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Today, as we delved into the facts behind the Fast & Furious witch hunt and the details about Sibel Edmonds work for the FBI that saw her prosecuted and persecuted for telling the truth, we felt firmly embedded in Opposite World.

Let’s begin with the facts on Fast & Furious and Darrel Issa’s vendetta against President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder.  The “gun walking” program that came to be known as Fast & Furious started under the George W. Bush administration and then-Attorney General Michael Mukasey.  As Think Progress points out, here are the facts in the non-case: 

1. Issa Has No Case: Issa’s uncovered no evidence showing Holder bears any blame for the botched operations begun under George W. Bush, even though the Justice Department turned over thousands of pages of documents concerning the operations. Instead of accepting this fact, Issa has requested many more documents containing confidential information regarding ongoing law enforcement investigations, and is now threatening to hold Holder in contempt if these documents are not turned over. Holder is entirely correct to withhold these documents, however, because Justice Department documents are not subject to congressional subpoena if they would reveal “strategies and procedures that could be used by individuals seeking to evade

[DOJ’s] law enforcement efforts.

2. Reagan’s Justice Department Agreed With Holder: President Reagan’s Justice Department warned in the 1980s that the Constitution’s separation of powers prevents the kind of documents Issa is seeking from being revealed to Congress because of the risk that the legislature could “exert pressure or attempt to influence the prosecution of criminal cases.”

3. Law Enforcement Rejects Issa’s Witchhunt: Issa’s efforts to embarrass Holder are an unnecessary distraction that hinders the Department of Justice’s ability to do its real job. As an organization representing numerous senior law enforcement officials warned Issa, his efforts are “an impediment to the vigorous enforcement of violence and crime.”

4. Even Top Republicans Think Issa Goes Too Far: After Issa leaked his plans to pursue contempt charges to the media, the House Republican leadership pressured him to back off. Indeed, even House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) has indicated that Issa is overreaching.

5. Issa Is Fixated On A Conspiracy Theory: Perhaps the most bizarre aspect of this affair is what Issa once suggested his investigation will uncover. In an interview with Sean Hannity, Issa claimed that the Obama administration “made a crisis” when they continued the Bush-era gunrunning operations because they wanted to “us[e] this crisis to somehow take away or limit people’s Second Amendment rights.” This accusation originates from a former militiaman who supports violent resistance to imagined government attempts to seize his guns. And it amounts to an accusation that a series of botched gun stings that begun during the Bush Administration were actually part of a secret Obama plot to release guns to Mexican drug lords, so that those guns could then be used to kill federal agents, which would then cause a national uprising in support of gun control.

Got  that? Good. Maybe you can share it with all the many cable news pundits who can’t seem to find the time to track down the facts.

This morning, I had the pleasure of speaking with a real American hero on my show.  Her name is Sibel Edmonds. She speaks a slew of languages, including Farsi, Turkish and others, and she was hired by the FBI in the days immediately following 9/11 to help translate a backlog of materials that might shed some light on how this tragedy happened.  She quickly found real, tangible evidence of cover-ups, scary alliances with targets of investigations going up to some of the highest elected officials in the nation, and even FBI employees in her own department working with FBI targets.  Yet when she tried to alert her superiors to what she found, she was harassed, intimidated, persecuted and prosecuted.

She spent over five years of her life, most of her (and her awesome husband’s) savings, lost friends and family, and took her fight for what’s right all the way to the Supreme Court where they bowed to cover-ups and corruption at the highest levels.  

Sibel Edmonds finally wrote her story, though the FBI and the US government did everything in their power to make sure it would never be published.  She wound up publishing it herself.  The book, Classified Woman tells the most terrifying tale I’ve ever read in a book that I couldn’t put down. You can read more about it at the Classified Woman website and check out the Boiling Frogs Post, where Sibel Edmonds continues to expose the secrets they don’t want you to hear.

As today is Thursday, I spent a few minutes talking with the busiest sexy liberal around – John Fugelsang, who’s been filling in for Jennifer Granholm on Current TV’s The War Room  this week, will guest host Eliot Spitzer’s Viewpoint next week, and the Stephanie Miller Show the following week!

And now about the Kurt Russell picture and the kiss…  at the end of the show this morning, I spoke about the death of Rodney King last week.  (I know… there is a connection, just hear me out.)  When Rodney King was beaten to a pulp by LAPD officers, I was living in Los Angeles.  When the verdict came down acquitting those officers, I sat in my office at KLOS where I was the producer of the Mark & Brian radio program, with a terrible sense of doom.  We know what happened next…

Anyway, the news about Rodney King’s death came down just after I read the news that my friend, Mark Thompson (the Mark half of Mark & Brian), would be retiring at the end of the summer.  

So, this morning, I closed the show with a bit of audio from circa 1993, of our discussion following an in-studio appearance by Kurt Russell, the picture above and the kiss that followed.

Tomorrow, I’ll be guest hosting the Randi Rhodes Show, so come on over and join in, 3-6pm ET at