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Monday, April 9, 2012

Torture Whistleblower Becomes 6TH Charge With Espionage Act Under Obama

Torture Whistleblower Becomes 6th Charged with Espionage Act Under Obama

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Former CIA officer John Kiriakou, leaves federal court in Alexandria, Va., in January.

Associated Press: Ex-CIA Officer Charged with Leaking Secret Info

Summary: Former CIA officer John Kiriakou was indicted yesterday under the Espionage Act for allegedly leaking classified information to journalists regarding the CIA's use of waterboarding (labeling it as torture). Kiriakou is the sixth whistleblower to be charged by the Obamaadministration under the Espionage Act – more than all other administrations combined. 
GAP’s Jesselyn Radack blogged on this development this morning.
Key Quote: The Government Accountability Project, a whistleblower protection organization, blasted the indictment — the sixth criminal leak case opened under the Obama administration.
Jesselyn Radack, the organization's national security and human rights director, said the Justice Department was punishing a whistleblower under a law intended to prosecute spies and that Kiriakou was being targeted partly because of his public statements questioning the use of waterboarding.
"Back when no one was saying anything, back in 2007 when we were arguing about the validity of waterboarding, he was the only CIA official to say waterboarding was torture," she said.
Related Articles: NPRCNN

Summary: More coverage of USDA inspector whistleblowers who are speaking out about a public safety-threatening poultry inspection plan called HIMP. Three federal inspectors provided GAP's Food Integrity Campaign with affidavits detailing horrific problems at HIMP plants like the speeding up of inspections lines (to up to 10,000 birds per hour per inspector), and only being allowed to see the backside of the bird (not the front, where the breast meat is).
Key Quote: Three USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service inspectors submitted the affidavits to the nonprofit whistleblower groupGovernment Accountability Project, which claims the proposal to  expand an existing pilot program aimed at streamlining inspections would in fact allow for more “self-policing” in the poultry industry.
Related Article: The Consumerist

Summary: This RT segment criticizes the US for supporting Internet freedom around the world, but then attempting to shut down sites it disagrees with, like WikiLeaks. State Department whistleblower and GAP client Peter Van Buren is quoted.
Key Quote: “Because WikiLeaks published documents which embarrassed the American government in many ways, WikiLeaks becomes the enemy,” a former employee of the US State Department, Peter van Buren, told RT.

Summary: Longtime BP whistleblower Kenneth Abbott is now charging that the oil company lied to the government about the design of the Atlantis oil platform (near where the Deepwater Horizon disaster happened) being approved by registered engineers.

Summary: The National Organization for Marriage (NOM), an anti-same-sex marriage group, is calling for an investigation of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and the Internal Revenue Service after HRC released a NOM 2008 IRS tax return. HRC says the document was received from a whistleblower, and is not providing any further information. This comes less than two weeks after HRC released other internal NOM documents obtained through an investigation by the state of Maine into alleged improper campaign finance practices by NOM.

Summary: Two former employees of a Connecticut health center have filed whistleblower complaints with the state health agency, claiming that they were fired after reporting the mishandling of a tuberculosis case and mismanagement of funds to authorities.

Hannah Johnson is Communications Associate for the Government Accountability Project, the nation's leading whistleblower protection and advocacy organization.

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