Monday, August 31, 2009

False Flag: "The victor will not be asked whether he told the truth." -- the 70th Anniversary of the "Gleiwitz Incident"

The Gleiwitz radio tower as it appears today.

False flag operations are covert operations conducted by governments, corporations, or other organizations which are designed to deceive the public in such a way that the operations appear as though they are being carried out by other entities. The name is derived from the military concept of flying false colors; that is, flying the flag of a country other than one's own. False flag operations are not limited to war and counter-insurgency operations, and have been used in peace-time. -- Wikipedia.

Seventy years ago today, the Polish Army attacked the German radio station Sender Gleiwitz in what was at the time Gleiwitz, Upper Silesia.

Except, they didn't.

The Gleiwitz incident was a staged attack by Nazi forces posing as Poles on 31 August 1939 on the eve of World War II in Europe. Ironically, the radio station (and much of what was then Germany) is now in Poland, and Gleiwitz is now calledn Gliwice. So much for that big idea of Hitler's, "Lebensraum" ("living space").

Sender Gleiwitz in 1939. The old building in Funkstrasse with two transmitter masts still in place.

This provocation was the best known of several actions in Operation Himmler, an SS project to create the appearance of Polish aggression against Germany, which they attempted to use to justify the subsequent invasion of Poland.

Much of what is known about the Gleiwitz incident comes from the sworn affidavit of Alfred Naujocks at the Nuremberg Trials. In his testimony, he states that he organized the incident under orders from Reinhard Heydrich and Heinrich Müller, the chief of the Gestapo. On the night of August 31, 1939, a small group of German operatives, dressed in Polish uniforms and led by Naujocks[2] seized the Gleiwitz station and broadcast a short anti-German message in Polish (sources vary on the content on the message). The Germans' goal was to make the attack and the broadcast look like the work of anti-German Polish saboteurs. In order to make the attack seem more convincing, the Germans brought in Franciszek Honiok, a German Silesian known for sympathizing with the Poles, who had been arrested the previous day by the Gestapo. Honiok was dressed to look like a saboteur; then killed by lethal injection, given gunshot wounds, and left dead at the scene, so that he appeared to have been killed while attacking the station. His corpse was subsequently presented as proof of the attack to the police and press. In addition to Honiok, several other convicts from the Dachau concentration camp[2] were kept available for this purpose. The Germans referred to them by the code phrase "Konserve" ("canned goods"). For this reason, some sources incorrectly refer to the incident as "Operation Canned Goods."

The Gleiwitz incident was a part of a larger operation, carried out by Abwehr and SS forces. At the same time as the Gleiwitz attack, there were other incidents orchestrated by Germany along the Polish-German border, such as house torching in the Polish Corridor and spurious propaganda output. The entire project, dubbed Operation Himmler and comprising 21 incidents in all, was intended to give the appearance of Polish aggression against Germany. For months prior to the 1939 invasion, German newspapers and politicians like Adolf Hitler accused Polish authorities of organizing or tolerating violent ethnic cleansing of ethnic Germans living in Poland.

On the day following the Gleiwitz attack, 1 September 1939, Germany launched the Fall Weiss operation — the invasion of Poland — initiating World War II in Europe. On the same day, in a speech in the Reichstag, Adolf Hitler cited the 21 border incidents, with three of them called very serious, as justification for Germany's "defensive" action against Poland. Just a few days earlier, on 22 August, he told his generals "I shall give a propaganda reason for starting the war; whether it is plausible or not. The victor will not be asked whether he told the truth."

American correspondents were summoned to the scene next day, but no neutral parties were allowed to investigate the incident in detail and the international public was skeptical of the German version of the incident. A few days after the Gleiwitz incident, the international public and press realized that the huge scale of the German "defensive action" meant the invasion had to have been planned months in advance. -- Wikipedia.

"I shall give a propaganda reason for starting the war; whether it is plausible or not. The victor will not be asked whether he told the truth."

History never repeats exactly. Still, most tyrants think alike.

Caveat Civis.

Let the citizen beware.


Steven Thomma needs to seek treatment for acute conflation syndrome before his brain explodes.

"Many a wayward collectivist has come to grief when his acute conflation syndrome cross-circuited with his inbred cognitive dissonance and caused his brain to explode." -- "Congenital Mental Disorders of the American Leftist," Journal of the American Militia Medical Association, Vol LVI, No. 6, page 13.

"Conflation occurs when the identities of two or more individuals, concepts, or places, sharing some characteristics of one another, become confused until there seems to be only a single identity — the differences appear to become lost. In logic, the practice of treating two distinct concepts as if they were one does often produce error or misunderstanding — but not always — as a fusion of distinct subjects tends to obscure analysis of relationships which are emphasized by contrasts." -- Wikipedia.

Steven Thomma of McClatchy News Service has written another example of extreme conflation syndrome here entitled "Secret camps and guillotines? Groups make birthers look sane."

He rightly takes on disinformation loons like Ted Gunderson but then conflates Tittering Ted with organizations like Oathkeepers. Go to the link if you want to read the whole story. Here is the offensive portion to me:

In another ominous warning, a group called the Oathkeepers boasts that it wouldn't cooperate if the government orders dissidents locked up. "We will NOT obey any order to force American citizens into any form of detention camps under any pretext," the group says in its list of top principles. Oathkeepers is built around the idea that its members — active and retired military, police and firefighters — all have taken an oath to defend the Constitution, not the federal government. Whether inspired by the group or not, the message of loyalty to the Constitution has been heard in many of the angry protests in town hall meetings this summer against a proposed health care overhaul — often side by side with the suggestion that the health care proposal is unconstitutional.

In a story three days ago here, entitled "Anger toward Obama, government isn't just about health care," Thomma said this about Oathkeepers:

Also, a group of active and retired military, police and firefighters called Oathkeepers has stated that it "will not obey any order to force American citizens into any form of detention camps under any pretext." The group, which says it doesn't advocate violence or an overthrow of the government, met on the April 19 anniversary of the Revolutionary War battle of Lexington and Concord , and of the bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City . One of the keynote speakers that day, Richard Mack , summed up his thinking about the federal government on his Web site. "The greatest threat we face today is not terrorists," he said. "It is our own federal government. If America is conquered or ruined it will be from within, not a foreign enemy."

Now this is the Thomma official bio:

Steven Thomma
White House
E-mail Steven at

Steven Thomma covers the White House, his second assignment there since coming to Washington in 1987. He joined what was then the Knight-Ridder Washington bureau as a regional reporter for the St. Paul Pioneer Press and became the bureau's National Political Correspondent in 1994. He was assigned to cover the White House for the first time in 1997 and was named Chief Political Correspondent in 2001. He assumed his current White House duties in November 2008. He received the Aldo Beckman Award for distinguished White House coverage for his campaign work in 2000, and the National Press Club's award for best regional reporting in 1994. Before coming to Washington, he worked for the Pioneer Press in Minnesota, the Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette in Indiana and City News Bureau in Chicago.

Well, this business offended me so much that I wrote him a little response and copied it to Stewart Rhodes so Thomma could follow up and at least ACT like a reporter. Here it is:

Subject: You need to seek treatment for acute conflation syndrome.
Date: 8/31/2009 1:29:18 P.M. Central Daylight Time
From: GeorgeMason1776

Dear Steve,

While I share your derision for the disinformation peddlers such as Ted Gunderson, and have long publicly denounced the goofy rumors such as the guillotine canard, I wonder why it is, as a journalist, you wrote this in your latest story:

In another ominous warning, a group called the Oathkeepers boasts that it wouldn't cooperate if the government orders dissidents locked up. "We will NOT obey any order to force American citizens into any form of detention camps under any pretext," the group says in its list of top principles. Oathkeepers is built around the idea that its members — active and retired military, police and firefighters — all have taken an oath to defend the Constitution, not the federal government.

Why -- as a journalist, mind you -- is this an "ominous" warning? Presumably you have some personal interest in seeing that the First Amendment is upheld. The Oath is as old as the Republic and has sustained it, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights since that time. It is a reminder to our soldiers, police and office holders that they do not owe allegiance to a man or a regime -- or, indeed, that no one owes allegiance to them -- but to the idea of the Founders' government of limited powers -- to the rule of law, not the rule of man.

You might reflect upon the fact that the worst abuses of law have only occurred when the government, military and police have forgotten their oaths. The innocent Japanese who were herded up in World War II were done so by soldiers who forgot their oaths, ordered by politicians who forgot theirs' in the hysteria of the moment. The local and state policemen of the South who cracked heads and stood by grinning at Klan lynchings did so at the expense of violating their oaths. The shootings at Kent State University in 1970 happened because of a breakdown of command and control certainly, but it also was a failure of the Oath.

So how, as a journalist. is this "ominous" to you? It is my experience that people who are frightened by Oathkeepers fall into one of two categories. Either they have never taken an oath to a cause larger than themselves, and thus are bound only by their own cravenly self-interest, or they see the Oath as an obstacle to their own tyrannical desires. Do you fall in either of these categories? If not, then why do you see Oathkeepers as "ominous"?

If it was you who was being rounded up, for whatever alleged "just cause," would you want a soldier who was given those orders to remember his Oath or not? And remember, as a journalist, you are the most vulnerable of all God's creatures to tyrannical regimes. Regimes do not like the free press, even those who generally agree with them, for they still can ask inconvenient questions.

The PATRIOT Act (like the 1996 Counter-Terrorism Act before it) gives any President the ability to throw your butt in jail on the flimsiest of reasons without habeas corpus. And if you think that something even you would recognize as tyranny cannot come to America, you're whistling past the graveyard of history.

And when, not if, that time comes around on the wheel of history again, you'd better pray to the God of Abraham, Joseph, David and the Christ, that there are still men and women in this country who remember their Oaths and who keep them. For THAT will be the only thing that keeps you from a camp with a sign that says, "Arbeit Macht Frei."

To conflate Oathkeepers with loons such as Gunderson is not only intellectually dishonest, it is an offensive stench in the nostrils of those who value the truth. I note that you apparently didn't even try to interview Stewart Rhodes of Oathkeepers. Willing to take SPLC's word on him, are you? What kind of "journalism" is that? And gratuitously throwing in a reference in an earlier story to the Oklahoma City Bombing and linking it to Oathkeepers? Despicable. Absolutely despicable.

A "journalist," as defined in the dictionary, would never find someone who is determined to honor his Oath to be "ominous." I guess that makes you just another propaganda flack for a discredited, lying bunch of tyrant-wannabes.

I can see why McClatchy picked you to be a "White House correspondent." They like toothless, loyal lap dogs in D.C. Always have, always will.

Mike Vanderboegh
PO Box 926
Pinson, AL 35126

LATER: Thomma replies in one short sentence:

"The ominous thing was the threat of government camps."

To which I fired back:

Subject: To quote the Irishman in Braveheart, "Answer the fooking question(s)."
Date: 8/31/2009 2:12:20 P.M. Central Daylight Time
From: GeorgeMason1776


Why would you put the mention of Oathkeepers' meeting in Lexington Mass in the same breath with the OKC bombing?

Again, what is "ominous" about Oathkeepers "Ten orders we will not obey," only one of which mentions detention camps? And if Alcee Hastings has a bill providing for camps, then how is it paranoia for Oathkeepers to mention them? The idea is on the table. A liberal Democrat put it there. Now, do I believe in "detention camps" disinformation as pimped by Gunderson, et. al? Hell no, and neither does Oathkeepers. To insinuate that it does, or to call it "ominous" is dishonest. Stewart could have told you that, if you'd had the nads to ask him.

Finally, why DIDN'T you interview Stewart? Do you think that parroting SPLC's "expert opinions" is a reasonable facsimile of honest reportage? It isn't -- not by a country mile. SPLC has its critics from all across the political spectrum. Google "SPLC criticism" and see what pops up.

If you are looking for the one guy in academia who has actually studied things like the constitutional militia movement for 15 years or so, get Professor Robert Churchill's book To Shake Their Guns in the Tyrant's Face (University of Michigan Press, 2009). He criticizes SPLC and ADL for warping and conflating disparate facts into what he calls "The Narrative of 1995" and "the Second Brown Scare."

IF you are actually a reporter, you should try to get your facts right, and not be SPLC's pet parrot. For the undertone of their every screech is "send us more money!" Is that the deal? Did you take on the task of helping those professional liars raise money?

They've used and abused reporters before, you know. Ask around.

Mike Vanderboegh

STILL LATER: Thomma responds . . .

I didn't quote the Southern Poverty Law Center on the Oathkeepers. If you saw a version of my analysis that suggested I did, then that was edited in after the story left here. I only quoted the center on the Ted Gunderson talk about guillotines because it was an SPLC analyst who got a copy of that Gunderson report and heard him say it at a Florida conference.

If you think I was parroting the SPLC on Gunderson and do not think their reporting on his guillotine comments was accurate, please show me how I erred and we will correct that.

On the broader point of this story, the threat of goverment camps, I found no evidence anywhere that the government is preparing detention camps for dissidents, or that it might order people to lock up people in those camps.

To which I replied:

Subject: Re: May I suggest a way out of this conflation business for you?
Date: 8/31/2009 4:05:55 P.M. Central Daylight Time
From: GeorgeMason1776

Why don't you explore the subject of Oathkeepers? Do a story on them, all by themselves. Do an honest examination of the issues they raise. The toads at SPLC have slandered them and you have conflated them in the minds of your readers with loonies like Gunderson. Give Stewart a chance to respond. Are you that frightened of the truth that you will not explore it?

C'mon, the President has extended his vacation. You've got the time. Have you got the guts? You know. if you mix acute conflation syndrome with cognitive dissonance, your brain could explode of its own accord. A messy end, by all accounts. ;-)

Mike Vanderboegh

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Eric Holder and Barack Obama Invade Russia.

"Time and patience. Patience and time. The Grand Army is wounded, but is it mortally wounded? An apple should not be plucked while it's green. Patience and time." -- Marshal Kutuzov, War and Peace, 1956.

Napoleon's Retreat from Moscow.


Read this story from the Washington Post. My comments follow it.

Holder's Decision To Probe CIA Hints At a New Dynamic

Official Winning Many Battles

By Carrie Johnson and Anne E. Kornblut

Washington Post Staff Writers
Friday, August 28, 2009

About five weeks ago, faced with a crucial decision on how to react to brutal CIA interrogation practices, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. concluded that it would be all but impossible to follow President Obama's mandate to move forward, rather than investigate divisive episodes from the Bush "war on terror."

Holder notified the White House that he was reluctantly leaning toward naming a prosecutor to review whether laws had been broken during interrogations -- the very thing Obama had said he wanted to avoid. And the word Holder got back, according to people familiar with the conversations, was that the decision was up to him.

The back story to Monday's appointment of a career prosecutor to review CIA interrogation methods illustrates Holder's influence in the new administration and sheds light on the emerging and delicate relationship between the White House and the Justice Department. In this and other big battles, including the decision to release memos this year by Bush administration officials giving the green light to harsh interrogation tactics, Holder and his Justice Department have prevailed over strong objections from the CIA and the intelligence community. Holder hasn't won every one of those battles, but he has won many.

In this case, on a matter of civil liberties and national security, the victory signals a dynamic that could play out on a range of sensitive issues that will come to define the Obama administration and its differences from the Bush era, including the detention of terrorism suspects and the protection of state secrets.

Administrations dating at least to Richard M. Nixon's have grappled with the balance between political sensitivities in the White House and the independence of the attorney general, the nation's top law enforcement officer. During the Bush administration, the relationship was marked for years by charges of politicization.

This week, after Holder announced his decision to examine about 10 cases of alleged detainee abuse by CIA interrogators in overseas prisons, the White House said it was his prerogative. But the official accounts did not mention Holder's conversations with the White House, nor Obama's deep, if cautious, engagement with the issues.

"There are some things he recognizes are the attorney general's prerogative to do, but at the same time, it's not like he just says, 'Well, whatever he does, he'll do,' " a senior administration official said of the president. "He wants to make sure we take into account those decisions and take the appropriate steps within the White House to deal with them, particularly from the standpoint of making sure we maintain that very capable, robust counterterrorism capability."

Holder is still carving out his role in history, finding his comfort zone between such predecessors as Alberto R. Gonzales, widely considered to be too close to the Bush White House, and Janet Reno, who sometimes alienated President Bill Clinton and the FBI with her stubborn independence and her investigations of Cabinet members.

Holder's aides would not describe his thought process in the weeks leading to the announcement. But Holder himself acknowledged the seriousness of the move and its possible fallout this week, saying that he shared the president's conviction that backward-looking inquiries could fracture the country.

"As attorney general, my duty is to examine the facts and to follow the law," Holder said. "In this case, given all of the information currently available, it is clear to me that this review is the only responsible course of action for me to take."

For his part, Obama appears determined to enter relationships with his Cabinet members as a strategic participant. People who brief him say he is able to game out scenarios before the experts in the room, even on foreign policy, national security and other issues in which he had relatively little expertise before running for president.

Obama is approaching the issues as a game of "three-dimensional chess," said John O. Brennan, an assistant to the president for homeland security and counterterrorism. "It's not kinetic checkers. And I think the approach in the past was kinetic checkers. There are moves that are made on the chess board that really have implications, so the president is always looking at those dimensions of it."

The just-announced review by career prosecutor John H. Durham is being closely followed by the intelligence community for clues about whether it will remain fixed on the low-level CIA employees and contractors who may have stepped out of legal bounds. Once Durham starts digging, some analysts said, the veteran prosecutor could uncover evidence that leads him higher up the chain of command in an inquiry that grows broader than the what the Justice Department outlined Monday.

Former vice president Richard B. Cheney excoriated Obama and Holder this week, saying they were weakening protections for Americans.

"President Obama's decision to allow the Justice Department to investigate and possibly prosecute CIA personnel, and his decision to remove authority for interrogation from the CIA to the White House, serves as a reminder, if any were needed, of why so many Americans have doubts about this administration's ability to be responsible for our nation's security," Cheney said.

When he took over as attorney general after the resignation of Gonzales in late 2007, Michael B. Mukasey promptly reinstated guidelines that would bar the Bush White House and others in the executive branch from reaching out to most of the department's prosecutors. "The Department will advise the White House . . . only where it is important for the performance of the President's duties and where appropriate from a law enforcement perspective," Mukasey wrote.

Obama's advisers said he was not oblivious to the effect a criminal investigation into prisoner abuse cases would have, both on the intelligence officials it touches and on the overall political climate. He has talked privately about the effect the inquiry would have on the CIA, but he has drawn a clear line between the White House and the Justice Department on criminal investigations into detainee abuse, according to allies who repeatedly described his approach in a single phrase: "balancing act."

"The president is a very sophisticated thinker and understands the implications of these decisions and events, and wants to make sure that he is aware of what those repercussions might be on the workforce, and on the reputation and image of the United States," Brennan said in an interview.

"I think he is determined to make sure we are on the right course going ahead, but you cannot just ignore the past, especially when Congress is doing its inquiries and reviews and we're going to be facing these issues as a result of court cases, as a result of congressional actions," Brennan said. "I think he is making sure that he makes the best decisions, and sometimes you cannot just wipe the slate clean. You have to deal with what the facts are, or you have to actually try to make sure you can ascertain the facts -- as opposed to the hyperbole that is out there."

Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) said Obama has "put a lot of thought" into how to balance security and civil liberties.

"I think he is very much aware that this area has been something of a constitutional teeter-totter," said Wyden, a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.

Yet Wyden, who spoke recently with CIA Director Leon Panetta about the difficulties of the job, said morale and other problems facing the CIA are real.

"He knew this job wasn't going to be a walk in the park, and he's certainly seen that in the last couple of weeks," the senator said, but he added that the director did not plan to walk away, a possibility raised in some news reports. "Leon Panetta is not a quitter," Wyden said.

So there it is. Obama has just invaded bureaucratic Russia.

If we survive the Obama administration without a civil war, it will be because insiders within the permanent government -- people who remember their oaths or just men and women who are frightened at what might happen to the prospect of their pensions -- used leaks and calculated PR weapons of selective destruction to bring down the players, one by one.

For this reason we should celebrate the Obama Administration's decision to attack the CIA.

Remember in Tolstoy's War and Peace when Marshal Kutuzov, the Imperial Russian commander, gets down on his knees and thanks God when he learns that Napoleon is advancing into the Rodina, the Motherland? He knew then that it would be the Little Emperor's undoing. As indeed it proved to be. So too did Adolf Hitler make the same mistake.

Well boys and girls, Eric Holder, acting as Field Marshal for his Emperor Barack the First has, in bureaucratic terms, just invaded Russia. The race is now on between the spooks they have outraged to a critical mass, and the progression of their bad behavior in dealing with the rest of us. Which will it be? Discredit and debasement at the hands of committed people who have spent their entire careers undermining hostile regimes with both truth and lies? Or, failing that, risking their own deaths by attacking people they should have known would resist?

Personally, I hope that we don't have to shoot anybody in righteous self-defense. But we should continue to make ready to do so.

I'm sure that Eric Holder discounts that possibility as far-fetched. But if he's as smart as I think he is, his sleep will be now disturbed by fears about the serial exposure of all the past sins of himself and his master. Because they WILL become known. For they have invaded the Rodina, and the spooks will now be closing in on his flanks and rear, gnawing, biting, irritating, until they politically bleed him and his boss to death from a hundred little PR savageries.

From now on, as the headlines mount, it will be the spooks who inhabit Eric Holder's nightmares -- and those of his Emperor. They might make it out of the outraged Russia they have invaded, but their reputations and their political fortunes won't. Of course, wounded animals are the most dangerous when they are at bay.

Get ready.

Say a little prayer for the spooks. But get ready nonetheless.

And you know what? I might even put on the 1812 Overture when I get back from the gun show today. ;-)


Thanks for the tip, Officer Cheeks! "It ain't (America) no more, OK?" You know, I think he may be right.

"Whenever the legislators endeavor to take away and destroy the property of the people, or to reduce them to slavery under arbitrary power, they put themselves into a state of war with the people, who are thereupon absolved from any further obedience." -- John Locke.

Several folks forwarded this link to me. Hawk's comment was, "Couldn't believe this when I watched it...."

Go to the link and watch. Here's the beginning of the World Net Daily story about it.

My reaction is, you know, Officer Cheeks may be onto something. Of course, if he's right, that absolves us from any further obedience to him and his tyrannical superiors.


Town-hall clash! Cop vs. Obama 'Joker' poster

Officer threatens arrest: This ain't America no more

Posted: August 28, 2009

10:57 pm Eastern

By Drew Zahn

"This used to be America," argued a protester outside a health-care town hall meeting in Reston, Va., after a police officer threatened him with arrest for holding up a sign with a picture critical of Barack Obama.

The officer's response?

"It ain't no more, OK?"

A video of the town hall held earlier this week by Rep. Jim Moran, D-Va., shows an unnamed protester standing on school grounds carrying a sign that read "Organizing for National Socialist Health Care– The Final Solution" and depicted Barack Obama in the Joker's makeup.

Officer Wesley Cheeks Jr. then told the protester that even though others were holding signs, his sign was unacceptable because of the depiction of Obama.
"But you got this with a picture," Cheeks said, explaining why the protester was being singled out from the others. "That's the difference. This has got a picture on it. That don't have a picture on it.

"Sir, leave the picture down," the officer said. "If you put the picture back up, you'll be charged with trespassing."

Video of the exchange can be seen below:
The protester continued the argument, wondering how his presence among hundreds of others at the town hall meeting could be deemed trespassing.

The officer answered, "If I told you once to take it down and you put it back up, I can charge you with whatever I want to charge you with."

The argument continued until the officer walked away.

"This used to be America," said the protester.

"It ain't no more, OK?" answered Cheeks.

"Duty": An active duty Marine Corps officer says -- "Honor Your Oath!"

"Any other option would be a dereliction of duty."

U.S. Marine Corps Capt. Lance Day, with Alpha Company, 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, gives the Oath of Enlistment to several Marines under his command Aug. 9, 2009, during a reenlistment ceremony at the company's forward operating base in the Nawa district of Helmand Province, Afghanistan. (DoD photo by Lance Cpl. Jeremy Harris, U.S. Marine Corps/Released)

A tip of the boonie hat to Jeff for forwarding this. He writes in forward:

This was written by an active duty Marine Corps officer who is a good friend of mine. He asked me to send this around (if he does it himself, he'll probably get a ration for it) so I'm sending this to you for consideration. If you think it is good enough, please post it on your site for others to read.

Thank you.

For Liberty,

It is certainly "good enough." I am honored to post it here. I did write back and ask Jeff about his use of the word "ration." His reply:

"I apologize for the slang - I'm a retired Navy officer and that word 'ration' is usually followed by 'of shit' - meaning his superiors would give him a hard time if they found out he was the author of this."

Actually, after he explained it, I remembered I knew that once upon a time. Must be getting old and brain dead.


Honor Your Oath!

An Open Letter to the Servicemembers of these united States

Written by an American Servicemember

“Duty, then is the sublimest word in our language. Do your duty in all things. You cannot do more, you should never wish to do less.” - General Robert E. Lee

Every oath administered at every enlistment, commissioning, and promotion across all branches of military service begins with the individual swearing or affirming to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States of America against all enemies foreign and domestic and ... [to] bear true faith and allegiance to the same.” Should our country and government fall under attack from foreign armies, there is no question that we will defend this country and our Constitution to our last. But what should be the proper course of action for the servicemembers of these united States when our Constitution is threatened from within, by those who themselves have taken a nearly identical solemn oath to support and defend (or preserve, protect, and defend in the case of the President) the very document they usurp? The answer to this quotidian question, it would seem, is not self-evident when one considers the near silence of our military personnel.

When elected officials, regardless of political affiliation, whether Representative, Senator, or President, repeatedly defy the Constitution by legislating on and regulating all aspects of American life, commerce, privacy, and health in direct defiance of the limited scope to which the Constitution binds them (see Article I, Section 8), what recourse is available to the servicemembers bound by their oath? What options remain when repeated written and oral petitions for redress of grievances addressed to these officials are answered only by repeated injury? How many petitions of this nature must be ignored before American servicemembers and civilians alike finally muster the courage to ask such questions?

Some may say that the servicemember’s duty is to maintain the status quo and remain silent, declaring that it would be unwise or unprofessional for military men and women to opine on political matters. However, these matters are not of a partisan nature. The nature of addressing unconstitutional advances, rather, is that of a servicemember fulfilling his sworn duty and at stake is the nature of the relationship between the federal government and the people and States.

It is also perhaps not surprising that our servicemembers largely have remained silent considering the dearth of education pertaining to the Constitution military personnel and Americans at large receive. Is this willfully negligent or is it another effort to abstain from appearing partisan? Is this negligence to teach the Constitution sufficient to relieve the servicemember of his sworn duty to support and defend our governing document? Certainly not! Ignorance in this case is a terrible shame but is no excuse. The ethical responsibility is on the individual servicemember to fully understand his sworn oath and it falls equally on his leadership to ensure comprehension of and adherence to the oath.

If the servicemember’s duty to support and defend the Constitution persists, again what recourse is available? Seeking to engage fellow servicemembers in discussions about Constitutional authority for current legislation has the potential of yielding sarcasm, indifference, or being labeled a domestic terrorist threat. The time has sadly arrived where servicemembers who have sworn to support and defend the Constitution are marginalized for voicing their concerns that our governing document is being metaphorically shredded.

So again, what remains for the servicemember who sincerely holds himself accountable to his oath when he finds his fellow servicemembers and elected officials to be guilty of neglecting their own? Should he remove himself from military service? Should he abandon his sworn duty because so many others find the implications of supporting that oath an uncomfortable or unacceptable option? Common sense and an obligation to honor tell us that to do so would be absurd. Rather, it is the duty of the individual servicemember to continually and emphatically advocate the long-forgotten notion that the federal government abide by the law of the land. To that end, let this letter serve as a call to all those who have raised their right hand, often invoking divine assistance, to reexamine their willingness to abide by their oath and to accept its full weight and responsibility. This inevitably will yield only two options: deciding to dutifully act in full accord with the oath, thereby truly supporting and defending the Constitution, or deciding to depart military service. Any other option would be a dereliction of duty.

August 7, 2009

Jim Ridgeway Succumbs to Hyper-Conflation Disease.

The Second Coming by William Butler Yeats.

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight; somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

James Ridgeway, formerly almost-intellectually-honest "leftie" columnist and film-maker.

Well, home after a long day and the second thing I see is this piece of hyper-conflationist crap from Jim Ridgeway entitled "Town Halls and the Resurgence of the Radical Right: How the GOP is fueling extremist paranoia."

Geeze-a-pete. Ridgeway, though a "leftie," used to be almost-intellectually-honest back in the 90s. I know because he interviewed me for an article that appeared in the May, 1997 issue of George Magazine about the private investigation into the Oklahoma City Bombing.

I guess I'd lost touch with Ridgeway almost as much as he's lost touch with reality over the years. I'm not going to reprint even a line of this conflationist crap here. If you want to read it go to the link. It's strictly hyper-conflationary Southern Preposterous Lie Center "Brown Scare" excrement.

Looking back to his last article in Mother Jones here, he says among other things:

"The militia movement, too, was an outgrowth of the posse movement."

And that, as Ridgeway understood at least in large part back in the 90s, was and is a damned lie.

Well, anyway, as I wrote in this comment to his article at Mother Jones, I guess this kind of conflationist stupidity can be expected as the rough beast, its time come round again, slouches now toward Washington, D.C. to be born.


Jim Ridgeway Succumbs to Hyper-Conflation Disease.

Submitted by Mike Vanderboegh on August 29, 2009 - 9:35pm.

Jim, give me a call, I can help you seek treatment for your hyper-conflation disease. You used to be more perceptive to the complexeties of reality, such as your May 1997 George Magazine article on the private investigation of the Oklahoma City Bombing.

Now, however, you seem to have bought into the Brown Scare notions of the Southern Preposterous Lie Center's "Narrative of 1995." (See Professor Robert Churchill's To Shake Their Guns in the Tyrant's Face, Univ. of Michigan Prss, 2009.)

Ironic, isn't it? SPLC has long embraced the Three Letter Agencies, with whom they have a identity of interest -- monetary interest -- going so far as to offer political cover to the ATF in the wake of the Good O' Boys Roundup scandal. Surely you remember when Alabama militiamen brought back photo and video evidence of the ATF's racist get-togethers in Tennessee, where they infamously issued "Nigger Hunting Licenses" and depicted, by means of "entertainment" in a skit the "birth of the black race" by removing a black baby doll from a watermelon. Oh, yeah, great stuff. And the SPLC went all the way down the line in a story in the NYT for a bunch of armed racist thugs acting under color of law because they had an incestuous symbiotic relationship with them.

Why is it, that when the Dems are in power, the FBI, ATF, and even CIA can do no wrong as far as the "left" is concerned but when the GOP is in power thy can do no right? At least the constitutional militias denounced Dubya's ill-named "PATRIOT Act." Indeed, Dubya in our eyes did almost nothing right. We understood, as did the Founders after the Alien and Sedition Act crisis, that you never pass a law that you aren't willing to see your own worst enemy enforce upon you.

Now the Obamanoids are going to enforce it not only on us but upon the likes of John Ashcroft. Delicious irony. He's got it coming.

But Jim, I thought I knew you better. I guess it is only to be expected in the run-up to the final breakdown of the country, that more and more people start looking at their opponents as cartoonish cardboard cut-outs consistent with their own world view rather than real people who are not "right wing nuts" but people who have genuine concerns about the distribution of more and more power to an over-reaching federal regime. This is a means of achieving psychological distance necessary to the final act of killing each other.

The most dangerous thing you can do -- and I mean do to yourself -- is to think of your fantasies about your enemies as fact. That has been a precursor to every civil war in the history of mankind. Only by treating each other as fellow Americans and human beings with genuine concerns can we perhaps back away from the brink of this violent showdown that is looming over whose world view will dominate the future of the country.

Write more about factual complexities, Jim, and less about cartoon images, and you will have fulfilled the mission statement of the Jim Ridgeway I knew in the 90s. Don't, and you're nothing more than a collectivist hack flogging the rest of the people toward the precipice. And the disaster will be total and mutual.

You know from experience that my anti-racist and anti-Nazi bona fides are better than SPLC's, and you also know that unlike them, I'm not trying to sell anything.

I'm just trying to avoid a civil war by getting people to understand that one is possible.

Mike Vanderboegh
The alleged leader of a merry band of Three Percenters.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

More Friesen court documents: "You don't have the half of it in this case."

Attorney Doug Friesen, the guy the ATF's "Officer Obie's" had to settle for compelling him to "pay fifty dollars and pick up the garbage" in order to protect their rotten document system. This after spending a million plus taxpayer dollars persecuting him over a period of six years.

Just received this over the transom:

Dear Mr. Vanderboegh,

An acquaintance called your Sipseystreetirregulars blog to my attention, in particular the hearing involving Federal District Judge Tim Leonard. You don't have the half of it in this case, and I'm going to send you what I have or know of.

One is a link to other public documents from the Friesen case, obtained from the Pacer system, posted by Joshua Prince.

The rest of what I'm sending you is largely information, because other documents pertinent to the NFRTR (a major aspect of the Friesen case) have not been released yet. Mr. Friesen has them and is getting ready to send them out. These documents are important because., e.g., the impact of the Motion in Limine on the NFRTR cannot be fully appreciated outside the context of these documents. The reasons are that these documents are a sample of NFRTR data pertinent to the case; that the technical examination of the STENs discloses that none of them fully match their NFRTR descriptions (a discrepancy in "overall length" between Mr. Friesen's STEN and its NFRTR description caused the trouble); and the Motion in Limine establishes that ATF has been aware of such problems since at least 1995, and that ATF, and the Inspectors General of the Departments of Justice and Treasury have been aware of it and continue to cover it up. The documents needed are, in particular:

1. The technical report by Len Savage, with photographs, of the descriptions of the 25 STENs registered on Form 2 by Charles Erb, none of which match their official NFRTR descriptions.

2. The technical report by FTB of its examination of the same 25 STENs.

3. The 25 "blue seal" certifications of the ATF's NFRTR. I have one example that Mr. Friesen sent me recently, but none of the others.

4. An analysis of the discrepancies between the 25 STENs that were physically examined, and ATF's descriptions of these same 25 STENs in the NFRTR.

Finally, you may not have listened to Mr. Friesen's interview about the case:

Our latest Talkin' to America interview features attorney Douglas Friesen - in two parts - and

I have no more information about the Friesen case other than the foregoing. Of course, there is a writeup and transcripts of the first Friesen trial that have been posted for some time on the NFAOA "Resources" page.

Best regards.

Threeper Travelogue Note: I will be at the Bessemer Gun Show today and part of tomorrow.

So there will be light posting ahead. I will be working the Bessemer gun show this weekend, trying to raise a little cash. I will however cut out early tomorrow to go watch my daughter Zoe play in a soccer game. Look for the green Sipsey Street sign and the fat old man with a cane scribbling on a note pad beside it.


PS to "Waco Jim" -- "Eat me."

Friday, August 28, 2009

"Groundhog Day": Why the ATF Folded in the Friesen Case.

"Groundhog Day." ATF's James P. Vann searches frantically for his "lost" documents.

"The only crack is from you to the secretary." -- Federal Judge Tim Leonard to U.S. Attorney Edward Kumiega.


I'm posting this priceless fly-on-the-wall look at the Friesen case that I've had for some time now, which as far as I know is not a court-sealed document. This is the first of a series of ATF-related documents I'm going to be posting here, although it is, for now, the only court document I have received over the transom.

Here's the lesson I take from this.

The one thing the ATF cannot afford to look like is ineffectual, foolish and downright stupid. Yet that's exactly the fate that they deliberately tempted in this case and got caught. Why? Because in the end this was about protecting their secret documents. These documents, no matter what spin they put on them, are in the final analysis just rules, regulations, policies and testing procedures that ought to be in the public domain. They refuse to release tham because then they couldn't change the rules to suit themselves in whatever particular case they're running.

Yet the one thing these people cannot stand is being laughed at, and you can't read this without thinking of lying little boys caught stealing the chocolate-chip cookies with sticky brown goo smeared on their mouths and hands, crumbs on their shirt, and jaws working furiously to swallow the evidence before Daddy gets up out of the recliner to go and get the belt. This act of public outing, courtesy of Sipsey Street, strikes at the heart of their machismo, and they will want to kill somebody for it. But, as always, this is designed to get the attention of the reputed adults in the administration -- I mean, its not like they're going to show this transcript to their bosses in pride. What I'm trying to say to the bosses like Eric Holder is, "look, these are YOUR juvenile delinquents, only they have badges and guns and eventually somebody's going to get shot. DO something."

Still, when poor old Jimmy Vann just couldn't find his "lost" documents, I laughed so hard I almost peed myself. He used every excuse except the dog ate his homework. When they realized they would have to drop the case or reveal some of their precious documents, they cockroached, headed for the base boards and Friesen walked on a misdeamenor after they'd spent at least a million dollars and years of work trying to put him in federal prison with real criminals like MS-13.

Therefore, and tell me if I'm wrong, the real lesson here is that if you are indicted by the ATF for anything, just have your lawyers work it out to threaten the disclosure of one or more ATF "secret documents," and you're home free.

Am I wrong?

The fact that I have publicly distributed this, whether it turns out to be open source (as I believe it to be) or sealed, will likely frost the ATF's testicles. It is, in their minds, a subversive act. But sunlight is only feared by rats, cockroaches and out-of-control armed bureaucrats.

I hereby assert that there is NO ATF internal document that bears on testing, training, or procedures that shouldn't be posted in the Federal Register. None. The only way they have been able to get away with the shell game that they have for so long is that they hide their procedures from the public with the assistance of lazy judges and venal politicians.

You will note that in this case, Mr. Friesen was lucky enough to get both an honest and a tough judge, one who in the interest of justice was not afraid to challenge the federal Leviathan. David Olofson did not. Mr. Friesen, a lawyer himself, could also afford to hire the best defense attorneys. Mr. Olofson could not. Because of those circumstances, David Olofson is in prison and Doug Friesen is a free man. All because the ATF was able to prance around in the darkness in one case, and in the other, they ran from the light switch the judge threatened to flip.

Turn on the light, I say. For everybody. Let us see the ATF try to defend their secretive conduct in the light.

But for now, in this little corner of Sipsey Street, I have flipped that switch.

Enjoy, and pass it out far and wide -- especially to news reporters amd defense attorneys, for this, I believe, represents the Rosetta Stone which will break the ATF's illicit conduct in investigations and at trial. If, as is apparent, they cannot do their business in the light, then they shouldn't be doing it at all.

Mike Vanderboegh
The alleged leader of a merry band of Three Percenters

PS: And to the ATF, I say again, no more free Wacos, and that includes me. I know you're pissed, but don't do anything stupid. You know, like start a civil war. For if you come for me, a crippled old fat diabetic with a bad heart on disability, I will not go quietly. And how will you explain later that you had to kill me just because you didn't like what I put on the Internet? You could sue me, I suppose, but that would open you to discovery about so much more. I mean, really, if you have any questions, send me a letter. Gambit. Your move.

Note: The following document is a transcription of the original hard copy document. I will say up front that it did not come from Doug Friesen nor any of his defense attorneys. There may be minor errors of punctutation or spelling, but I have transcribed it completely and left nothing out. MBV.

In the United States District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma

United States of America, Plaintiff, vs. Larry Douglas Friesen, Defendant

Case No. CR-08-41-L

Transcript of In-Chambers Hearing had on March 23rd, 2009 before the Honorable Tim Leonard, U.S. District Judge, Presiding.


Mr. Edward Kumiega, U.S. Attorney's Office, 210 West Park Avenue, Suite 400, Oklahoma City, OK 73102, appearing on behalf of the United States of America

Mr. Mack Martin and Ms. Kendall Sykes, Martin Law office, 125 Park Avenue, Fifth Floor, Oklahoma City, OK 73102, appearing on behalf of the defendant.

(The following was had in chambers on March 23rd, 2009:)

THE COURT: The defendants have filed a motion to continue trial based upon the government's continued dilatory production of evidence.

Mr. Kumeiga, can you explain -- had you not received the Court's order saying that everything that would be turned over would be turned over by February 20th?


THE COURT: Had you not seen that?

MR. KUMIEGA: Yes, I have, your Honor.

THE COURT: It's my understanding that you've had this document in your possession since before the last trial.

MR. KUMIEGA: Which -- which document, your Honor?

THE COURT: From Birmingham Arms.

MR. KUMIEGA: We did not -- we had -- we had it in a corrupt file. Are you talking about the Birmingham --


MR. KUMIEGA: Yes. We had it, we never could -- we couldn't open it.

MR. VANN (James P. Vann, ATF): We had a reference to it, your Honor, in a corrupt file.

MR. KUMIEGA: We thought it was ---

THE COURT: But you had the actual document in your materials?

MR. KUMIEGA: Yes, we had -- we had a corrupt -- we couldn't open it, so we never thought about it. Yes, we had it.

THE COURT: So when did you think about it?

MR. KUMIEGA: When Mr. Martin asked us to go over everything again, we went back through the documents and gave it -- everybody went back through the documents and gave it -- everybody went back through the documents based on his letter, and they tried to open it up, and gave it to the intel analyst, intelligence analyst. she was lucky to open it up, and that's when we found -- it was just an investigatory tool. It's basically, we thought, just background information, not relevant at all, just thousands -- hundreds of thousands of sales by Birmingham. We found Friesen's name on 11.

THE COURT: You didn't look for any of this prior to the first trial?

MR. KUMIEGA: We couldn't open it up, so we just --

THE COURT: But you knew it was there?

MR. KUMIEGA: I didn't know it was there, but yes, it was there, we couldn't open it up and never thought it was important at all.

THE COURT: So, I mean, when did you think that it was important?

MR. KUMIEGA: We acted on his letter, and we went back to try to help Mr. Martin through his discovery letter, the discovery letter that was, I think, filed on -- that he sent to us on the 15th, I believe.

THE COURT: What, particularly, in that letter were you acting on?

MR. KUMIEGA: We just went through the old boxes looking for everything that he wanted, see if there was anything that we missed.

THE COURT: So what particularly in his letter did he -- did he ask for the Birmingham sales?

MR. KUMIEGA: No, no. Oh, no.

THE COURT: So how did that relate to his letter?

MR. KUMIEGA: We just went through everything again to make sure we're not missing anything. We went through the documents and gave it to him.

THE COURT: Shouldn't you have done that whether he wrote a letter or not?

MR. KUMIEGA: Probably, but we thought they were irrelevant, had nothing to do really with the case. That was the point. It's just information that basically was innocuous, we thought, and since the document couldn't open up, the file was corrupt, nobody thought about it. That's what happened.

THE COURT: so why, when you looked back and it was corrupt again, why did you even bother with it?

MR. KUMIEGA: They just passed it around and gave it to intel. I have no idea how the chronology of how the disk passed around. They gave it to a lady named Kirstin Liles in our office, and she opened up the document and then found that notation. But we were prompted by Mr. Martin's letter; that's why we did it.

THE COURT: What part of his letter?

MR. KUMIEGA: We just went through the box, your Honor.

THE COURT: No, but what part of his letter prompted going through that box? Tell me the paragraph.

MR. KUMIEGA: I'm looking, sir. when we were going to introduce all the other guns in the E series, we went back --

THE COURT: That didn't have anything to do with his letter.


THE COURT: What paragraph in his letter prompted you to go back through the Birmingham Arms?

MR. KUMIEGA: Judge, everybody -- we said, go back and find stuff, according to the letter.

THE COURT: But what part of the letter -- I don't see anything related to the sale of machine guns.

MR. KUMIEGA: "All investigative reports and photographs relating the E series of machine guns." That's where Birmingham Pistols had the E series of machine guns. That's what prompted us to go back and look through everything again. we didn't think it was -- had any relevance at all, your Honor. It was just -- it was just thousands and thousands of transactions between Davenport and everybody else in the machine gun community, or even outside the machine gun community. It's everybody that Davenport did, Davenport and Guy Walker. That's what -- that's why we went back, out of an abundance of caution, we were trying to satisfy his request, Judge. That's what happened.

THE COURT: Response, Ms. Sykes or Mr. Martin.

MR. MARTIN: Judge, Thursday we got this CD, and we couldn't open our copy. When you open it, it's -- it's in our motion. We got this one that we could open on Friday afternoon. And contrary to our motion -- let me say this: with the CD we got this printout and it has nine entries on it, that's related to Mr. Friesen. But contrary to what we put in our motion, after we were able to open this, after we received it Friday, after we had already filed our motion, the CD is like a computer, Judge, it has lots of subdirectories, a lot of different files in it. There is a file that has -- not the one they got these materials out of there's a file in there called Gun Query that has over 509,000 entries in it that is what I would call chocked full of exculpatory evidence.

THE COURT: What kind of exculpatory evidence?

MR. MARTIN: It's my belief, and I think the government -- the government indicated to us in a cell phone call last week that they now believe that Mr. Friesen, I guess from the conversations I had related to me from Ms. Sykes, that they now believe that Mr. Friesen obtained this firearm only in tube form. And this CD is chocked full of evidence that would absolutely contradict that assertion. We didn't find that until Saturday and we haven't had much chance to look at it all. We think there's some much more specific information in there that might be helpful to us, but there is no way we can go through 509,000 entries on just one file. I anticipate, I haven't done a complete search of this, but I would suspect there's close to a million entries on this CD, Judge. But if the government's position is that he received this as a Sten tube only, this thing is full of exculpatory evidence.


MR. MARTIN: I would like to -- if I present it to you, Judge,I would like to do it in camera ex parte. I mean, I've got documents I can show you, but I just don't think it would be appropriate --

THE COURT: Is that the basis of introduction of this, is to show that he purchased only a Sten tube?


THE COURT: But the document.


THE COURT: And so what basis, what foundation is that? Based on the price?

MR. KUMIEGA: Yes. Yes. From talking to Guy Walker, he said the $500 is basically a price for a tube, it's not for a machine gun.

MR. MARTIN: That's not what his 302 says you gave us, Ed.

MR. KUMIEGA: What did it say?

MR. MARTIN: It said $200.

MR. KUMIEGA: It doubled. It's $200 from Erb, and then he would sell it for retail. That's my understanding of --

MR. MARTIN: That's not what his 302 says. That's news to me again. That's other new information.

MS. SYKES: The 302 said he would sell them as fully put together machine guns for between 5 and $600. I don't know if that was Mr. Davenport or Mr. Walker.

MR. MARTIN: That was Mr. Davenport.

MS. SYKES: We don't have a statement from Mr. Walker on that, I don't believe.

MR. KUMIEGA: My understanding is they got the tube from Erb --

THE COURT: Mr. Walker was -- refresh my recollection.

MR. KUMIEGA: He was the owner of Birmingham Pistols. Mr. Davenport was the manager and he's the one that testified at trial.

MR. MARTIN: the information that has been provided, Judge is that they would sell Sten tubes for around $200, they would sell -- back in '96, and they would sell fully automatic firearms, from his 302 or ATF form, whatever they call it, for between 5 and $600, fully automatic weapons. That's the first time we've heard Sten tubes cost $500, is right now.

THE COURT: What does the 302 say, or the ATF's --

MR. KUMIEGA: I don't have it in front of me.

MR. MARTIN: I can get it in two minutes if you want me to, but it says exactly what I just told you.

THE COURT: Okay. What about the other issue relating to the -- as what Mr. Kumiega selectively culled out from the procedures and manuals of the ATF and --

MR. MARTIN: We've got nothing relating to the manuals, Judge. You mean the manuals that we talked about in that motion hearing the other day?


MR. MARTIN: We've basically been told we're not entitled to it, that we have no constitutional right to it. I responded via e-mail to him that --

THE COURT: I thought that the -- he offered to provide portions that his expert might testify about, about policies and procedures from memos or manuals or whatever, was my understanding. But has anything been provided to you?

MR. MARTIN: As relates to the manuals, no sir.

THE COURT: Even the part he offered to provide?

MR. MARTIN: Nothing.

MR. VANN: Your Honor, during the conversation what we said was we would produce some sections they thought was, or that --

THE COURT: Who is "they?"

MR. VANN: I'm sorry. That defense, if we could come to an agreement, that if they could narrow down the request for a particular time, a particular section we would be happy to provide it under protective order. We were informed that was not acceptable, they wanted full or nothing, and they would have the Court rule on whether or not they were entitled to any of it, at which point we said we're still willing to do this under protective order, and I explained that we thought under protective order how far that would go, during the conversation. That was rejected out of hand, and that was the end of the conversation. So we responded to the letter saying again, we're willing to discuss this, if you're going to do it just tell us which sections are applicable to this or what you want, and I was told we don't know what's in there, so we have to have the whole thing so we can look at things to determine whether or not we need anything. I said that's not acceptable, we can't hand you the whole manual. That's the whole point of this.

THE COURT: I think in my discussion in court I said something about filing a motion to compel by Monday if you couldn't get something worked out. We heard nothing, so I assumed everything was worked out.

MS. SYKES: May I respond to his --

THE COURT: And you said you're going to be out of town, but Ms. Sykes would take care of it, and she said Monday by five would be fine.

MS. SYKES: We didn't receive a response from the government until Tuesday. At that point I wasn't quite sure if we were going to file a motion to compel or not, and frankly, last week just going through all of the discovery, it was something I thought we could ask the Court to rule on at a later date. But as of Monday --

THE COURT: What would be a later date?

MS. SYKES: Well --

MR. MARTIN: Judge, one thing that happened is this: when I left town, contrary to my request, e-mails were sent to me and not to Ms. Sykes. I sent to the government four e-mails saying she's an attorney in this case, and she never got a lot of their e-mails. So I had to call them -- I had to e-mail them I don't know how many times and say -- well, I do know, four times -- and say, send your e-mails to Kendall, I'm not in the office. So if they sent them to me, she didn't see them. She got most of them Friday when I got back in town.

MS. SYKES: I did -- I --

THE COURT: So did you have a laptop with you?

MR. MARTIN: No, sir. I had a Blackberry and saw I got an e-mail from the government, but I couldn't open it up. So to the extent I could, I tried to forward what I could, but it wasn't that I was accessible with it all the time.

MS. SYKES: Your Honor --

THE COURT: Why didn't you send e-mails to Ms. Sykes?

MR. KUMIEGA: Judge, it -- it was either -- I don't know why. It was my secretary sending stuff out. We thought that when we sent it to Mack it gets forwarded to Kendall. We never --

THE COURT: Were you told to send it to Kendall?


THE COURT: So why didn't you?

MR. KUMIEGA: I don't remember. It just fell through the cracks.

THE COURT: The only crack is from you to the secretary.

MR. KUMIEGA: Yes. Yes, Judge. I'm busy getting prepared for a case. We thought we sent everything to Mr. Martin, we didn't hear back from Kendall. We thought everything was -- we had our -- our position was on Thursday --

THE COURT: So Mr. Martin did tell you to send everything to Kendall?

MR. KUMIEGA: Yes. He --

THE COURT: You knew he was out of the office?


THE COURT: You didn't send it to Kendall?

MR. KUMIEGA: I didn't -- I thought we did. I -- no, we did not send it to Kendall.

MR. VANN: If I may, he responded with a cc to Kendall Sykes on it. Here's the e-mail to Linette saying we should deal with her in the future. So as of within minutes of getting our response on the 17th, Ms. Sykes knew that we had sent the response. She has it right here. We've got the forwarding of our original saying in the future please copy her on all these emails. So that letter which is so important, she was notified within minutes of getting it. So -- now, if there's no attachment, I apologize for that. We could at that point have followed up, but we received --

THE COURT: But after being requested, you didn't ever send anything directly to Ms. Sykes?

MR. KUMIEGA: We thought it was done. It's my mistake. We thought she had it.

MR. MARTIN: And that's not the only thing they didn't send to her, Judge. They still continued to send things to me. And you know -- anyway. So --

MS. SYKES: Your Honor, may I just briefly respond to Mr. Vann's comments about -- I'm the one that actually went and met with the government after our Daubert hearing, I think it was on Thursday, two Thursdays ago. And basically, he's saying our letter, our discovery letter, we're asking for too broad of categories. And we -- just also for the record, we had asked for any ATF manuals relating to the compliance inspections prior to their expert testifying at the Daubert hearing. We already believed they were very relevant to the credibility of the inspectors that conducted the compliance inspection in this case.

With that said, on the one hand, he's saying our requests are way too broad, narrow down to the specific sections you want. But we don't -- defense does not know what sections are in that. So it's like, you're asking for too much, but I can't give you the manuals, you can indicate specifically what you want. And it was my position during the meeting that we should be able to observe the entire procedure manual, or whatever handbooks they have under a protective order, and then if the judge wanted to rule only specifics things were relevant, then that's different. But we were unable to narrow our request simply because everything is so secretive and protective, for whatever reason. And so that was why -- I'm not saying he's completely misrepresenting our conversation, but I'm just explaining why our position is we need to see the whole manual, even under a protective order.

THE COURT: Which manual?

MS. SYKES: Well, we don't know for sure which ones, but we do know from the Daubert hearing there's at least two. There's an operations handbook, or something the ATF I guess sends out to the field, I don't know exactly who they send it to, but I think -- how do you say Strotheide?

MR. KUMIEGA: Strawhide (phonetic).

MS. SYKES: Strotheide.

THE COURT: Are you talking about the civil part of the ATF or the criminal part?

MS. SYKES: Well, it would be civil. I don't know what -- I don't know if they --

THE COURT: Dealing with compliance?

MS. SYKES: Yes, your Honor. Solely dealing with the compliance instructions and the policies thereto. And there was two documents referred to in the Daubert hearing by Mr. Strotheide. One was some sort of operations manual, and one was some ATF handbook. And he had said that they have -- I'm assuming they get updated handbooks yearly or every few years, because he said there have been some changes. Those are the only two we know of for sure.

THE COURT: Okay, On that subject -- what's his name?

MR. KUMIEGA: Strotheide.

THE COURT: Strotheide. If the Court -- the Court had indicated that Mr. Strotheide night only be used in a rebuttal capacity, if the -- if I don't allow him to testify, does that take care of the problem with the manuals?

MS. SYKES: It takes care of one aspect, but no, your Honor. It's our position that the credibility of Inspectors Rowden and McGrew in this case is paramount to the government's -- they are basically saying that the inspectors are well-qualified in their job, came out to Mr. Friesen's and conduct a compliance inspection on February 17, I think or 19th, 2003, and are so well-acclimated to their job and so good at what they do that the jury can trust that they did not see E683, and we believe that these procedure manuals will go to their credibility.


MS. SYKES: Well, not seeing the manuals it's hard to say for sure, but if, for instance, it kind of --

THE COURT: I mean, if the testimony is they did not see this one thing, that doesn't have anything to do with the manuals, does it?

MS. SYKES: Well, it could. It depends on what's in the manuals. We have always --

THE COURT: Thy either saw it or they didn't see it.

MS. SYKES: Well, we know that a lot of the serial numbers are very hard to see. In fact, even the government when they went out and rounded up a lot of these serial numbers to take pictures in the first trial had to use chalk and different things to even see them.

THE COURT: What does that have to do with the manuals?

MS. SYKES: Well, not knowing what's in the manuals, I'm not for sure, but what I suspect is that there might be procedures about if -- before you determine that somebody is in possession of an illegally -- an unregistered machine gun, of which there is huge consequences for that firearms owner, that maybe they have procedures they are supposed to follow to ensure before they write that down that -- I mean, we at the trial hypothesized maybe a penlight, a magnifying glass, maybe --

THE COURT: So that's the one area you need to see?

MS. SYKES: That would be of great interest. Anything bearing on procedures to ensure that they can check on their list. We definitely, based on our procedures and our qualifications, know that there is not a serial number of there's the wrong serial number on this particular firearm.

THE COURT: So if the Court reviewed the manuals in camera in that one area, and provided you any -- or turned over to you any sections that's related to that kind of procedure --

MS. SYKES: I would -- I would be agreeable. We certainly trust the Court in that regard. Our problem is just having to rely on the government giving us what they thought was relevant.

THE COURT: I understand.

MS. SYKES: I don't know what Mack thinks about it.

MR. MARTIN: That would be fine, judge.

MR. KUMIEGA: Judge, just for a matter of the record, Mr. Friesen couldn't find the serial number himself.

THE COURT: We're trying to get --

MS. SYKES: For the record --

THE COURT: Any problem with that?

MR. VANN: Your Honor, I have people at headquarters who are trying to find the manual that was applicable during that time. They've been searching for it, looking for it. As soon as I have it -- I'll call this morning to see if they've located it, they were trying last week to find that. I was told by them that, by somebody who is familiar with the manual during that time, they were extremely general. And I asked those questions, such as were there policies for exam and using penlights.

THE COURT: So if I continue the trial, will they find it the Friday before trial?

MR. VANN: Your Honor, we were put on notice on the 10th, and we discussed it on the 12th, and I had -- by the 12th, I had already contacted ATF and was searching for these documents. Within minutes of hearing from Ed on this issue, I had -- I was placing calls trying to locate this stuff so we could be responsive. I will tell you that (unintelligible) doesn't have it, but that our field ops may, and they were presently working, looking for it, and they were searching old files and everything else.

Those manuals were so generic and so general and they were superseded every year, so finding it, they informed me, would be a very difficult task, but they were actively looking for it. So they may have it now, or they may be able to tell me now that it doesn't exist, they don't have it. But I was told -- I'll represent to the Court as soon as I hear something I will report it, but I will tell you now that it will be a few pages long, and it will contain nothing regarding penlights or chalk.

THE COURT: Why don't you furnish that in camera. And as far as all of the other policies and procedures, if your expert, if the Court allows him to testify, even in rebuttal, anything that he refers to would need to be turned over under protective order in complete, not just portions, but the full documents. so you can make that decision whether you put him on or not.

MR. VANN: Your Honor, may I just ask for clarification? They are requesting any ATF document ever in existence, we're talking about during the time of the inspection?

THE COURT: That's right.

MR. VANN: Okay. Fine.

THE COURT: And that's what -- he referred to some policies.

MS. SYKES: Right.

MR. MARTIN: We've got the transcript, we can go to exactly what he referred to, and it will be easy to figure out.

MR. VANN: That's fine.

THE COURT: And it would need to be in toto under protective order.

MR. VANN: Yes, your Honor.

THE COURT: If you don't put him on, that's not an issue.

MS. SYKES: Judge, are you requesting that the government provide you a complete copy for you to look through as far as compliance inspectors go?


MS. SYKES: Thank you, Judge.

THE COURT: Anything that relates to what you just raised or other issues that I see as we're in the trial that you didn't specifically mention.

MS. SYKES: Thank you.

MR. VANN: For the inspectors or just put on the expert?

THE COURT: I'm saying that if you put on the expert, then anything that he is reviewing or talking about or anything else, everything needs to be turned over, not your redacted version.

MR. KUMIEGA: Judge, as to the parameters of the protective order, we talked to the Court about how narrow or how large that would be, because --

THE COURT: It would be very narrow.

MR. VANN: Thank you, your Honor.

MR. MARTIN: We don't have a problem with that, Judge.

THE COURT: Okay. The only issue that I see is if, and you can come to the Court if you need to go over some portion with your expert.


THE COURT: Then we could discuss whether it goes further to include an expert.

MR. KUMIEGA: Could we have a notice of who the expert is going to be? We had a Rule 16 reciprocal discovery. My understanding the only expert is going to be Mr. Savage in this case, and he's basically a firearms guy, unless Fritz Scheurne comes back again. I don't know.

MR. MARTIN: At this point, that's it, Judge. I mean, we haven't seen the manuals, we don't know what we need -- how we need to proceed in that regard.

THE COURT: So if you do, and you determine that there is something, then you would recall -- what's his name?

MS. SYKES: I believe Scheurne, on of the primary reasons we're not calling him is he was unable to be here during this period of time. We don't intend to call Dr. Scheurne. We would have to rely on somebody that we don't have right now.

THE COURT: Who do you intend to call to verify this sale of this -- from Birmingham Arms?

MR. KUMIEGA: Either Mr. Davenport, his wife, or Guy Walker, your Honor.

MR. MARTIN: Davenport testified at the first trial, didn't he?


MS. SYKES: And I believe the reason was Guy Walker claimed he wasn't familiar because he wasn't the one that input the data field and duh-duh-duh-duh-duh-duh-duh.

THE COURT: What did Mr. Davenport, did he testify about the cost or price of the gun?

MR. MARTIN: No. He testified he got them and sold then as they were, basically.

MR. KUMIEGA: He was a pass-through.

MR. MARTIN: That's what he testified to. And, I mean, I can't go into any more specific detail because I don't remember right off the top of my head, Judge. But we've since received additional investigative reports that go to pricing now, what I represented to you that if we sold a tube, we sold it for $200 during that period of time, if we sold a fully automatic gun, we sold it for 5 or $600, and then --

THE COURT: But that's Mr. Walker, right?

MR. MARTIN: No, that's Mr. Davenport.

THE COURT: Oh, Mr. Davenport said that.

MR. MARTIN: And that's what prompted this --

THE COURT: Okay. So Mr. Davenport said that.

MR. KUMIEGA: We gave them that information as soon as we got the invoice; we followed up immediately. That's what was the cascade that started the events, Judge.

THE COURT: So you've asked for a continuance to April 20th?

MR. MARTIN: I've got docketing problems, for lack of a better word, out the wazoo, Judge. We have a trial in front of Judge White, an anti-trust case set May 4th. It's not been continued before, I don't know if he would -- it's in Muskogee. L don't know if he would continue it or not. But when I saw Ed, I guess it was Friday, he anticipates this will last two weeks. Isn't that what you told me Friday?


MR. MARTIN: I was hoping it would be less.

MR. KUMIEGA: Seven to ten days. That was my feeling.

MR. MARTIN: Not realizing that my trial in front of Judge White was the 4th, Judge, I thought maybe the 20th. But Judge White might -- I've not talked to him, but I would ask him to maybe bump that case, if he would consider doing that and maybe set this the 13th. I don't know, I'll have to talk to Judge White.

THE COURT: What's the problem on the 13th?

MR. MARTIN: Of April? I don't have my calendar here, Judge. If I can run down --

MR. KUMIEGA: I have three trials but I think two of them are gone.

MR. MARTIN: Do you have the calendar, Kendall?


MR. MARTIN: Could I run up to the courtroom, Judge, and grab my docket book?


MR. MARTIN: I'll be right back.

(Brief pause.)

MR. MARTIN: I think the reason I picked the 20th was just to give us enough time to get everything done. The week of the 13th, it does not look like I have any major things going on that can't be moved. Next week is the -- let's see -- the 20th. Same with the next week, Judge.

THE COURT: One of the things that bothers me, Mr. Kumiega, is that order on the 9th of February said:

"The Court will not allow any issue to be raised after February 20th unless it is truly a new matter that was not known and it could not have been raised or discovered with the exercise of due diligence before February 20th."

Why couldn't this have been discovered with some kind of due diligence before then?

MR. KUMIEGA: Judge, they tried to open the file, they thought it was a bad --

THE COURT: I understand that. But they tried again and it was bad, but then somebody went further.

MR. KUMIEGA: Right. And I --

THE COURT: So why didn't they go further and do that back in December?

MR. KUMIEGA: Judge -- your Honor, I have no idea. I honestly don't know, but I will take full responsibility. I'm the captain of the ship, I should have had it done. I apologize. I don't know.

THE COURT: I think the options are -- one concern I have in continuing it is what's to keep the government from finding something new the Friday before the next trial. This has been a history.

MR. KUMIEGA: I understand. What I think I would like to suggest to the Court, because the letter we got from Mr. Martin asked for different things that we were un--

THE COURT: But I said in that order to go through everything you had and make sure you had everything in order. Basically, that was the intent and that's what it said.

MR. KUMIEGA: And we --

THE COURT: So you didn't go through it until you got a letter from Mr. Martin?

MR. KUMIEGA: Judge, we were -- we were standing pat until he said we wanted these other things, they went back and looked again, Judge.

THE COURT: Well, it looks like my option is either to continue -- either to go forward with this trial today and exclude this document and any reference to it by the government in its case in chief, and that takes care of this last-minute issue. There is a problem in that if Mr. Friesen testifies and opens the door, then I don't know whether it would be admissible or not, just see what he testified to. But if he opens the door to it where it could be used to rebut his testimony, then that's a different issue. But as far as using it in their case in chief, that would be -- the Court could -- obviously, the government has violated the Court's order in not going through their files and being ready and bringing this on at the last minute.

The other alternative would be to continue the case to the 13th or the 20th, and then unless there is some other reason, but not due to the lateness of production, allow the government to use it.

So Mr. Martin, I'm going to leave you that option.

MR. MARTIN: Your Honor, the problem we have with the first option is, going forward today and excluding the government's use of this, the information they gleaned from the CD is not so much as there's evidence on there that helps the government, there is evidence on there that helps the defense that we have just now for the first time seen as of Saturday when we went through it that is clearly exculpatory. So the sanction of saying to the government you can't use it doesn't really help us because there are 700 -- at least 750 or 60,000 entries, and maybe more. We haven't been able to open all the files ourselves because of the nature of the document, but 750,000 entries, and we have found, generically 10 to 20 --

THE COURT: I'm giving you the option, Mr. Martin, whether we proceed today and exclude that evidence or whether we continue it and --

MR. MARTIN: May I -- may we take a brief recess and go talk to our client?


MS. SYKES: Just quickly, your Honor. Would you be not -- would the government be prohibited from providing the information -- they are not intending to introduce any of these records, just a receipt that they were able to dig up after they saw some entries. Isn't that correct? They are not intending to have --

THE COURT: The receipt would be excluded.

MS. SYKES: Oh, okay.

MR. MARTIN: Could we take a five-minute recess and talk to our client, Judge?


MR. MARTIN: Thank you.

(brief recess)

MR. MARTIN: Judge, we ask the court to put it on the 13th, and further ask that there be deadlines set. If they intend to call Mr. Strothheide, I don't want to come in here on April 13th and say Friday they gave us this 300-page policy and procedure manual that we can't review during trial to cross-examine him, and deadlines for them to produce for you any manuals that you need to review for the compliance inspection.

MR. KUMIEGA: I agree with that.

MR. VANN: As soon as I contact ATF today we're going to give you the one that you want to review, and the other ones will be delivered under protective order right away.

THE COURT: No later than Friday?

MR. VANN: Absolutely, your Honor.

THE COURT: No later than Friday.

MR. VANN: If they exist, you'll have them before Friday.

MR. MARTIN: I've got Mr. Strothheide's testimony, your Honor. I'm trying to find in here where he talked about --

THE COURT: Anything he talked about or referred to or whatever will be produced completely under protective order.

MR. MARTIN: The protective order basically says neither Kendall nor I can disclose it to anyone without further order of the Court.


MR. KUMIEGA: We don't have any problem with that.

THE COURT: And the compliance memos or manuals or whatever, everything disclosed, that disclosed to the Court by Friday also.

MR. VANN: Yes, absolutely.

THE COURT: If you cannot find one for '96, any other years or other things that might have been consistent with the policies.

MR. MARTIN: It would be 2003.

THE COURT: Excuse me, 2003. I don't know why I said that.

THE LAW CLERK: Used by the investigators?

THE COURT: Well, they may or may not have that one.

THE LAW CLERK: Or current at that time?

THE COURT: Any memo relating to compliance inspections and whatever, all of that, you know what their concern is.

MR. VANN: I gave them a broad explanation of what was at issue, your Honor, and I have them scouring, and I'll turn all that over to you.

THE COURT: And I would just say that is the government still has files they haven't opened or gone through, they're probably not going to be used in any trial on the 13th. You've had plenty of time to go through everything, unless it's exculpatory and it will have to be disclosed.

MR. MARTIN: For clarification purposes, Judge, it is my understanding also that by Friday we're going to have anything Mr. Strotheide may have reviewed.

MR. KUMIEGA: Yes. If he's going to testify.

MR. MARTIN: I understand that.

THE COURT: If they don't have it --

MR. MARTIN: If we don't get it by Friday, he can't testify in rebuttal?

THE COURT: Can't testify in case in chief or rebuttal or -- not in this case.


THE COURT: Anything else?

MR. MARTIN: I think Kendall's birthday falls during the trial, Judge. We may have to get a cake or something.

THE COURT: The only other thing I would say is any e-mails between the parties need to go to Ms. Sykes and Mr. Martin both. Not one or the other, but both.

The other thing I'm concerned is not only about that, after specific requests, but what was this about not just walking down this material rather than sending it FedEx or something? It's almost like the government is trying to slow everything down.

MR. KUMIEGA: No, your Honor. Judge --

THE COURT: It's two blocks down there, Mr. Kumiega. Did you send something FedEx or UPS or something to his office?

MR. KUMIEGA: We don't have a runner. It was a bundle of all this stuff they requested. It's a huge amount of stuff to bring down there.

THE COURT: You don't have anybody that can carry that down there.

MR. KUMIEGA: No, your Honor. We were working putting the case together. We don't have a runner.

THE COURT: You don't have an agent that can walk it down there?

MR. KUMIEGA: Judge, these guys are running around --

THE COURT: Didn't you realize Thursday or Friday --

MR. KUMIEGA: Judge --

THE COURT: You can't walk two blocks down there during lunch or something?

MR. KUMIEGA: Judge, we --

THE COURT: I just find all of this very troubling, that it's all last-minute, there is no effort to expedite it. And it's kind of almost, it looks deliberate to me, Mr. Kumiega.

MR. KUMIEGA: It isn't.

THE COURT: You're not doing what was requested, sending e-mails to Ms. Sykes directly. I'm just saying it's troubling to me, number one, in that it's last minute, and number two, then it's kind of like you've got three weeks to go and you're just kind of taking your time. I'm just saying it's troubling in the whole thing.

MR. KUMIEGA: I understand. Just in response --

THE COURT: So anything else --

MR. KUMIEGA: Your Honor --

THE COURT: -- you're not going to be able to introduce if you discover anything else.

MR. KUMIEGA: No. Your Honor.

THE COURT: You understand that?

MR. KUMIEGA: Yes, your honor. And I positively agree. The only reason --

THE COURT: I don't need to hear anything else.

The third day of groundhog day I hope is better, which will be April 10th, 11th, and 12th. So we'll set this, start at ten o'clock on the 13th. I'll go dismiss the jury for wasting their day. If I could sanction the government I would, but it would just be money out of the government's pocket for paying the government, but I don't want this to happen again.

MR. KUMIEGA: It won't.

THE COURT: Okay. We're through for today.

(End of proceedings.)