Here, you are urged and encouraged to run your mouths about something important.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Subpoenaed US Attorney in Fast and Furious to Plead the Fifth

Yesterday, it was learned that Oversight Committee chairman, Rep. Darrell Issa issued a subpoena for the testimony of Patrick Cunningham, the chief of the Criminal Division of Arizona's U.S. Attorney's Office. Today, we learn that Cunningham is pleading the Fifth.

Via Fox News:
The chief of the Criminal Division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Arizona is refusing to testify before Congress regarding Operation Fast and Furious, the federal gun-running scandal that sent U.S. weapons to Mexico.

Patrick J. Cunningham informed the House Oversight Committee late Thursday through his attorney that he will use the Fifth Amendment protection.

Cunningham was ordered Wednesday to appear before Chairman Darrell Issa and the House Oversight Committee regarding his role in the operation that sent more than 2,000 guns to the Sinaloa Cartel. Guns from the failed operation were found at the murder scene of Border Agent Brian Terry.
Sipsey Street is reporting that this could - underscore could - actually be a bad sign and speculates that Issa's Committee may be backing down to the White House and Justice Department by focusing exclusively on Arizona and possibly acquiescing to the narrative that says Fast and Furious originated at the lower levels.
"I won't say that the fix is in, but the Committee seems to be buying into the 'Made-in-Phoenix' line pushed by the White House," said one source with inside knowledge of the investigator's work. This seems to be reflected in the subpoena letter from Issa to Cunningham. From (a) Politico story:

“Senior Justice Department officials have recently told the Committee that you relayed inaccurate and misleading information to the Department in preparation for its initial response to Congress,” wrote Issa. “These officials told us that even after Congress began investigating Fast and Furious, you continued to insist that no unacceptable tactics were used.”

The White House is happy for Issa to go after Cunningham for this is consistent with their denial that the White House had anything to do with gunwalking. Indeed, from the evidence above it would seem that the White House has determined Cunningham to be one of the designated sacrificial goats to that end.
Sipsey Street, which has developed a very credible reputation, then addresses what it views as the Oversight Committee's increased silence about the case:
This also comes at a time when journalists -- "mainstream" and despised bloggers alike -- have for weeks encountered a black hole when it comes to trying to find out what the Committee is working on and whether the story is progressing. "They've become the roach motel of press inquiries," said one. "Inquiries go in, but nothing comes out."
Another source, according to SS, is making the charge that Issa's Committee is fearful of both the FBI and the White House:
Another source familiar with the Issa investigation shared his fears about the direction and speed of the investigation. "They are afraid of the FBI" and are unwilling to really go after the Brian Terry murder cover-up and the use of FBI paid informants to buy weapons from the straw-buyers, he said. "They are afraid of the White House, too," indicating a reluctance to go after certain players in the early meetings such as that one held in March 2009 between ATF SAC Bill Newell and White House and DHS operatives, including, according to one report, Dennis Burke.
There is a chance that these claims are not accurate or that they are being driven by different motivations but if there is something to them, it wouldn't be good at all.

Read it for yourself HERE.

Video: Republican Debate opens with Newt Ripping CNN Moderator

The CNN debate opened up with John King asking Newt Gingrich to respond to the ABC story that included an interview with the former Speaker's ex-wife and about Newt wanting an 'open marriage.' King's question was obviously intended to embarrass Gingrich but it was King who was shamed by Newt and it was quite obvious.

Toward the end of this clip, Gingrich put his finger on the pulse of what's really going on. The liberal media is protecting Obama by levying vicious attacks against all Republican candidates. That is a theme that needs to continue because the more that fact is revealed, the more exposed Obama becomes.

Via Daily Caller:

After the debate, Greta Van Susteren interviewed Gingrich and asked him about the exchange:

Feds Indict File-Sharing Site, Hacked by 'Anonymous'

As the forceful public rejection of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect IP Act (PIPA) escalates, an increasing number of congressmen are backing down. All four Republican presidential candidates vehemently denounced the legislation at the CNN debate, with the exception of Rick Santorum. Though he expressed disapproval with the bills in their current form, he defended them to some degree. Amidst the pending legislation, the Feds issued indictments to a large file-sharing website known as Megaupload.

Via the UK Guardian:
The US government has closed down one of the world's largest filesharing websites, accusing its founders of racketeering, money laundering and presiding over "massive" online piracy.

According to prosecutors, Megaupload illegally cheated copyright holders out of $500m in revenue as part of a criminal enterprise spanning five years.

A lawyer for Megaupload told the Guardian it would "vigorously" defend itself against the charges, dismissing the criminal action as "a civil case in disguise".

News of the indictment – being framed as one of the biggest copyright cases in US history – came a day after major internet firms held a 24-hour protest over proposed anti-piracy laws.

According to a Department of Justice release, seven people associated with Megaupload were indicted by a federal grand jury earlier this month over the charges.
While this seems like something SOPA and PIPA were written to help enforce, verbiage in the two bills could allow the Justice Department to shut down sites it doesn't like (think China).

In any event, it appears that the computer hacking group known as 'Anonymous,' has attacked multiple government and media websites in response to both SOPA and the Megaupload indictments.

Via Gizmodo:
Anonymous has sure been quiet lately, but today's federal bust of Megaupload riled 'em up good: a retaliatory strike against (and plenty of other foes) leaving them completely dead. is reporting the department's site as universally nuked, and an Anonymous-affiliated Twitter account is boasting success. This is almost certainly the result of a quickly-assembled DDoS attack—and easily the widest in scope and ferocity we've seen in some time. If you had any doubts Anonymous is still a hacker wrecking ball, doubt no more.
Be sure to check out the Gizmodo link; they are providing several updates to this story. One of them includes a statement from 'Anonymous' about the attack. The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) website was one of the sites that went down. Interestingly, the chairman of MPAA is former Connecticut Senator, Chris Dodd. The statement from Anonymous includes a list of all the sites it attacked as well as some specific personal information about Dodd.

Most of the sites appear to be back up but it's safe to say that this is getting pretty ugly.

h/t Drudge
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