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May 2 – LAWFUEL – The Law News Network — Senate Dems, still trying to…

May 2 – LAWFUEL – The Law News Network — Senate Dems, still trying to quash the U.N. nomination of John Bolton, are investigating more allegations that Bolton sought to intimidate career officials who disagreed with his hard-line views. The latest
hot leads surfaced during a Senate staff interview late last week with John
Wolf, former head of the State Department’s Nonproliferation Bureau, which
reports to Bolton. Sources say Wolf told investigators about two cases when
Bolton talked of seeking to “discipline” lower-ranking officials who, he
allegedly said, were “not diligent.”

Wolf said he believed Bolton’s real grievance was that he had “policy
differences” with them. Investigators believe Bolton favored rapid sanctions
against WMD proliferators, while his underlings thought countries accused of
proliferation should get a chance to clean up first. Bolton supporters insist
their man never initiated formal disciplinary action against any career
employee.

Bolton backers are also hitting back at a senior intel analyst on
Latin America who Bolton once asked the CIA to transfer to a new assignment.
The analyst, currently serving undercover overseas, was skeptical of intel
regarding alleged Cuban germ warfare that Bolton and other hard-liners wanted
to publicize. Bolton supporters say he was justifiably critical of the analyst
for allegedly paying too much attention to the work of Ana Belen Montes, a top
Pentagon intel analyst who in 2002 was jailed as a Cuban spy. An intel
official said the notion that the analyst was unduly influenced by Montes does
“not pass the laugh test.”

Bolton’s critics are also pressing for details of requests he made for
National Security Agency electronic “intercepts” containing the names of U.S.
officials. (NSA rules require it to delete names of Americans inadvertently
caught by its worldwide eavesdropping network, but officials can request that
the names be disclosed if they have a “need to know.”) Bolton’s request for 10
intercepts with U.S. names has set off a D.C. guessing game: Did he want info
to undermine bureaucratic rivals like Korea expert Jack Pritchard, Deputy
Secretary of State Richard Armitage or even Colin Powell? Was he trying to
check up on U.S. representatives to nuclear talks between Iran and European
governments? Hoping to find out what two members of the Senate Foreign
Relations Committee said to Iran’s U.N. ambassador? Wondering what the NSA had
on an unnamed U.S. journalist?

The NSA indicates it will this week deliver
documentation on Bolton’s requests to the Senate intelligence committee, which
then will have to figure out how to publicize contents without leaking
sensitive intel. Bolton supporters say his requests will prove to be legit.

British MP George Galloway and his opponent the Daily Telegraph will leave no stone unturned to sort out what could be a spectacular libel case.