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Entries in Peter King (3)

Thursday
Jan052012

Bin Laden Strike: Gov't Probes Possible Leaks of Classified Info for Movie

AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The Department of Defense and CIA are looking into the possible release of classified information to filmmakers on the killing of Osama bin Laden, according to a top Republican lawmaker.

Last August, Rep. Pete King, the chairman of the House committee on Homeland Security, called for an investigation into reports that the Obama administration granted Sony Pictures high-level access for a film on the mission that killed Osama bin Laden.

In a letter from DoD’s Inspector General’s office dated Dec. 23 and released by the committee Thursday, King is told “after an initial review of information, the Office of the Deputy Inspector General for Intelligence and Special Program Assessments has announced a project…to investigate the concerns raised” by his August 9 inquiry.

The CIA’s Office of Public Affairs also wrote King Nov. 8 that the CIA is “developing a written policy to create a single point of reference that will govern future interactions with the entertainment industry.”

“I am pleased that the Inspectors General at DoD and the CIA agree with me that potential leaks to filmmakers are something worth investigating and taking action to address,” King, R-New York, wrote in a statement Thursday. “The leaks that followed the successful bin Laden mission led to the arrests of Pakistanis and put in danger the mission’s heroes and their families.  Privately, individuals in the intelligence and special operations communities expressed support for my request for a probe.  I look forward to an update on the investigation and actions taken thus far.”

King wrote Aug. 9 that he was concerned, “regarding ongoing leaks of classified information regarding sensitive military operations” and he warned that close cooperation on the Hollywood action-thriller could lead to further leaks that could undermine the success of future operations.

“Further participation by JSOC and the Agency in making a film about the raid is bound to increase such leaks, and undermine these organizations’ hard-won reputations as “quiet professionals” -- reputations important for their continued operational success,” King, R-New York, wrote in a letter addressed to Defense Department Inspector General Gordon Heddell and CIA Inspector General David Buckley. “The success of these organizations is vital to our continued homeland security.”

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told ABC News’ Jake Tapper last summer that King’s allegations were “ridiculous” and “simply false” and he suggested the Homeland Security committee had more pressing concerns to investigate.

“We do not discuss classified information,” Carney said.  "I would hope that as we face the continued threat from terrorism, the House Committee on Homeland Security would have more important topics to discuss than a movie.”

The film is to be directed by director Kathryn Bigelow, who won an Oscar for directing The Hurt Locker – which won seven total Oscars in 2010, including best picture. Mark Boal, who worked with Bigelow on the blockbuster, has also signed on to produce the as-yet-untitled Bin Laden movie, which is in pre-production and will star Rooney Mara, Tom Hardy and Idris Elba.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Dec272011

Georgia Woman Shot to Death by Police over WMD Hoax

Hemera/Thinkstock(MARIETTA, Ga.) -- A Georgia woman who allegedly sent a hoax WMD package to a Republican New York State senator and another package with a bloody severed pig's foot to Rep. Peter King was shot and killed by police on Christmas morning when officers responded to multiple panic alarms at her apartment.

King, a Long Island Republican who held controversial hearings last year on Muslim extremism, alleged in a statement that the woman sent him a package in April, intercepted by postal inspectors, that contained a severed pig's foot and a note calling him a "Muslim basher" and suggesting King kiss her "black Muslim ass."

According to Cobb County police, when the officers arrived at her Marietta, Ga., home, Jameela Barnette opened the door wielding a knife and a handgun. Police say she was shot dead after she took a swipe at an officer with the knife.

The officer's injuries are non-life-threatening, police said. The officer has been placed on paid administrative leave pending an ongoing investigation into the incident.

Barnette, 53, allegedly sent a package to New York State Sen. Greg Ball in April that contained a Curious George stuffed monkey, a Star of David and a vial of liquid. She also made threatening statements in a letter filled with a tirade against Jews and Christians, authorities said. The FBI was called in to investigate a potential weapon of mass destruction and Ball's office was locked down.

According to local television station WXXA in New York, a woman claiming to be Barnette said she sent the package because she believed Sen. Ball was discriminating against her Muslim faith. Barnette was arrested and indicted earlier this year for her role in sending the package. A judge released her on her own recognizance.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that she was ordered by the judge to undergo a psychiatric evaluation. According to the indictment, the package contained a vial labeled "Zyklon B," which is a cyanide-based pesticide used in Nazi concentration camps.

Rep. King said his office has been cooperating with law enforcement officials since postal screeners intercepted the package in April. "I believe this was all a result of the blind and false hysteria stirred up by opponents of the radicalization hearings I convened in March," he said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
May032011

Osama Bin Laden Death Photo: How Gruesome?  

CNN via Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- ABC News has learned that the Obama administration possesses a number of photographs of Osama bin Laden’s corpse, taken in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and from the deck of the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson.

Officials who have seen the photographs describe them as “gruesome.” Bin Laden has a gunshot wound to his forehead. The insides of his head are visible.

The pictures from Pakistan are of bin Laden in the compound, dead. There are also pictures of his dead son Khaled, the dead courier, and the dead courier’s brother.

The pictures of bin Laden in Afghanistan are from a U.S. military base. The ones from the aircraft carrier are of bin Laden on the deck before and after he was wrapped in a shroud, in keeping with Muslim burial traditions.

Representative Peter King, R-N.Y., said Tuesday afternoon he’s heard the bin Laden death photos aren’t that bad.

“They’re not ghoulish, they’re not going to scare people off, they’re not offensive,” King told reporters after the briefing.  “Nothing more than you expect with a person with a bullet in his head.”

But, as Mr. King acknowledged, he has not seen the photos.  King was speaking after Leon Panetta gave House members a classified briefing, but Panetta did not show the photos at the briefing.

But a source tells ABC News they have seen the photos and disagree with King’s characterization.  

This source, who was shown about a half-dozen of the photos, says they look like photos from “a bad crime scene” -- bloody and “gruesome.”

Maybe it’s a question of how you define gruesome.  The source says, “It’s what you’d expect from somebody shot in the head with a high-caliber bullet.”  To this source -- that ‘s bad.

In fact, after viewing the photos, this source says it would be a mistake to release them -- especially so soon after the mission.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio