XXXXX DRUDGE REPORT XXXXX TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 07, 1999 17:04:22 ET XXXXX
**Must Credit DRUDGE REPORT**
A former CIA agent who claims knowledge of a Delta Force shoot-out at Waco has been promised protection by investigators for a Senate committee after threats were made on the former agent and his son by federal law enforcement officers.
The intimidation of the witness occurred last week when FBI agents warned the witness -- face to face -- that he was in violation of his CIA confidentiality oath and could be charged with "risking national security."
According to congressional sources, investigators for Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, who heads a Senate Judiciary subcommittee with FBI oversight, have promised protection to former CIA Special Agent Gene Cullen -- if his bona fides check out.
[A spokeswoman for Grassley says a vote by the full committee would be required to grant immunity; the process of checking Cullen's story is in the early stages.]
Questions have been raised throughout official Washington about the nature of the threats made against the whistleblower and if FBI Director Louis Freeh was directly aware of the intimidation.
"I don't know how Waco, Texas could possibly be a threat to 'national security,'" one alarmed congressional chairman told the DRUDGE REPORT.
"Cullen was 'politely' reminded that he signed confidentiality papers when he was hired at the CIA," says one source.
Cullen has told investigators that he was visited by agents after he granted an interview to the DALLAS MORNING NEWS two weeks ago.
Cullen, who was in charge of coordinating intelligence in Somalia for the CIA, told the paper that he learned from Delta Force commandos that up to 10 members of the secret Army unit were "present, up front and close" in helping the FBI in the final assault on the Branch Davidian compound.
But the DRUDGE REPORT has learned that Cullen did not tell the paper everything he knew.
In the interview with the NEWS, Cullen stopped short of stating that Delta Force members admitted to him that they were involved in combat at Waco -- information Cullen plans to reveal under oath before Congress!
This much is now known:
Cullen was served a subpoena by congressional investigators last week.
Cullen has moved to a secret location and could not be reached for comment.
Cullen has given an interview for the new film, WACO: A NEW REVELATION.
On camera, the former CIA Special Agent states: Delta Force members said they participated in a shoot-out during the final assault on the Branch Davidian compound in Waco.
FILED BY MATT DRUDGE
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XXXXX DRUDGE REPORT XXXXX MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 06, 1999 21:30:00 ET XXXXX
GOVERNMENT INFORMANT: DELTA FORCE INVOLVED IN WACO SHOOT-OUT
**Must Credit DRUDGE REPORT**
WASHINGTON -- A former government officer has told investigators that members of the secret Army unit Delta Force said they participated in a shoot-out during the final assault on the Branch Davidian compound in Waco, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned.
The witness, according to congressional sources, has already named names -- and will soon offer his account under oath!
The development caused panic and confusion at the top levels of the Justice Department and the FBI over the holiday weekend, leaving one top official scrambling for details.
FBI Director Freeh has demanded a full briefing, one agency source divulged late Monday.
Meanwhile, congressional investigators are growing convinced that infrared film taken by an FBI surveillance aircraft at 9,000 feet on the final day of the Waco standoff does appear to show U.S. armed forces firing into the church compound.
"We are looking at the footage frame-by-frame... most of us have grown convinced that it does show snipers unloading from the rear of a tank," an investigator for the House Government Reform Committee told the DRUDGE REPORT.
Former FBI agent Richard Schwein, a supervisor at Waco, said charges of government gunfire were "absolutely false."
"False, absolutely false," he said on FOX NEWS SUNDAY. "No FBI agent fired any rounds from their weapons at Waco. There were no Delta Forces or special operations soldiers in an operational capacity at Waco.
"And everyone on our side, and the FBI's side, were in armored vehicles, so I don't know how you'd have films of anybody firing into the back of the building. No one was on foot, because we had no body armor that would stop the rounds they were firing."
Use of active military personnel against civilians without presidential decree is a violation of federal law.
Late last month White House spokesman Joe Lockhart first told reporters that he had no information on the waiver issue.
[August 26, 1999; Thursday]
Q Joe, why was the Army's Delta Force present on the scene the day that Waco burned?
MR. LOCKHART: I would refer you to the Justice Department. I don't have information on the Delta Force one way or the other.
Q The reason I asked is because since the law prohibits the military being used against civilians, I wondered whether the White House either, A, requested it or, B, President Clinton signed a waiver for it.
MR. LOCKHART: I don't have any information on that. Again, I'd refer you to Justice. I don't have any independent information on their role, if any.
The next day, when asked again about any possible waiver, Lockhart offered more details.
[August 27, 1999; Friday]
Q What did the White House know about the potential operational involvement of Delta Force in the Waco siege?
MR. LOCKHART: I think that's an issue that was dealt with at the time. And as we said yesterday, the president was not asked to sign a waiver, nor were we aware of any activity that would have required a waiver.
But, the DRUDGE REPORT has learned, Lockhart may still not have the full story.
One witness has told congressional investigators that in April of 1993, in response to a press inquiry, a White House spokesman stated privately that a "waiver is on the president's desk" that would have authorized military intervention.
A development that will cause battle during fresh rounds of congressional hearings.
FILED BY MATT DRUDGE
Reports are moved when circumstances warrant
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(c)DRUDGE REPORT 1999
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