how about you encourage your former colleagues to comply with the governing statute and produce them under FOIA, so that researchers and journalists can test your gut instinct, that you had from first meeting Ivins, that Ivins was guilty?

      Memo to the file: Gut instincts cannot be validated and have no place in the FBI’s science squad. The squad should be developing and relying on forensic evidence.

    • DXer said

      At page 188, former FBI Agent Decker in his recent book refers to Ivins’s own admissions to emails to Linscott (see p. 188).

      What admission was that, Scott? Was that his lament in summer of 2000 that the burden of working odd hours — nights and weekends — fell on him? (We only learned about that upon the forced production this past month of one of the Linscott emails).

      His admission that Bioport’s failure might lead to them having to challenge hundreds of rabbits? (We only learned about that upon the forced production this past month of one of the Linscott emails).

      His admissions to Linscott that the Yankees were an admirable team — spending their money on players well — while the Orioles sucked? (We only learned about that upon the forced production this past month of one of the Linscott emails).

      His admission to Linscott that he had no idea how to make a bioweapon, and that the FBI’s incessant accusations, hounding and interviews were causing him great upset? (We only learned about that upon the forced production after withholding for years).

      That he had ben suicidal in the late 1990s? (We only learned about that upon the forced production after withholding for years). Given that you knew he was suicidal, might you have given him his contemporaneous documents so that he could reconstruct his time? What were you trying to do? Pressurize him until he broke so that it didn’t come out that it was the scientist from your unit that made a powder of Flask 1029, the so-called murder weapon?

      You know, given the FBI’s withholding of the emails, it is hard for us to know (at least those not content on your highly selective presentation of excerpts from his emails). Your own former lead investigator says your presentation of Ivins Theory is highly selective and that you are withholding a staggering amount of exculpatory information.

      Why were you so relentlessly pressuring him instead of giving him the contemporaneous documents that he was begging for — given that people just don’t remember such details years later (or even a week or month later often).

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