Skip to comments.Bachmann says FBI agents watched over her shoulder
Posted on 07/10/2012 12:58:20 PM PDT by bayouranger
Secret briefings by the FBI about its purge of counter-terror training documents and the identities of the outside experts who helped direct it have only heightened the concerns by some members of Congress that the agency is trading national security for political correctness.
Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., a member of the House Intelligence Committee, said that when she reviewed the documents that had been removed from the bureaus training program, she was observed by three to four FBI agents, the only other people in the room.
When Bachmann took notes, the agent sitting behind her would also write in his notebook, apparently keeping tabs on what she showed an interest in, she said.
While the Minnesota representative is barred by the FBIs confidentiality agreement from revealing what she saw in the documents, she said the briefings she received raise even more alarm bells that the agency is going too far to appease Muslim-American groups.
This is truly censorship by our government, the government purging itself of documents, Bachmann said. We are not only seeing documents purged. We are seeing trainers purged and we are seeing the FBI library purged.
The FBI began reviewing all of its counter-terror training materials last September in response to media reports describing controversial statements in documents and lectures, allegedly including the assertion that devout Muslims are more likely to become terrorists.
Islamic and Arab-American groups protested and demanded removal of all references they deemed to be anti-Islamic. Within days, the bureau launched a review to ensure all FBI training materials are factual and do not rely on stereotypes.
To lead its review, the bureau created a five-member advisory panel that includes three outside Islamic experts, whose identities the agency will not disclose publicly.
After six months, almost 900 pages of documents were removed from the curriculum. Those are the materials members of Congress have been reviewing, but cannot discuss.
Some, including Bachmann, have also been told the identities of the outside Islamic experts, but are prohibited from naming them publicly or describing anything about their backgrounds.
Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, who has reviewed the purged documents and briefed on the three Islamic experts, echoed Bachmanns assertion that legitimate training information has been scrapped by the agency.
I am shocked at the material that has been removed, that they thought was offensive or problematic, and remain concerned, said Gohmert, a member of the House Judiciary Committee.
Weve got material being removed more because of political correctness than in the interest of truth and properly educated justice officials. We are blinding our enforcement officers from the ability to see who the enemy actually is, he said.
Gohmert and other Republicans on the judiciary committee grilled FBI Director Robert Mueller last month, asking if the bureau had gone too far to appease Muslim groups as it rewrote its training program.
Political correctness had nothing to do with it, Mueller insisted during the committee hearing. I can say absolutely and with certainty that political correctness played no role in the efforts that I undertook to make certain that we give the best training to our personnel.
In response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) from The Washington Examiner, the FBI declined to name the three outside Islamic experts or provide any other information about them or their backgrounds.
Disclosing their names would be an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy that is not outweighed by the publics interest, the agency told the Examiner. A separate request for the purged training documents is still pending.
The FBIs claim of privacy for the three Islamic experts is ludicrous, said Chris Farrell, director of research at Judicial Watch, a non-partisan government watchdog group that is seeking the same documents.
Bureau officials acknowledge the Islamic experts played a critical role in revising its training program, yet they downplay any public interest in finding out who those people are, Farrell said.
If we are going to radically alter their agent training at the behest of a sort of secret group that they wont disclose, thats a pretty substantial, pretty novel event, said Farrell, whose organization has successfully sued the FBI over public documents on multiple occasions.
Who knows what those changes are? They do it in secret. That runs counter to basic accountability, he said.
FBI spokesman Christopher Allen said the bureau has not been overly secretive. Legislators can raise any concerns with the agencys congressional liaison, Allen said.
He also said there are legitimate reasons why the outside Islamic experts who aided the FBI would not want their names released, he said.
You wouldnt want that if you were one of them, he said. There is no secrecy here.
Mark Flatten is a member of the Examiner's special reporting team
Relax for now, Grover.
now that’s a scary image. just another reason I fear for my country.
Consider becoming a monthly donor.
It's easy, and with enough participants
we could eliminate FReepathons.
And the liberal Republicans picked Romney over Bachmann...What absolute idiots!!! It is not too late to announce her the nominee at the convention. She is absolutely spot on about Terror and so many other issues. I am so pissed off that I have been forced to vote for that repulsive jerk Romney when we could have had this perfect candidate. Man I am going to barf!!!! And the appeasers on here make me even more sick. No to Romney for God’s sake before it is too late. Bachmann NOW!!!
Yet Sandy Berg(l)er can stuff the crotch of his pants with secret Clinton documents and keep his security clearance, even though those documents are never seen again.
Homeland security thinks I am a potential terrorist because I believe the constitution means what it says and in particular the first, second and tenth amendment.
If my memory serves me correctly, none of the Sept 11 hijackers had a Christian name. The suicide bombers that almost sunk the USS Cole did not have Christian names. The suicide bombers that killed over 200 Marines in Lebanon 30 years ago in Beirut did not have Christian names.
These terrorists were from many different countries. Some spoke different languages. The one thing all had in common was their religion.
If you are a cop you go where the criminals are. You do not go where you think the criminals will not be.
Watch these two videos:
Fair warning - It’s blood boiling betrayal.
If her name was Sandy, they would have given her socks and underwear!
She could have won the nomination, but instead she hit Gov Perry with a kamikaze attack, and ended all hopes.
Lots of public records retention laws broken by the FBI purge, but nobody cares. And the privacy exemption claim is pure hogwash.
This @$$hat is gonna get us killed and he just doesn’t care!
She was my first choice with Cain and Santorum swapping second back and forth till Cain was out.
Bachman now? for what? Another term of congress? Hate to break it you down in your bunker but michelle bachmann is no longer running for president.
I should not have said perfect....what she did with Perry was desperate. However, she is way more put together and understands immigration, terror, and Obamacare more than most and for goodness sake WAY MORE than Romney.
michelle bachmann is no longer running for president.
As on now, NOBODY is running for Republican nominee...We have not announced officially our nominee so it can be anyone at this point. Romney is NOT the right person at this time. He is center left and we are a center right country. Dump Romney for Bachmann, Palin, West, even Perry. We luckily have the convention on our side!!!!!
That is not what ended it. She moved away from her focus on the economy and tried redefining herself as a social conservative. People lost interest in her at this point. The buzz she generated was solely due to her position on the economy. Her campaign staff blew it by taking the focus away from the economy.
Perhaps the convention will get interesting if there is enough restlessness
That is true. I hope there is some protesting....only to wake up the GOPe that we don’t want this jerk and for them to stop forcing him on us. Conservative only....Sheesh at least once in our lives. Most of the population did not vote for Reagan.....Most were not born or too young to vote. I was too young and many other folks were too....Everyone 44 years and younger never voted for Reagan.
Welcome to the Caliphate, USSA district.
Republicans chose the inventor of Romney-care to run against the inventor of Obama-care..
Instead of Bachmann, Newt, Cain, or even Perry.. or Paul..
Unless their is some serious hanky panky going on at the top of the party structure..
You know to hamstring any non approved candidates.. by various devices..
Myth Romney is a very strange candidate.. almost Juan McLaim like..
Heck I’ll never figure it out.. I’m not too smart.. I’m a REPUBLICAN...