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Congress Demanding DOJ Turn Over Evidence Linked To Obama-Hezbollah Drug Trafficking Scandal



(Via ZeroHedge)

Congress has demanded that the Department of Justice turn over all documents related to a disturbing report from POLITICO that the Obama administration quashed a massive DEA investigation into a $200 million per month drug trafficking and money laundering scheme on U.S. soil which was directly funding Hezbollah’s various terror campaigns around the world.

“Add this to the long list of concessions the Obama administration made in pursuit of the nuclear agreement with Iran,” said the source, who was not authorized to speak on the record about the matter. “The difference here is that this wasn’t just bad policy—it was potentially criminal. Congress absolutely has a responsibility to get to the bottom of this.”

The letter follows a commitment made by congressional leaders to open an investigation into the explosive claims of what is being described as a “potentially criminal” enterprise described to the Free Beacon by a congressional source as an offshoot of Obama’s nuclear agreement with Iran which saw $1.7 billion dollars of euros, Swiss francs and other currencies shipped directly to Tehran on wooden pallets.

In early 2016, French police smashed a Hezbollah cell accused of trafficking cocaine for one of the world’s most ruthless drug cartels in order to fund the militant group’s operations in Syria. The Telegraph reported at the time:

The agents, arrested in France, allegedly masterminded a massive global drug ring which raised millions of dollars to arm Hizbollah gunmen fighting for Bashar al-Assad, the Syrian president, in Syria. Two years ago, one of the outfit’s sicarios, or hitmen, was arrested in Spain on suspicion of having ordered up to 400 murders worldwide. The Hizbollah agents detained by French police include alleged leaders of the group’s European cell, including 45-year-old businessman Mohamad Noureddine. The DEA, which has classified him as a “specially-designated global terrorist”, accuses him of being a Lebanese money launderer for Hizbollah’s financial arm.

A DEA statement said: “These proceeds are used to purchase weapons for Hizbollah for its activities in Syria. This ongoing investigation…once again highlights the dangerous global nexus between drug trafficking and terrorism.”

Despite the active and ongoing DEA investigations into Hezbollah’s global operations, the Obama administration “threw an increasingly insurmountable series of roadblocks in its way” according to Politico.

In a Thursday letter from Reps. Jim Jordan (R-OH) and Ron DeSantis (R-FL) and obtained by the Washington Free Beacon, Congress demanded all communications and documents related to the DEA’s “Project Cassandra” campaign which targeted “a global Hizbollah network responsible for the movement of large quantities of cocaine in the United States and Europe,” along with information on operations “Titan” and “Perseus,” as well as the Lebanese Canadian Bank, The Iran-Hezbollah Super Facilitator Initiative, and several named individuals.

Also sought are “all documents and communications referring or relating to the potential designation of Hezbollah as a Transnational Criminal Organization,” along with “all documents referring or relating to efforts to prosecute targets related to Hezbolah” via the RICO act.

“We have a responsibility to evaluate whether these allegations are true, and if so, did the administration undermine U.S. law enforcement and compromise U.S. national security,” the lawmakers wrote to Attorney General Jeff Sessions Sessions.

As the Free Beacon reported yesterday:

U.S. drug enforcement agents who spoke to Politico about the matter accused the Obama administration of intentionally derailing an investigation into Hezbollah’s drug trafficking and money laundering efforts that began in 2008 under the Bush administration.

The investigation centered on Hezbollah and Iranian-backed militants who allegedly participated in the illicit drug network, which was subject to U.S. wiretaps and undercover operations.

Hezbollah is believed to have been laundering at least $200 million a month just in the United States, according to the report.

When U.S. authorities were ready to make the case against Hezbollah’s most senior leadership, Obama administration officials allegedly “threw an increasingly insurmountable series of roadblocks in its way,” according inside sources who spoke to Politico about the situation

The Obama-led effort to block the investigation was “a policy decision, it was a systematic decision,” one source said. “They serially ripped apart this entire effort that was very well supported and resourced, and it was done from the top down.”

As we reported yesterday, Representative Peter Roskam (R-IL), a chief national security voice in the House who fought against the nuclear accord, mimicked the views of DeSantis saying that Congress must investigate the Obama administration’s actions and work to increase pressure on Hezbollah.

“The report alleging the Obama Administration turned a blind eye and allowed Hezbollah to pump drugs into the United States to fund its terror campaigns in the Middle East is not surprising,” Roskam said. “Hampering the DEA’s investigation of Hezbollah would be emblematic of the previous administration’s fixation to strike a nuclear accord with Iran at any costs.”

“This blind eye imperiled our efforts to combat Iran and its proxies’ malign behavior and left us with a cash-flush Iran on the warpath across the Middle East with a nuclear program legitimized by the JCPOA,” Roskam said, using the acronym for the nuclear deal’s official name, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. “Congress needs to investigate this report and do what the Obama Administration refused to do, severely increase pressure on Hezbollah and hold the terrorist group, and its benefactor Iran, accountable for their crimes.”

Congress is especially interested to learn whether key Obama Administration officials, such as National Security Council staffer Ben Rhodes, were involved in quashing the DEA investigation in an effort to preserve diplomatic relations with Iran surrounding the nuclear deal. U.S. DEA agents who spoke to POLITICO accused the Obama administration into derailing an investigation launched during the Bush administration into drug trafficking and money laundering by Hezbollah. The derailed DEA investigation centered on Hezbollah and Iranian-backed militants, which used wiretaps and undercover operations to gather evidence.

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“Might Need Wall Between Arizona And California” Says Republican Rep. From Arizona



(Via The Hill)

Rep. Martha McSally (R-Ariz.) proposed building a border wall between California and Arizona to protect the state.

“As we look in Arizona, we often look into the dangers of the southern border,” McSally said during a round-table discussion about “sanctuary cities” Tuesday at the White House.

Sanctuary cities are municipalities that do not cooperate with federal immigration enforcement.

“But if these dangerous policies continue out of California, we might need to build a wall between California and Arizona as well to keep these dangerous criminals out of our state,” she said, smiling.

She added that California can’t just “provide sanctuary for these criminals and think that it’s only impacting California dangerously.”

Earlier this month, the Trump administration filed a lawsuit against California over the state’s immigration laws.

The Trump administration has been highly critical of California’s sanctuary cities, and administration officials have said they will crack down on policies that limit local law enforcement’s cooperation with federal authorities.

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‘Don’t Accessorize The Cross’ – Pope Francis



(Via Breitbart)

In the lead-up to the commemoration of Holy Week and Easter, Pope Francis has urged Christians to see the crucifix not as an piece of jewelry but rather as a profound symbol of faith in Jesus.
Commenting on the gospel reading March 18, where Jesus says that when he is “lifted up” he will draw all people to himself, the pope said that the passage invites us to contemplate the crucifix, where Christ’s glory is revealed.

“Those who want to know Jesus must look inside the cross, where his glory is revealed,” Francis told pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square on Sunday before reciting the Angelus prayer with them. “Look inside the cross.”

The gospel, he said, “invites us to direct our gaze to the crucifix, which is not a decoration or a fashion accessory.” It is, rather, “a religious symbol to be contemplated and understood.”

“The image of Jesus crucified reveals the mystery of the death of the Son as the supreme act of love, the source of life and salvation for humanity of all times,” he added. “In his wounds we have been healed.”

The pope warned that like other holy objects, the crucifix is sometimes “abused” by people who treat it simply as a piece of jewelry, disregarding its deeper religious significance.

Francis invited his hearers to ask themselves, “How do I look at the crucifix? Like a work of art, to see whether it is beautiful or not? Or do I look inside, entering the wounds of Jesus even to his heart? Do I look at the mystery of God brought low to the point of death, like a slave, like a criminal?”

The pope also encouraged his audience to meditate on the wounds of Christ, which he suffered for the salvation of the world.

In this way, “we will learn the great wisdom of the mystery of Christ, the great wisdom of the cross,” he said.

Despite his criticism of wearing the crucifix as a piece of jewelry, on the following day the pope told a group of young people that he has nothing against tattoos, even in the form of a cross.

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McCabe Supposedly Authorized Investigation Into Sessions



(Via ABC News)

Nearly a year before Attorney General Jeff Sessions fired senior FBI official Andrew McCabe for what Sessions called a “lack of candor,” McCabe oversaw a federal criminal investigation into whether Sessions lacked candor when testifying before Congress about contacts with Russian operatives, sources familiar with the matter told ABC News.

Democratic lawmakers have repeatedly accused Sessions of misleading them in congressional testimony and called on federal authorities to investigate, but McCabe’s previously-unreported decision to actually put the attorney general in the crosshairs of an FBI probe was an exceptional move.

One source told ABC News that Sessions was not aware of the investigation when he decided to fire McCabe last Friday less than 48 hours before McCabe, a former FBI deputy director, was due to retire from government and obtain a full pension, but an attorney representing Sessions declined to confirm that.

Last year, several top Republican and Democratic lawmakers were informed of the probe during a closed-door briefing with Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and McCabe, ABC News was told.

In his own words: McCabe claims firing part of ‘ongoing assault’ on Russia probe
DOJ gives special counsel internal docs on proposed Sessions resignation, source says
By then, Sessions had recused himself from the FBI’s probe of Russia’s meddling in the 2016 presidential election, giving Rosenstein oversight of the growing effort.

Within weeks, Rosenstein appointed special counsel Robert Mueller to take over the investigation and related inquiries, including the Sessions matter.

Two months ago, Sessions was interviewed by Mueller’s team, and the federal inquiry related to his candor during his confirmation process has since been shuttered, according to a lawyer representing Sessions.

“The Special Counsel’s office has informed me that after interviewing the attorney general and conducting additional investigation, the attorney general is not under investigation for false statements or perjury in his confirmation hearing testimony and related written submissions to Congress,” attorney Chuck Cooper told ABC News on Wednesday.

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