It’s the most famous low-speed chase since the O.J. Simpson case!
The Washington State Police switchboard lit up like a Roman candle when folks spotted a state trooper pursuing an elderly woman on a handicap scooter – at 3.5 mph! “You can’t make this stuff up!” said Andrea Ruth, who taped the incident from her office. The 85-year-old driver had hopped on her scooter and headed out for a cup of coffee one day in early June. But she wound up four miles out of her way on Route 246 – a heavily traveled highway near the Canadian border. That’s when State Trooper Dave Hintz roared into action, and pulled her over. “There’s no license plate. She’s in a little cart,” recalled the 24-year veteran, who quickly determined the driver wasn’t a “Grandma of Anarchy.” “I just treated her the way I would’ve wanted somebody to treat my mom,” he added. After that, the pair started the long crawl home, which took more than an hour! “When he got her to her block, she told him she could take it from there,” said Trooper Mark Francis, who said the woman didn’t want her identity released. Dave added: “Our motto with the State Patrol is service with humility. This particular case took a little more patience and humility.”
&amp;lt;a href=”http://ad.doubleclick.net/N4216/jump/ami.neq.true_crime/;pos=pushdown;sz=970×66;aid=61010;qa=no;ord=2030036268?”&amp;gt;&amp;lt;img src=”http://ad.doubleclick.net/N4216/ad/ami.neq.true_crime/;pos=pushdown;sz=970×66;aid=61010;qa=no;ord=2030036268?” alt=”” /&amp;gt;&amp;Jimmy Hoffa’s Corpse Found In New Jersey
One of the most baffling mysteries of the last 40 years — the shocking disappearance of union boss Jimmy Hoffa — has been solved!
After vanishing in 1975, Hoffa was finally found buried in a garbage dump, sealed in a barrel — and a bombshell National ENQUIRER investigation reveals the Teamsters kingpin was murdered on the orders of Sen. Ted Kennedy! The monumental discovery has been hushed up by the Justice Department. But a crack team of G-men unearthed a 55-gallon drum containing Hoffa’s remains in a New Jersey dump shortly before Thanksgiving, confidential law enforcement sources revealed. The sources said a top-secret dossier that pointed the feds to the burial site also fingered two hitmen — and one of the killers was working for Ted, the powerful Massachusetts senator who hated Hoffa! “The lead came from papers written by Hoffa’s killer to a one-time lover,” said a law-enforcement source. “These papers specifically mention Kennedy. “We believe this individual took his direct orders from Senator Edward M. Kennedy.” Agents also interviewed close associates of the heavyweight Democratic politician — and at least two are convinced Ted ordered Hoffa’s death. The execution of Hoffa — the infamously corrupt, 62-year-old former president of the powerful truckers union — was Ted’s revenge for the murder of his brother Bobby, who was assassinated while campaigning for the presidency in 1968. “Bobby Kennedy and Jimmy Hoffa were bitter enemies,” explained the source. “Bobby helped send Hoffa to prison, and Teddy always believed Hoffa was involved somehow in Bobby’s assassination. Hoffa got the payback he deserved.” But someone is silencing people involved in the murder, the source said. One hit-man involved in Hoffa’s gangland-style execution died mysteriously in a 1997 house fire later ruled as arson. His partner in crime is now on the run and laying low, an insider close to the investigation revealed. “The surviving killer has links to the New York crime family formerly headed by Carlo Gambino, which once struggled for control of the Teamsters,” the source said. “He was last spotted in Italy over the summer, but is now believed to have fled to South America. Word is he now suffers from severe arthritis and often uses a motorized cart to get around.” The assassin was ratted out by his former lover, now a 68-year-old woman who turned over a treasure trove of documents to the FBI. The papers detail the thug’s meetings with Kennedy and the grisly way Hoffa was slain and horribly mutilated. One of the killers emptied his revolver into Hoffa’s head and then sliced off the union leader’s manhood as a gruesome trophy of the killing. Hoffa’s body was then chopped into pieces and stuffed in the drum, which was welded shut and shipped to the Garden State — in a Teamster-driven truck! Lawmen revealed the hit team secretly met with Kennedy on three different occasions — including a sit-down just 11 days before Hoffa disappeared. A key document also pinpointed the dump in New Jersey where Hoffa was left to rot, but sources remain tight-lipped about the exact location of the burial site. “They want to get the last killer before he realizes Hoffa’s remains have finally been located,” said the insider. “They don’t want to spook him. But they’re worried now because they can’t find him.” Investigators also fear that if the location of the dump is disclosed, the place will be flooded by the media and the public seeking souvenirs. Before he died, mobster Phillip Moscato claimed the union head had been entombed in a drum and buried at a toxic waste dump under Jersey City’s Pulaski Skyway. Sources refuse to confirm that was the burial site. But they say a team of four FBI agents and two Justice Department officials removed Hoffa’s remains from Jersey and took them to Washington. There, forensics investigators positively identified the body parts as the former Teamsters boss. The ID brings some closure a case that has confused so many. Hoffa was targeted by then-Attorney General Bobby Kennedy for his ties to the mob, and convicted in 1964 of fraud, bribery and jury tampering. He spent four years in prison before President Richard Nixon pardoned him in 1971. Hoffa was last seen on his way to a lunch meeting with two mobsters at Machus Red Fox eatery outside of Detroit on July 30, 1975. “Teddy always suspected Hoffa was tied up in his brother’s murder,” says the source. “In the end, he found a way to even the score with Hoffa.”
Typical biased bought and paid for ‘media’ reporting supporting the illegal ‘government’ and ‘law enforcement actions along with the typical to be expected SPLC BS. Easy to figure out the truth by reversing all this reporter is stating.
MILITIAMEN AND RANCHERS IN SHOWDOWN FOR THE SOUL OF BURNS COUNTY OREGON
BURNS – The strangers carrying the whisper of danger arrived in the vast territory of the Harney Basin just before the holidays.
Ammon Bundy once helped his father repulse the government in an armed showdown on a Nevada desert. He was tasered for his effort.
Ryan Payne, an electrician from Montana, joined that same standoff and boasted of organizing civilians into sniper squads that drew a bead on federal agents.
And not long ago, Jon Ritzheimer worried the FBI with his threatening rants against muslims in Arizona and elsewhere, according to press reports.
Now, the men say, they are in Burns to help Dwight and Steven Hammond.
The Hammonds are father and son ranchers, due to report to federal prison on Monday. They were ” in 2012 of ‘arson for lighting public land on fire’ adjacent to their ranch land south of Burns. They have been imprisoned once and must return for an additional term after ‘federal appellate judges’ said they had been illegally sentenced the first time. (Trumped up charges as with the Bundys. The ‘government’ CANNOT OWN LAND – the land belongs to the people. NO ‘GOVERNMENT’ OWNED OR HELD LAND WAS DAMAGED IN ANY WAY by the Hammonds.)
Self-styled patriots and militiamen gathering in Burns don’t want that to happen, declaring the Hammonds’ imprisonment illegal under the U.S. Constitution.
They have latched on to the Hammonds as their latest cause to stand against the ‘federal government’. (This ‘government’ is an ILLEGAL ‘GOVERNMENT’, BANKRUPT ONCE AGAIN, AND OUT OF BUSINESS. The BLM and other ‘agencies’ are now agents of the UN / NWO / Agenda 2030). SOMEONE PLEASE PUT THESE SLIME OUT OF BUSINESS PERMANENTLY AND REMOVE THEM FROM AMERICA, ESPECIALLY BY 1ST JANUARY 2016)
“I am here now trying to empower and motivate the people of this community to take a stand against tyranny and show them that I will gladly stand with them,” Ritzheimer said.
The Hammonds don’t want to be part of the outsiders’ cause, and neither do many in Harney County. But that hasn’t stopped the strangers from summoning help from militia groups across the country. They are vague about their intention and their plans, unsettling the community and putting law enforcement on edge. The militia plan a rally and a parade on Saturday, circling the county courthouse that houses the sheriff’s office.
The militia members have been insisting that Harney County Sheriff Dave Ward create a sanctuary so the Hammonds will be immune from surrendering. Ward met with the militiamen and rejected that demand. The militia has since labeled him an “enemy of the people.” Ward said he has received emailed death threats among thousands of messages from across the country regarding the Hammonds.
Two weeks ago, Bundy and Payne roused 60 or so local citizens to their cause at a community meeting. They rented the Memorial Building at the fairgrounds for the night. They taped themselves lecturing the locals on their rights, on the Constitution, and on their duty to protect themselves. (If Americans don’t stand up against this totally unlawful tyranny, we will lose it all.) The Harney County situation is the second time this year Oregon has been the national rallying point for militias. Last spring, miners fighting with the Bureau of Land Management over paperwork outside Medford found themselves enveloped with militia defenders. Militia members eventually left – but only after claiming they beat back the government. An ‘administrative law judge’ temporarily stopped BLM action against the miners. But the activists carrying pocket editions of the Constitution with them to Harney County are better known for the spectacle in Nevada in spring 2014. The BLM was the bogeyman there, too.
Militiamen by the hundreds flowed to Nevada that year to help rancher Cliven Bundy. The BLM was corralling his cattle that it said were trespassing on public land. The agency said Bundy hadn’t paid grazing fees for 20 years, amassing more than $1 million in bills.
Payne, an Army veteran, came to the rancher’s defense. In later interviews, Payne said he was the “militia adviser” to Bundy. Payne helped array armed civilians against the federal agents.
“We had counter-sniper positions on their sniper positions. We had at least one guy—sometimes two guys—per BLM agent in there,” Payne told a Montana weekly, the Independent. “If they made one wrong move, every single BLM agent in that camp would’ve died.”
Ammon Bundy, Cliven Bundy’s third son, was there too. As the nation watched, the BLM called off the cattle collection and withdrew in the face of the armed militia.
Ryan Lenz with the law center was on the ground in Nevada and later interviewed Payne for the report. Lenz said the Harney County development isn’t surprising. “What’s happening is very much what everyone feared would happen in the aftermath of the Bundy standoff,” Lenz said. “The rule of law was suspended with the barrel of a gun.” (This ‘rule of law’ is the law of the sea, not the legal and rightful common law of this land. These illegal magistrates for the Queen are NOT welcome on the ground of the united States.)
Aiding the Hammonds
Bundy and Payne say they met with both Dwight and Susan Hammond at their home in November. Bundy said he helped the ranchers move cows one day.
The Hammonds initially accepted the militia’s offer of help to avoid prison, Bundy said. But the Hammonds changed their minds after being warned by federal prosecutors to stop communicating with the militia, Bundy wrote in a blog post.
The Hammonds declined interview requests and didn’t respond to written questions about their dealings with the militiamen. A Boise lawyer representing the Hammonds said in a letter to the sheriff that Bundy didn’t speak for the ranchers and that they intended to surrender as required.
Bundy and Payne and their associates are persisting, though. They explain in deliberate, calm tones their reasoning.
The ‘federal government’ claims title to most of the land in Harney County, the ninth largest county in the United States. Bundy and Payne maintain that Article 1, Section 8, Clause 17 of the U.S. Constitution limits what the federal government can own, and that the government’s claim to much of Harney County violates that limit. The ‘federal government’ consequently has no authority to prosecute the Hammonds.
Bundy and Payne, who said he has moved to Harney County, have pressed the matter on several fronts. They have insisted that Ward, the sheriff, protect the Hammonds. They have written other elected officials in the county and in Oregon asserting the same demand.
Some residents have shown interest in the group’s cause.
Locals voted seven of their own onto a new Harney County Committee of Safety, including ranchers, a retired fire chief, and a tax preparer.
Payne and Bundy said the committee would decide how to address the Hammond conflict. But Bundy quickly created a website for the group and drafted a sharply-worded letter to the sheriff for the committee to issue. Citizens on the committee said they authorized none of it.
Chris Briels, Burns fire chief for 24 years, said he was intrigued by the constitutional arguments raised by Payne and Bundy. But he said he also felt pushed too hard by Bundy to act. Briels said he is no anarchist. The militia, Briels said, “seems like a bunch of people ready to shoot. I don’t want that in my county.”
Melodi Molt, a rancher and former president of Oregon CattleWomen, joined Briels on the new committee. She’s troubled by what’s happened to the Hammonds – but also worried about what her community faces with the outsiders.
“We’re not from the militia,” said Molt. “We’re not going to come in with guns and overthrow the government.”
The state’s largest agriculture associations have vigorously defended the Hammonds since they were charged but want no part of the brewing militia action.
“I don’t think people lining up in front of them with weapons or any kind of threats are going to help the Hammonds at all,” said Barry Bushue, Oregon Farm Bureau president.
Billy Williams, Oregon’s U.S. attorney, has also weighed in. In a lengthy statement to the Burns Times-Herald, Williams explained why the Hammonds were prosecuted. He then warned: “Any criminal behavior contemplated by those who may object to the court’s mandate that harms someone will not be tolerated and will result in serious consequences.”
Payne and Bundy say it’s up to local residents what happens next. If the locals decide to declare the county a sanctuary for the Hammonds, the militia is ready.
“We’re sending the message: We will protect you,” Payne said.
Such talk rattles the community, as has conduct locals blame on the strangers.
A Utah man tied to Bundy and Payne disrupted a state court session, insisting the judge empanel a special grand jury to investigate the Hammond matter. Federal employees report they have been followed around town and to their homes. Payne said no one in his group has followed federal employees. But he acknowledged knocking on the front door of a home featuring a handmade “Go Home Bundys” sign. Payne said he wanted to understand the homeowner’s concerns. Signs on street poles pronounce, “Militia go home!”
Others reply: “You are the militia.”
One episode in particular has upset the community. The sheriff said three militiamen and one woman, one with a gun strapped to his hip, engaged his 74-year-old mother and 78-year-old father at a yard sale being held at the American Legion. When the men criticized the sheriff, his mother bristled, and said she didn’t need their protection from the ‘government’.
Later, the men showed up at the sheriff’s office to complain about the exchange involving his mother. She had, they said, threatened them.
After having lived for seven years with an abusive husband, I decided it was time to leave. I didn’t think I would survive another year if I stayed, so in 2011, I walked out the door and broke the crippling silence and isolation the abuse had made me feel. I felt empowered and free, and finally looked forward to my future. But because I left my marriage, my husband considered me “disobedient” and, therefore, worthy of punishment. So one day, when he called me to pick up my children at his house and suddenly acid was thrown at my face and body.
The next thing I knew, my face felt as if it were on fire. My skin was literally melting away.
He thought he would break my spirit, but he only made me stronger. Since my attack, I have been fighting to put an end to this horrific practice in my country of Uganda, and I need your help to do it. Please support our petition by asking H.E. President Yoweri Museveni Kaguta to sign the Toxic Chemicals Bill into law.
That is my story, but there are many more, each one as harrowing as the last. Acid violence occurs around the globe and isn’t specific to race or religion. My country, Uganda, has some of the highest rates of acid violence. In fact, since 1985, there have been nearly 400 reported cases of acid attacks here, and in just one hospital alone, they have reported 8 attacks and two deaths this year. And those are just the ones that were reported. The real statistics are likely much higher.
My name is Hanifa Nakiryowa,and my fellow acid attack survivor Gloria Kankunda and I have founded the Center for Rehabilitation of Survivors of Acid and burns Violence (CERESAV). We founded CERESAV because of our personal experiences, and because of the stories we were told by fellow victims. CERESAV’s ultimate goal is to address the issue of acid attacks and gender violence on a global level, but today we have a chance to make a difference in Uganda by helping to pass legislation that would classify products like acid as controlled substances. Cutting off easy access to acid has proven to drastically reduce the rate of attacks in other countries.
Research indicates that the most effective ways to reduce acid violence are through regulation of the sale of acid, tougher jail sentences for perpetrators, and raising awareness of the devastating impact that acid attacks have on individuals and their families. Step by step, CERESAV hopes to make all of these things a reality, but we can’t do it alone.
With collective efforts, we can end this devastating act and save the next potential victim. I know we can make a difference. When strong women and fellow victims of female-directed violence, like Jaha who fought to end female genital mutilation, or Malala who is a champion for girls’ education started Change.org petitions, great things happened.
Please join me in asking H.E. President Yoweri Museveni Kaguta to sign the Toxic Chemicals Bill into law.
Christian Bakers Say the Government Cleaned Out Their Bank Accounts
2:00PM EST 12/29/2015
Aaron and Melissa Klein say the government cleaned out their bank account. (Reuters) Melissa Klein was checking her bank accounts just a few weeks before Christmas when her face turned ashen. The money was gone—every single penny.
Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries had confiscated all the cash in Mrs. Klein’s checking account and savings account as well as a special account set aside for their church tithe.
Yes, friends—the state of Oregon stole money meant for our Lord.
Mrs. Klein and her husband, Aaron, are devout evangelical Christians who own a mom-and-pop bakery—Sweet Cakes By Melissa.
In July, they were ordered to pay more than $135,000 in damages to a lesbian couple after they refused to bake their wedding cake. The Kleins objected because of their religious beliefs.
The judgment was awarded to the lesbians for “emotional suffering.” (What about the ’emotional suffering’ of the Kleins, as well as the loss to their personal lives and their business?)
Just a few weeks before Christmas, Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian wiped out the Klein family’s bank accounts—taking nearly $7,000. (Sounds like Kleins have a valid lawsuit to me.)
Faced with a state-mandated 9 percent interest penalty, the Kleins opted to pay the disputed amount in full—turning over a $136,927.07 check to the corporation ‘government’. That money, which was not in their bank account, was acquired through donations to the family. (No hearing on behalf of the Kleins, no consideration for their religious beliefs or hardships.)
It was the price the Kleins had to pay for following the teachings of Jesus Christ.
“It was like my breath was taken away,” Mrs. Klein told me in a telephone conversation. “I panicked. Everything was gone.”
And as I said before, Commissioner Avakian even seized money set aside for You Know Who.
“We had three accounts,” she told me. “I have one account that’s labeled, ‘God’s money’—our tithing. They just took it.” Attorney Tyler Smith, who represents the Kleins, tells me his clients still plan on fighting the state’s decision—even if it means going to the Supreme Court. (Hope this ‘attorney’ is a good one because he stands to make a huge profit off this case, leaving the Kleins in deeper financial trouble trying to defend their rights.)
“The least expensive option to stay in compliance with the law was to pay the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries funds that will be kept in a separate account until they prevail in their court appeal,” Smith told me in a prepared statement. He said the couple had asked the state to hold off on collection attempts—but that request was denied.
“Aaron and Melissa will continue to work to ensure that every American has the First Amendment right to express their faith-based beliefs, and to conduct their daily affairs according to their conscience,” Smith said.
Their trouble started in 2013 when Laurel and Rachel Bowman-Cryer asked the Christian bakers to prepare their wedding cake.
When Mr. Klein explained that they would not be able to prepare the cake, the women filed an anti-discrimination complaint with the state of Oregon. (You mean there were no other bakeries to consult with within 50 miles of their wedding location?)
The state later determined that gay rights trump religious liberty—ruling that the Kleins had violated the lesbians’ civil rights by discriminating based on sexual orientation. (What about the Klein’s civil rights?)
Oregon has a law on the books that protects the rights of gays, lesbians, bisexual and transgender people in employment, housing and public accommodations. It also prohibits private businesses from discriminating against potential customers, the newspaper noted.
The Kleins were also slapped with a gag order—banning them from speaking publicly about their refusal to participate in or bake wedding cakes for same-sex marriages, The Oregonian reported.
They were ordered to “cease and desist from publishing, circulating, issuing or displaying, or causing to be published, circulated, issued or displayed, any communication, notice, advertisement or sign of any kind to the effect that any of the accommodations, advantages, facilities, services or privileges of a place of public accommodation will be refused, withheld from or denied to, or that any discrimination will be made against, any person on account of sexual orientation.”
“Within Oregon’s public accommodations law is the basic principle of human decency that every person, regardless of their sexual orientation, has the freedom to fully participate in society,” the ruling states. “The ability to enter public places, to shop and dine, to move about unfettered by bigotry.”
On a side note here—I predicted that once gay marriage was legalized, LGBTQIA supporters would attempt to silence all dissent.
After the controversy, the Kleins had no choice but to shut down their retail store and move their business to their home.
Avakian has publicly stated his intentions to target Christian business owners who do not comply with the state’s way of thinking. Here’s what he told The Oregonian about Sweet Cakes By Melissa in 2013:
“The goal is never to shut down a business. The goal is to ‘rehabilitate’.”
I’ve never met Brad Avakian, but he sounds like a pretty ruthless individual—a person who is using his office to bully and intimidate Christians.
Be warned, friends. In Oregon, gay rights trump religious liberty. (AND your Constitutional rights.)
Surprise! Over the course of just a few days concealed carry permit holders stopped at least 3 different violent crimes from occurring… sadly, the liberal media failed to report those important events.
On December 22nd, in Gary, Indiana, one criminal was killed and another wounded when they tried to rob two men from Illinois who had been traveled to Gary to purchase a car. They’d found the vehicle on Craigslist and had made arrangements to buy the car, but it was all an elaborate ruse to lure the car-buyers in.
The would-be car buyers — a 55-year-old man from Olympia Fields and a 65-year-old from Chicago Heights — called police around 7 p.m. Sunday to report a shooting on Gary’s west side. They told officers that they made arrangements to make a purchase from Craigslist, when the man and woman they planned to meet with tried to rob them, according to Gary Police Lt. Thomas Pawlak, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
When Johnson pulled a gun, one of the buyers took out his own gun and fired at the couple, Lt. Pawlak said.
On December 23rd in Miramar, Florida, a thief was shot and killed during an armed robbery at a restaurant.
A would-be thief was shot and killed by a Miramar restaurant employee during an armed robbery attempt Wednesday night, police said…
The suspect entered the eatery wearing a ski mask and gloves. The employee fired several shots, killing the suspect, Rues said.
At least one customer and other employees were in the restaurant at the time but no other injuries were reported.
“There were words that were spoken and at present time we are taking a statement from the employee that fired his weapon and bystanders that were at the restaurant as well,” Rues said.
On Christmas night in Warner Robbins, Georgia, an accused robber was killed when his victim shot him in self-defense. Police are still investigating this case as a possible crime.
Every morning I peruse through dozens and dozens of news stories in search of topics to report on and one thing I’ve noticed is how many news reports there are about criminals and illegal guns.
Convicted felons are not allowed to own or possess a firearm, but that doesn’t seem to prevent many of them from obtaining a gun. In just one day I saw 8 reports of law enforcement arresting someone for illegally possessing a gun or guns. Those reports include raids on drug houses or illegal marijuana farms and law enforcement officers responding to calls and finding firearms in the possession of convicted felons.
In all of these cases, none of the firearms discovered and confiscated, had been obtained legally. Some of the guns had been stolen, some had the serial numbers removed and most of them were purchased off the streets from other criminals.
I recently spoke to a gun store manager and the effectiveness of the FBI background checks. He told me that at his gun shop, it’s rare that a background check comes back flagged and banning the sale of the firearm. He’s had a couple of background checks come back identifying the purchaser as a convicted felon.
One of those instances turned out to be a case of mistaken identity where the FBI confused the purchaser with someone else of the same name.The gun store owner also told me that several of his customers used their legally purchased gun to stop home intruders or from being mugged out in public. He added that to the best of his knowledge, none of the guns he’s sold have been used to commit a crime. When I asked him how he felt about gun control and universal background checks, he told me that he believed they were illegal intrusions on our Second Amendment rights.
I spoke to another gun store operator and he said he thought background checks were good, but was not thrilled about many of the other gun control laws already in existence and those being pushed by Obama. He told me that as far as stopping crimes, criminals don’t usually walk into a gun store to buy a gun they plan on using in a crime and that it’s really easy for criminals to get their hands on guns from other sources. The bottom line is that most gun control laws have little to no effect on preventing crimes and gun violence. Just look at the high incidence of gun involved crimes committed in the cities and states that have the strictest gun control laws. Gun control laws only serve to make it harder for law abiding citizens to protect themselves and their families.
Americans need to stand up for their constitutional rights. We need to vote out every politician that wants to take those rights away from us and if Obama wants to take our guns away from us, then it’s time we take America away from him and return it to the nation it was!
A bombshell new report in the Wall Street Journal could rock the Obama administration to its foundations.
According to the report, President Obama’s National Security Agency has been eavesdropping on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for years. That alone might not be enough to cause an international incident, but the fact that many of Netanyahu’sconversations with U.S. lawmakers were caught up in the spying very well might spell the end of Obama’s presidency.
The reason for the spying? Obama was concerned that Netanyahu would strike a pre-emptive assault on Iranian nuclear facilities, thus ruining any chances of a deal. Once it became clear that wasn’t likely to happen, though, the NSA continued to spy on Netanyahu as he spoke to Congress about scrapping the deal through political means.
Obama was not unaware of how it would look if he was exposed as spying on Congress. Instead of barring the NSA from picking up these conversations, though – or at least refusing to read them – he chose a middle road that not even his most ardent defenders can spin. The compromise was that the NSA would spy, they would send relevant communications to Obama, and they would redact any criticism of his administration and block out the names of the lawmakers in question.
In January of last year, incidentally, Obama said he was going to stop spying on foreign leaders altogether. “The leaders of our close friends and allies deserve to know that if I want to know what they think about an issue, I’ll pick up the phone and call them rather than turning to surveillance.”
Over the last couple of years, many have wondered why Obama did not reach out to Netanyahu with regular talks; apparently he didn’t need to.
As said, this would have been a minor scandal – if a scandal at all – if the spying did not extend to Congress. When one senior U.S. official realized how badly the White House could be damaged by these revelations, he called it an “Oh sh**” moment, a phrase that will almost certainly live in infamy if this story plays out the way it should.
Hearing the story on Tuesday, Senator Ted Cruz said that the Obama administration “views Congress, Republicans, and sometimes even Democratic members of Congress as their enemy.” He went on to say, “At times, it seems like they view the American people as their enemy.”
Will this scandal bring Obama down the way Nixon was brought down by Watergate? Or will Obama get a yet another free pass to treat American law like yesterday’s news?