Copyright 1995 Cable News Network, Inc.

SHOW: NEWS 7:44 am ET

July 14, 1995

Transcript # 111-5

TYPE: Interview

SECTION: News; Domestic

LENGTH: 1102 words
HEADLINE: Writers Say Investigation May Restore Trust in FBI

GUESTS: LEXIS-NEXIS Related Topics <=1> Full Article <=2> Related Topics

This document contains no targeted Topics.
NEWS, July 14, 1995


Two authors of recent books on the FBI agree that congressional investigations
of the deaths at Ruby Ridge, Idaho, and Waco, Texas, and subsequent alleged
cover-ups are important to restoring confidence.

BOB CAIN, Anchor: Well, hearings are to begin next week, Wednesday, on
whether government agents acted properly in the raid and siege of the Branch
Davidian compound in Waco, Texas. The new debate over the role of federal law
enforcement is raging around the country. Two authors who have looked at those
issues, among others, join us this morning. They are James Bovard, author of
Lost Rights: The Destruction of American Liberty, and Ronald Kessler, who wrote
The FBI: Inside The Most Powerful Law Enforcement Agency.

Gentlemen, good morning to you both.

RONALD KESSLER, Author, 'The FBI - Inside the Worlds Most Powerful Police
Agency': Good morning.

JAMES BOVARD, Author, 'Lost Rights': Good morning.
NEWS, July 14, 1995

BOB CAIN: Can we begin, without taking a lot of time doing it, by simply
agreeing that there are superb people in both agencies - the ATF and the FBI -
doing awfully important work and doing it well, but that there does appear to be
enough evidence to indicate that there have been mistakes made?


JAMES BOVARD: That's- basic, yeah.

BOB CAIN: OK. No disagreements, there. We're talking this morning both about
Waco and Ruby Ridge. Is there evidence, Mr. Kessler, of an FBI cover-up of what
happened at Ruby Ridge?

RONALD KESSLER: I think there's certainly evidence of- of lack of aggressiveness
and lack of impartiality in looking into what happened at Ruby Ridge. The
person who was in charge, Larry Potts [sp], I believe was aware of the change,
and did approve the change in policy that allowed the agents to shoot in a
different way from the way their policy had previously been articulated.
Things- High-profile cases like that are always cases where the top FBI
officials are aware of what's going on, and it's just real absurd to think that
Larry Potts was not aware of this and did not approve of it.
NEWS, July 14, 1995

BOB CAIN: -Do you see a cover-up?

RONALD KESSLER: -And the fact that he was- he was promoted to deputy certainly
sends the wrong message, and- and, you know, you could call it a cover-up, but
it's something that should be rectified.

BOB CAIN: Mr. Bovard, same question of you.

JAMES BOVARD: Yeah, I think it was definitely a cover-up. I think there's
still a cover-up ongoing. It's amazing to me to see what the FBI has done in
this case. There was a confidential report the Justice Department did. I
finally got a copy of that a couple weeks ago, and I was amazed to see that the
Justice Department in so many areas found conclusions the direct opposite of
what the FBI found. The FBI's put out a lot of false information on this case.
FBI Director Freed [sp] put out a statement in January, and in that statement he
claimed that Randy Weaver, the person the FBI was going after primarily in- in
Ruby Ridge, Idaho, he claimed Weaver had been convicted on the original fire
arms charge. That was false. There is still a lot of false information being
put out by the FBI. Congress needs to jump on this case and force the truth
NEWS, July 14, 1995

BOB CAIN: Why, gentlemen, by the way, are the U.S. marshals not targets of
investigations here? They committed, did they not, what is perceived by many as
the initial blunders at Ruby Ridge.

JAMES BOVARD: Yeah, I think that's a very good question, and I hope, as
Congress starts digging into this, they'll find the time and the courage to go
after the marshals. One interesting thing that came out in the confidential
report was that the marshals' final confrontation with Randy Weaver was
postponed for three months because there was a guy, Henry Hudson [sp], who had
been nominated to be director of the marshals, and what they did was postpone
the confrontation until after he had been confirmed by the U.S. Senate, and some
of the marshals there in Idaho were very upset because that kind of threw their
operation off of pace.

BOB CAIN: All right. Mr. Kessler, on turning to Waco, now, is there evidence,
to the best of your knowledge, that the NRA is playing some kind of key role in
the pending investigation, re-investigation, of Waco?

RONALD KESSLER: I haven't heard of anything like that.

BOB CAIN: Not- You have not heard that the NRA, for example, that their experts,
one of their experts is being subpoenaed to testify?
NEWS, July 14, 1995

RONALD KESSLER: I'm sure it's true, but I just haven't heard of it. But- But I
think it was the ATF that originally screwed that up, and the FBI was brought in
to, sort of, clean up the mess. The overall problem is that the FBI, though,
has taken the position that these things are all matters that are within the
FBI. It's really none of the public's business. Larry Potts, in particular,
has taken that kind of position - that he doesn't want embarrassing things about
the bureau such as I revealed in my book The FBI to come out. And I think that
that attitude is what needs to be changed. The FBI has to be accountable to the
public, has to realize that it has to be accountable and that's- that's where
Larry Potts, I think, is very flawed.

BOB CAIN: You refer to the ATF 'screw up' - you term - at Waco. Is that, in
your mind, unquestioned?

JAMES BOVARD: No question. I mean, it was just- it was just absurd. I mean,
they should have, first of all, gone in and- arrested David Koresh when he was
away from the compound. There were- there were cover-ups about what the premise
was to begin with. They used military helicopters and military equipment to-

BOB CAIN: I'm sorry- to interrupt you, but we're running low on time. Mr.
Kessler, a final word in 30 seconds?
NEWS, July 14, 1995

RONALD KESSLER: Well, I think it's good that this is all coming out. I think
there'll be information to support both sides in these arguments, and let's see
what happens.

BOB CAIN: Mr. Bovard?

JAMES BOVARD: Yeah, it's good to see that some U.S. Congress members are
finally going to earn their pay checks and do the investigation, do the digging,
and have the open confrontation. For too long, too many Congressmen have acted
like it's a crime to criticize federal law enforcement, and if we're going to
have good law enforcement, Congress has to be on their case.

BOB CAIN: All right, gentlemen thank you both - James Bovard, author of Lost
Rights, and Ronald Kessler, who wrote The FBI: The Most Powerful Police Agency.