Protect the Public Trust, a government watchdog organization, has recently obtained documents it shared with The Federalist obtained through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request showing NBC News worked to slow-walk information about a Biden nominee’s involvement in domestic terrorism.
Last year, Tracy Stone-Manning was tabbed by Joe Biden to head up the federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM). She immediately faced criticism for her involvement in a 1989 plot to spike trees on federal property.
Stone-Manning agreed to testify under oath in the matter against her fellow conspirators in exchange for judicial immunity from prosecution. She typed and sent an anonymous letter to the US Forest Service on her roommate John T. Blount.
The letter warned the government that 500 pounds of metal spikes 8 to 10 inches long had been driven into trees in the Clearwater National Forest. The trees had been marked for harvest. The purpose of such hidden spikes is to damage equipment and maim or kill foresters or firefighters.
Tree spiking was a popular tactic among eco-terrorists in the 1980s.
Last summer, Josh Lederman with NBC asked the Interior Department if the Biden administration intended to stand with its controversial BLM pick. He promised Interior spokesperson Melissa Schwartz last July 8 that he would “not go overboard on it or anything.”
He told Schwartz that he had to consider it a “legitimate story” because of the position Stone-Manning had been nominated for. He promised that his media outlet would point out that she did not actively spike trees herself and that it happened decades ago when she was much younger. He also promised to mention that she was not charged and does not have a criminal record otherwise.
Senate Republicans objected to Stone-Manning’s appointment as an eco-terrorist who was involved in placing spikes in trees that are likely still in place today. She lied to senators in her answers to a written set of questions related to her confirmation hearing. Her misrepresentations led to a complaint filed by Protect the Public Trust with the Interior Department Inspector General.
Stone-Manning was eventually confirmed to lead BLM by a party-line vote. Americans will never know whether honest and thorough reporting by NBC could have impacted the outcome of the vote. Sadly, the same person involved in placing terrorist dangers on public land is now in charge of the agency in charge of its use.