Inspector General Investigation Over Possible DOJ Retaliation Against Gunrunning Whistleblower

It’s the Chicago way.

Operation Fast and Furious — and other alleged “gunwalker” programs — only ended when whistleblowers came forward from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) after a firefight in Rio Rico, Arizona, left Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry dead.

NPR – yes, NPR – is now reporting that the Department of Justice inspector general is launching an investigation into whether or not the DOJ illegally retaliated against one of the agents that revealed the gunwalking plot:

“The Justice Department’s inspector general has opened an investigation into possible retaliation against a whistleblowing agent at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, according to two people briefed on the inquiry.

Watchdogs are examining whether anyone at the Justice Department improperly released internal correspondence to try to smear ATF agent John Dodson, who told the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee last month that he repeatedly warned supervisors about what he called a reckless law enforcement operation known as “Fast and Furious.”

The inspector general is attempting to determine if Obama’s Justice Department leaked one of Dodson’s internal memos to reporters in order to discredit him.”

……The Justice Department has been ruthless in dealing with the whistleblowers, who have blown the lid off an operation that saw the director-level involvement of every law enforcement entity within the DOJ, in addition to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and likely the State Department.

In addition to retaliating against Dodson, the DOJ stands accused of firing 30-year ATF Agent Vince Cefalu for his role in bringing this and other illegal operations to light at a website he helped found: CleanUpATF.org.
http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/gunwalker-justice-dept-inspector-general-opens-investigation/

Nothing Holder does surprises me. There’s a big problem with the Inspector General.  Obama fixed it so that the IG would be one of his tools.

You’ve heard a lot about the astonishing spending in the $787 billion economic stimulus bill, signed into law this week by President Barack Obama. But you probably haven’t heard about a provision in the bill that threatens to politicize the way allegations of fraud and corruption are investigated — or not investigated — throughout the federal government. Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board — the RAT Board, as it’s known by the few insiders who are aware of it. The board would oversee the in-house watchdogs, known as inspectors general, whose job is to independently investigate allegations of wrongdoing at various federal agencies, without fear of interference by political appointees or the White House.

The provision, which attracted virtually no attention in the debate over the 1,073-page stimulus bill, creates something called the

In the name of accountability and transparency, Congress has given the RAT Board the authority to ask “that an inspector general conduct or refrain from conducting an audit or investigation.” If the inspector general doesn’t want to follow the wishes of the RAT Board, he’ll have to write a report explaining his decision to the board, as well as to the head of his agency (from whom he is supposedly independent) and to Congress. In the end, a determined inspector general can probably get his way, but only after jumping through bureaucratic hoops that will inevitably make him hesitate to go forward.

……When I inquired with the office of a Democratic senator, one who is a big fan of inspectors general, I was told the RAT Board was “something the Obama administration wanted included in this bill.” When I asked the White House, staffers told me they’d look into it. So for now, at least, there’s been no claim of paternity.
http://www.dcexaminer.com/politics/The-RAT-hiding-deep-inside-the-stimulus-bill-39805642.html

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/article/136699

What this boils down to is Obama placing restrictions on who and what gets investigated by the very watchdog group that oversees and conducts the investigations.   This whole scandal calls for a Congressional investigation with Holder and Obama in the hotseat.

Related post:
https://sfcmac.wordpress.com/2011/07/22/more-gunrunning-state-department-selling-weapons-to-zetas-cartel/

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