Aug 06 2007

NSA Leak Case Moving Out

Published by at 8:32 am under All General Discussions,FISA-NSA

Clean Up: Moved all updates to the end in reverse chronological order (latest at the end). But one irony update for the top of this post. Seems the warrant to search Tamm’s house came from the FIS Court, since it was a “classified warrant”. Too funny

Original Post: It seems the US Government has an eye on who might have exposed our national security efforts to the media, and therefore al-Qaeda. Not only was the leak of our efforts to monitor terrorists overseas exposed, but the fact we were tracking down and investigating contacts they had here in the US. This is no different from a legal wiretap in the US – if someone not covered by a surveillance warrant makes contact with a mafia boss or drug dealer, they are identified and investigated to determine if they need to be included in the ongoing investigation. Dealing with terrorist cells is no different. Once we have them identified overseas, if they contact someone here that is just as legal since the target that trapped them was a legal target of a wiretap.

But as usual, some think it is their job to take the law and the country into their own personal hands and dictate what is and is not legal. The first candidate for crazed bureaucrat turned traitor is a Department of Justice lawyer, sadly working in the anti-terrorism area:

The controversy over President Bush’s warrantless surveillance program took another surprise turn last week when a team of FBI agents, armed with a classified search warrant, raided the suburban Washington home of a former Justice Department lawyer. The lawyer, Thomas M. Tamm, previously worked in Justice’s Office of Intelligence Policy and Review (OIPR)—the supersecret unit that oversees surveillance of terrorist and espionage targets.

People always assume only a President can misuse government and the media for his/her own purpose. But the fact is, after Nixon, it is now some mid to low level bureaucrat who tries to gain game the system and the gullible media (who need those Pulitzers you know) for personal gain. Think Valerie and Joe Wilson who created a lie about forged documents to get head lines and accuse Bush of lying to get into Iraq. It was Joe Wilson’s lies that were the only ones discovered – in the end. But I digress. Clarice Feldman has some comments up on the matter and points to some great investigative efforts by Tom Maguire.

I think this is the tip of the iceberg. It seems someone is trying to cover their tracks. I found this on a google search for Thomas Tamm, Justice Department:

Equal Justice USA
Trial Attorney, United States Department of Justice, 1972-1974. Thomas L. Crowe, Baltimore, MD … Thomas M. Tamm, Rockville, MD. Assistant State’s … – 15k – Cached

It is not much, but I assume this fits Tamm’s liberal leanings. Equal Justice is a liberal activist group:

Equal Justice USA was launched in 1990, building on several years of Quixote Center work opposing the death penalty in our home state of Maryland. Our purpose was to build public scrutiny and protest of human rights in the U.S. legal system abolishing the death penalty being a top priority.

I gather that includes abolishing the death penalty for terrorists too. Given the fact all references to Tamm have been removed it might be they are reacting to the breaking news. Actually, the site is starting to lose some of their pages as I copy them. This seems to be a clear indication they want to cover up their connections.

Updates: Seems Tamm was a a Montgomery County Prosecutor before heading to the Justice Department. This is confirmed by another google search that hit on a now gone page at Equal Justice USA:

Equal Justice USA
Honorable Andrew Sonner, Rockville, MD. Judge, Court of Special Appeals, … Thomas M. Tamm, Rockville, MD. Assistant State’s Attorney, Montgomery County … – 15k – Cached

A little digging on other sites that copied the Equal Justice USA gives us this complete listing. A snippet shows:

Honorable Andrew Sonner, Rockville, MD
Judge, Court of Special Appeals, 1996-2004
State’s Attorney, Montgomery County, 1971-1996

Ronald E. Stalling, Clarksville, MD
United States Secret Service, Uniform Division, 1970-2002

Thomas M. Tamm, Rockville, MD
Assistant State’s Attorney, Montgomery County
Trial Attorney, Capital Case Unit, United States Department of Justice
Assistant United States Attorney, Washington D.C.

The trial attorney for the Capital Case Unit of the DoJ was against the death penalty. Strange combination there. But I can tell you there is an interesting set of dots to connect. From Judge Sonner who cosigned with Tamm you get to one Judge Reggie B. Walton, who presided over the Libby trial and is now on the FISA Court. Small world, eh?

Updates: I keep wondering if Thomas M. Tamm was the son or relative of Quinn Tamm, a former FBI agent and police system reformer, who may have been the brother of Edward A. Tamm, a famous Federal judge that practiced law in DC for quite some time. The reason is Edward A Tamm seemed to serve when the current judge Royce Lamberth, the outspoken FISA Court Chief judge who presided over the FIS Court when the NY Times started breaking the NSA surveillance story, was an attorney. Another case here. It would be a classic story of a DC power families taking it upon themselves to disrupt the power of a President. This area believes the Presidents that come through serve at their pleasure – not the peoples’. Whatever, there are too many familiar names surrounding this person.

Major Update: Clarice Feldman updated her post to let us all know that Equal Justice USA is a George Soros fronted company. Why am I not surprised this Tamm guy may be a Soros funded agent?

Major Update: Bob Sunshine posted the first comment with an incredible reference that says Thomas A. Tamm is working for donating to the Democratic National Committee (DNC)!


09/17/2004 300.00 24991283185

So the NSA leak trail leads right into the DNC – in a sense. Think that will make headlines – nope. Just another democrat doing his civic duty.

Addendum: While I jumped the gun a bit on the DNC connection (dealing with a major work issue in parallel to this breaking news – not good to divide one’s attention) I did want to note the timing again of the above donation. September 2004 was right before the Kerry-Bush election, and around the time the NSA story was supposed to have broken. There was a big uproar by the lefties that the NSA false story did not come out before the elections. I would not be surprised if someone realized that a leak of this kind, with so few people in the know, would be easy to track down. Someone may have thought they could win without it, or it was not worth the resulting fire storm.

BTW – here is another posting on a website possibly by our mysterious Thomas Tamm.

Update: I queried below above if Thomas M Tamm was the son of one Quinn H Tamm, former FBI agent and brother of Edward A Tamm, a famous federal judge. I also wonder if Quinn John Tamm Jr, staff member of the 9-11 Commission, is also related to the Thomas M Tamm. Just wondering…

Update: This story gets more bizarre as I continue to hunt for info. Our mystery mole, Thomas M Tamm, worked in the DoJ Office of Intelligence Policy and Review (OIPR), which also has some notoriety with regards to an internet data mining effort called “Carnivore” and a missed opportunity with one Osama Bin Laden:

The one-page memo at issue, dated April 5, 2000, and sent via e-mail, was intended to outline the problems that had arisen in a Denver terrorism case for Marion “Spike” Bowman, the FBI’s associate general counsel for national security. Yesterday, Bowman declined to comment and authorities declined to identify the memo’s author or provide further details about the case.

The probe involved the FBI team that investigates suspected operatives of the al Qaeda network. It is known as the Usama bin Laden, or UBL, unit for the agency’s spelling of the al Qaeda leader’s name. The same unit has come under congressional scrutiny in recent weeks over its role in shelving a July 2001 memo from Phoenix FBI agent Kenneth Williams, who had suggested that al Qaeda members might be infiltrating aviation schools and requested that the FBI canvass them for Middle Easterners.

In the latest case to come to light, the UBL unit acquired in March 2000 a warrant under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) for use against a suspect in an investigation based in Denver, according to the memo released yesterday.

The names of the suspect and all others in the memo, except for Bowman’s, were redacted from the copy provided to EPIC.

The memo says that on March 16, 2000, the Carnivore “software was turned on and did not work properly,” capturing e-mails involving both the target and others unconnected to the case.

The memo goes on to say that “the FBI technical person was apparently so upset that he destroyed all the E-Mail take, including the take” from the target. Collingwood, the FBI spokesman, said that the memo is incorrect and that the e-mails gathered in the operation were kept and remain under seal in the court that administers secret wiretaps.

The memo makes clear that the Justice Department’s Office of Intelligence Policy and Review (OIPR), which oversees FISA warrants, was enraged by the blunders in the case, in part because the Justice Department office was allegedly not told that Carnivore was considered experimental at the time.

Referring to an official at OIPR, the memo’s author says: “[To] state that she is unhappy with [the International Terrorism Operations Section] and the UBL Unit would be an understatement of incredible proportions.”

Is there a connection? Who knows. Some more here on Carnivore and 9-11. But Thomas M Tamm did receive an award from Janet Reno around this same time.M

Major Update: I forgot to mention how I got from Thomas Tamm to EPIC and Carnivore (update below). The FISA Court judge who resigned in protest and made news with the NY Times exposure of the NSA Terrorist Surveillance Program was the same James Robertson who turned over the FBI memos on Carnivore to EPIC. I find all these coincidences surrounding these people quite interesting.

Some background on Quinn John Tamm, the 9-11 Commission staff member who shares the same name as our mystery leaker Thomas M Tamm.

28 responses so far

28 Responses to “NSA Leak Case Moving Out”

  1. bobsunshine says:

    Here is some more info (h/t Jackofva from FR) from FEC Database:

    POTOMAC, MD 20854

    09/17/2004 300.00 24991283185

    Also, he received an awarded in 2000 from Reno(h/t Jim-x at FR):

    Thomas M. Tamm
    Trial Attorneys
    Capital Case Unit
    Criminal Division

  2. clarice says:

    AJ I updated my blog..Equal Justice USA is funded through the Quixote Center by George Soros.

  3. clarice says:

    AJ I updated my blog..Equal Justice USA is funded through the Quixote Center by George Soros.

  4. AJStrata says:

    So we have traces to Soros and the DNC. Interesting.

  5. How long before the other Soros-funded fronts cry feigned indignation over imagined attacks on their patriotism? (the likely narrative in the lefty blogosphere covering the unfolding story. . .)

  6. clarice says:

    And Chuck Schumer is head of the DSCC–the same group that unlawfully obtained Steele’s credit records–Schumer the guy pillorying Gonzales and trying to get the details of the FISA program on the record and trying to get the guy behind this investigation bounced. Just saying.

  7. How long before the other Soros-funded fronts cry feigned indignation over imagined attacks on EJUSA’s patriotism? (the likely narrative in the lefty blogosphere covering the unfolding story. . .)

  8. ivehadit says:


    Watergate was about breaking into the dnc headquarters to take out a smear document about John Dean’s wife’s “outside” activities, as I understand it.

    This is about LEAKING NATIONAL SECURITY SECRETS, for heaven’s sake!!!!

  9. ivehadit says:

    Do you all think that Tamm is really an infamous poster here at strata-sphere?????????

  10. crosspatch says:

    AJ, when you get some free moments, it might be worthwhile to tidy up this post a little. I came across it after a bunch of updates above and below the story and it is a little difficult to make sense out of exactly what’s going on here.

    So the suggestion is that Tamm was working for the DoJ, knew some things about what was going on and leaked the stuff after he left? Clinton stacked that entire department with partisans. It is about time that Bush does the same thing, let every single one of the US Attorneys go and have the new guys bring in their own staff.

    I would say that at this point the DNC “owns” the DoJ and probably the FBI as well. The FBI has been impressing me lately as extremely partisan in favor of the Democrats.

  11. FISA leaker outted – by himself?…

    Possibly. According to Newsbusters, an ex DOJ lawyer may be a prime suspect.
    “Anybody who reads Web forums dedicated to current events is familiar with the phenomenom of BDS (Bush Derangement Syndrome) in which leftwingers rant wildly about the …

  12. Tamm Leak Investigation Target revealed as MediaMatters Contributor…

    Newsweek is reporting in its August 13th issue that the FBI is focusing on former Justice Department lawyer, Thomas M. Tamm in regards to the NY Times leak of (so called) warrantless surveilance. AP follow-up to Michael Isikoff piece confirming Tam…

  13. thromnewton says:

    Tamm’s writings sure do sound like Soothsayer.

  14. MerlinOS2 says:

    Right now the left side blogs are speculating that Tamm may be the anonymous poster that was giving lots of info with critical details sounding like insider knowledge about the DOJ attorney firings, Rove /RNC emails Verizion involvement in the wiretaps and many other similar issues including renditions and a lot of other things.

    They had given this person the name “deep modem”.

    If it wasn’t him, it almost had to be someone close considering the inside information provided by that person.

  15. MerlinOS2 says:

    Here is a link with the kos kids talking about Deep Modem

  16. ivehadit says:

    I’m not going to kos’ site. What are they saying Merlin?

  17. MerlinOS2 says:

    For a while now someone as an anonymous poster as Kos and TPM has been posting a lot of detailed inside the DOJ information and that is the nickname they have given him.

    I almost fits that the info may have come from an office like his that would have access to the info this poster was putting out.

  18. MerlinOS2 says:

    Here is a link to one of the TPM articles.

    Look for posts in the comments with no name they are very long a detailed postings

    you can also search for posted by: plus two spaces with the search in page function via ctrl f

  19. Neo says:

    It doesn’t seem to have anything with Judge Tamm, unless it is his grandchildren.

    Judge Edward A. Tamm set aside a Federal Communications Commission ruling that seven words, referring to such things as sexual activities and portions of the female anatomy, could not be used by radio stations.

  20. Can you all help me spread this story around?