Ex-FBI official to face Congress about claims of WH pressure to inflate domestic extremism numbers
The Obama administration’s response to a Freedom of Information Act request filed by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) illustrates the administration’s efforts to obscure, impede and even cover up its efforts to cover up its own mistakes, according to new testimony, emails and documents obtained by EPIC.
The documents show the FBI’s investigation into the Boston Marathon bombing was politicized and that the FBI made the mistake of interviewing a prominent white nationalist to prove otherwise.
Former FBI agent and current EPIC whistleblower John Guandolo said his group received documents about the Boston bombing investigation, which took place between May and June of 2013.
“That led us to conduct our own investigation of the FBI’s Boston bombing investigation,” Guandolo wrote in a June 5, 2013 email to his fellow EPIC staffers. “While [the] Boston bombing itself was not discussed, we have found that there were more than a few suspicious aspects to the FBI’s investigation.”
The documents obtained by EPIC show the FBI sent the same White House officials multiple messages asking for updates and information about the investigation. Guandolo said these messages were from a former FBI agent who made his career investigating violent extremism.
Guandolo also said the FBI’s Boston bombing investigation was politicized in a way similar to the White House’s response to the Boston bombing, but he said it was a mistake to interview a white nationalist.
“I also believe that the FBI was making every effort to create a narrative that the Boston bombing had been the work of white supremacists,” wrote Guandolo in his June 5 email. “They knew that this narrative was false.”
Instead, the Washington Post has reported: “One of the most important things that the FBI did in its investigation was identify a radical white supremacist as the bomber.” The FBI had already identified a suspect named Tamerlan Tsarnaev as a terrorist in May 2013.
Guandolo’s emails were leaked to EPIC and