Orlando Terror Update
Orlando Terrorist Worked at Company Hired by DHS to Transport Illegal Aliens
The Secrets of Benghazi Are Back in the News
Judicial Watch Sues Virginia Gov. McAuliffe Over Granting 206,000 Felons Voting Rights
The Intimidation Game: How the Left Is Silencing Free Speech
We were not completely surprised by some of the disturbing details emerging from the Islamist terrorist massacre in Orlando, Florida. In particular, we were already aware of the killer’s employer. Our Corruption Chronicles blog summed things up:
The ISIS terrorist who committed the worst mass shooting in U.S. history worked for a security company contracted by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to protect federal facilities nationwide and transport illegal immigrants apprehended in the southern border region. Earlier this month Judicial Watch launched an investigation into the Florida-based security firm, G4S, after breaking a story about illegal immigrants being quietly transported from the Mexican border to Phoenix and getting released without proper processing or court appearance documents.
G4S was contracted by DHS to drive the group of illegal aliens, classified as Other Than Mexican (OTM), from the Border Patrol’s Tucson Sector where they were in custody to a Phoenix bus station where they went their separate way. The OTMs were from Honduras, Colombia, El Salvador and Guatemala and Border Patrol officials told Judicial Watch they were in custody for a couple of days and ordered to call family members in the U.S. so they could purchase a bus ticket. Authorities didn’t bother checking the identity of the U.S. relatives or if they’re in the country legally, according to a Border Patrol official directly involved in the matter.
Judicial Watch was on the scene when several vanloads of OTMs arrived at the Phoenix Greyhound station on Buckeye Road just a few days ago. A photo accompanying our story shows one of the uniformed G4S guards that drove a vanload of OTMs from Tucson to Phoenix earlier this month. G4S claims to be the world’s leading security solutions group with operations in more than 100 countries and 610,000 employees. G4S has more than 50,000 employees in the U.S. and its domestic headquarters is in Jupiter, Florida. Judicial Watch has filed a number of public records requests to get more information involving the arrangement between G4S and the government, specifically the transport of illegal immigrants from the Mexican border to other parts of the country.
The investigation will expand to include documents and information pertinent to Omar Mir Seddique Mateen, an Afghan-American with two firearms licenses and a security officer license. Early Sunday morning the veteran G4S security guard carried out the savage attack in an Orlando nightclub, killing 49 and injuring dozens of others. A multitude of media reports have confirmed that Mateen worked for G4S for nearly a decade even though he had been investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for terrorist ties. In one Florida newspaper report the security company confirms that Mateen has been a security guard, with a firearms license, since September 10, 2007. A former co-worker told another Florida media outlet that Mateen regularly made threats of violence and that he was an angry, loud, profane man who used slurs for gay people, blacks, Jews and women.
In 2013 Mateen was investigated by the FBI for terrorism ties and his connections to an American named Moner Mohammad Abu-Salha who carried out a suicide bombing in Syria. Both men are from the Ft. Pierce area in Florida’s so-called “Treasure Coast.” The federal probe didn’t seem to impact Mateen’s work at G4S however, because there was no disruption in his employment, even after he openly praised ISIS.
This is astounding considering that the agency created after 9/11 to prevent another terrorist attack has a $234 million contract with G4S to provide security services for a number of federal agencies, including the nation’s nuclear facilities and the departments of Labor, Justice, Energy, State as well as the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Ironically, the government’s contract with G4S stipulates that the company helps identify “suspected terrorists” trying to enter the U.S. and helps the feds with emergency responses to terror threats.
We will pursue this vigorously, as the Obama administration is too often inept, to put it charitably, in protecting Americans from Islamic terrorists.
We took a media inquiry from a Breitbart.com reporter this week asking us about an important Obama administration Benghazi scandal document that we revealed last year. The reporter’s focus was a Defense Intelligence Agency report, which revealed that the opposition in Syria was driven by several groups, including the precursor to ISIS — al Qaeda in Iraq. The intelligence document stated that the growing sectarian direction of the war would have dire consequences for Iraq, which included the “grave danger” of the rise of ISIS:
The deterioration of the situation has dire consequences on the Iraqi situation and are as follows:
This creates the ideal atmosphere for AQI [al Qaeda Iraq] to return to its old pockets in Mosul and Ramadi, and will provide a renewed momentum under the presumption of unifying the jihad among Sunni Iraq and Syria, and the rest of the Sunnis in the Arab world against what it considers one enemy, the dissenters. ISI could also declare an Islamic state through its union with other terrorist organizations in Iraq and Syria, which will create grave danger in regards to unifying Iraq and the protection of its territory.
Well the Breitbart inquiry led to this blockbuster story, “Hillary Clinton Received Secret Memo Stating Obama Admin ‘Support’ for ISIS”. The Brietbart piece reported, “Hillary Clinton received a classified intelligence report stating that the Obama administration was actively supporting Al Qaeda in Iraq, the terrorist group that became the Islamic State.” Breitbart further reported:
The memo made clear that Al Qaeda in Iraq was speaking through Muhammad Al Adnani, who is now the senior spokesman for the Islamic State, also known as ISIS. Western and Gulf states were supporting the terrorist group to try to overthrow Syrian dictator Bashar al Assad, who was being propped up by the Russians, Iranians, and Chinese.
The story quoted JW’s Chris Farrell, the former Army counterintelligence officer who heads our investigations team:
“The document is an IAR, an intelligence information report,” said Christopher J. Farrell, who serves on the board of directors of Judicial Watch, which obtained the document. “It is produced by somebody within the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA). It is reporting from the field by an intelligence agent” who could be a U.S. government agent, a defense attaché, or a source.
“It’s a report from the field back to headquarters with some intelligence that somebody is willing to bet their career on,” Farrell said.
Farrell confirmed that the report was sent to Clinton’s office, based on the recipient marking “RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHINGTON DC.”
I always thought it deserved more attention that the Obama administration knew three months before the presidential election in November 2012 that the Islamists planned to establish a caliphate in Iraq.
Well, our educational work got more attention thanks to a national debate started by a tweet by Donald Trump:
An: Media fell all over themselves criticizing what DonaldTrump “may have insinuated about @POTUS.” But he’s right: https://t.co/bIIdYtvZYw
The liberal media and the DC establishment went into frenzied overdrive to defend President Obama, calling Trump’s claim “bizarre” and “a conspiracy theory.” Their argument isn’t with Donald Trump but with the Obama administration, whose intelligence apparatus produced a document that said the “West” was, once again, supporting al Qaeda elements as it tried to oust the Syrian regime. Ret. Gen. Mike Flynn, who ran the DIA for a time under Obama, isn’t backing away from his agency’s conclusion, per The Washington Post:
Retired Army Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, then-director of the DIA, said that it was “written by a professional intelligence officer with DIA and . . . I stand by its accuracy.”
Flynn, who has advised Trump on foreign policy and has been rumored in some news outlets as a potential running mate, said in an email that the information in the cable was “accurate and it was very timely but it didn’t meet the political narrative at the time — especially reports such as the one in the Breitbart News article. AQ was never on the run, then or now.”
By withdrawing from Iraq in 2011, Flynn said, “this administration decided, for purely political reasons not to sustain our victory over AQI and therefore we now face an even stronger global jihad movement of radical Islamists.”
It is amazing how JW’s work continues to reverberate! By the way, our original press release revealing the DIA document had many other revelations worth revisiting. You can view and, importantly, share the revelations by clicking here.
Election integrity is under sustained assault by the Left, which wants to be able to steal elections to grab and maintain power. Judicial Watch is front and center in protecting our election systems through our Election Integrity Project. As part of our efforts, this week we filed a lawsuit on behalf of several Virginia voters against Governor Terry McAuliffe, and other commonwealth officials, over McAuliffe’s executive order that attempts to restore voting rights to about 206,000 convicted felons.
In the lawsuit filed in the Circuit Court of Bedford County, VA, we requested an injunction preventing the enforcement of (Walker et al. v. McAuliffe et al. (No. CL16000358-00)).
On April 22, 2016, McAuliffe signed an executive order titled “Order for Restoration of Rights.” McAuliffe reportedly plans to sign similar orders granting voting rights to groups of felons on a monthly basis.
Our lawsuit states:
Plaintiffs are registered voters in the Commonwealth of Virginia. As a result of Defendants’ unlawful actions, 206,000 felons who, by law, should be ineligible to vote, are being, and will be, registered and permitted to vote. Unless an injunction is granted, Plaintiffs lawful votes will be cancelled out, and their voting power will be diluted, by votes cast by individuals who are not eligible to vote under Virginia’s laws and Constitution.
Robert Popper, director of Judicial Watch’s Election Integrity Project, is Judicial Watch’s lead attorney on the lawsuit and lead counsel for the plaintiffs. Popper was formerly deputy chief of the Voting Section of the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department. Rick Boyer of the Boyer Law Firm in Lynchburg, VA, is serving as Judicial Watch’s local counsel for the plaintiffs.
We are arguing that this blanket restoration of rights to felons violates “provisions of the Virginia Constitution mandating that voting rights may only be restored on an individual basis, following a particular, individualized review and a finding of sufficient grounds for restoring such rights.”
Judicial Watch’s clients allege that their votes and the lawful votes of other Virginians will be cancelled out or diminished by felons who are not eligible to vote under Virginia’s laws and constitution. Further, these illegitimate votes may affect the 2016 presidential election:
The Executive Order provided that all felons who have completed their sentences by April 22, 2016 … shall have their voting rights immediately restored. As a result, these felons are currently able to register to vote by mail; online; through the Virginia Department of Elections, Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles, Virginia Public Libraries, and state government offices providing government assistance; and in voter registration drives. Felons who register to vote pursuant to the Executive Order will be eligible to vote in the November 8, 2016 general election in Virginia.
The lawsuit seeks a preliminary injunction to ensure the felons do not appear on Virginia’s voting rolls as eligible voters.
Back in January 2010, Mark E. Rubin, former counsel to then-Governor Tim Kaine, wrote to the American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia: “A blanket restoration of voting rights [to Virginian convicted felons] within the context of current Virginia law would not be proper.”
In May 2013, then-Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli issued a memorandum titled “Report of the Attorney General’s Rights Restoration Advisory Committee.” The report concluded “[t]he Governor cannot institute by executive order an automatic, self-executing restoration of rights for all convicted felons in the Commonwealth of Virginia.”
The bottom line is that this executive order is outside of the law and undermines free and fair elections. Voters in Virginia will see their legal votes erased and diminished by the hundreds of thousands of felons unleashed on the election system by Gov. McAuliffe.
That’s the title of a new book that will reach stores next week. The author is Kimberley Strassel, a member of the Wall Street Journal editorial board and author of its acclaimed “Potomac Watch” column. She has writes often about Judicial Watch, and her book generously covers our work exposing Obama’s continuing IRS abuse scandal. You can pre-order Ms. Strassel’s book here.