The “Fallen Legion”—Whistleblower thanksgiving


Happy Thanksgiving to all.  A “recommended diary” posted November 26 on the DailyKos website thanks a long list of “public servants who were fired or resigned in protest to the Bush/Cheney/Rove administration.”

Post by Rick Piltz

The DailyKos list is an abridgement of a longer set of original lists posted in several installments (here, here, and here) on the TomDispatch site (a project of the Nation Institute).

Climate Science Watch is a program of the Government Accountability Project (GAP) in Washington, DC, the leading US whistleblower advocacy organization.  Here’s the entry posted on TomDispatch for Jesselyn Radack, my colleague who is now the Homeland Security Director at GAP:

Jesselyn Radack: An attorney in the Justice Department’s Professional Responsibility Advisory Office who worked on the case of John Walker Lindh, the so-called American Taliban, Radack warned federal prosecutors that interrogating him without his attorney present would be unethical. When the FBI interviewed Lindh anyway, Raddack told TomDispatch, she “then recommended that [the transcript] be sealed and only used for intelligence-gathering purposes, not for criminal prosecution.” Again, her advice was ignored. Later, when Lindh was on trial, Radack learned that the judge in the case had requested copies of all internal correspondence concerning Lindh’s interrogation. Although Radack had written more than a dozen e-mails on the subject, she discovered that only two of them had been turned over and neither reflected her contention that the FBI had committed an ethics violation.

Checking the hard-copy office file, she discovered that the rest of her e-mail messages were missing. With the help of technical support, she “resurrected the e-mails from her computer archives, documented them, provided them to her boss, and took home a copy for safekeeping in case they ‘disappeared’ again.” She would later turn over copies of the e-mails to Newsweek magazine in compliance with the Whistleblower Protection Act. She has paid a heavy price for her stand against the government. As she told TomDispatch:

“I was forced out of my job at the Justice Department, fired from my subsequent private sector job [with the law firm of Hawkins, Delafield & Wood] at the government’s behest, placed under criminal investigations, referred to the state bars in which I’m licensed as an attorney, and put on the “no-fly” list. I have spent $100,000 defending against a criminal investigation that was dropped and a bar charge that was dismissed. The D.C. Bar Complaint is still pending after two years and despite the fact that I was elected to the D.C. Bar’s Legal Ethics Committee.”

Resigned, April 2002.

We’re there too.

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