Iran/Iraq & Nukes: Is it All Happening Again?
This is a sick joke. According to a new lawsuit, a CIA official who got it right on Iraq says the agency suppressed his findings when he challenged the consensus that Iran was building a nuclear weapon. Joby Warrick reports for The Washington Post:
The onetime undercover agent, who has been barred by the CIA from using his real name, filed a motion in federal court late Friday asking the government to declassify legal documents describing what he says was a deliberate suppression of findings on Iran that were contrary to agency views at the time.
The former operative alleged in a 2004 lawsuit that the CIA fired him after he repeatedly clashed with senior managers over his attempts to file reports that challenged the conventional wisdom about weapons of mass destruction in the Middle East. Key details of his claim have not been made public because they describe events the CIA deems secret.
These can be maddening stories to report. Roy Kreiger and Mark Zaid, attorneys to many a screwed-over agency employee or military officer, do good work in trying to move their clients’ cases forward, but the agency claims everything under the sun is a matter of national security, so determining the facts is arduous, if not impossible.
It’s not clear to me if this is the same case that Marcy Wheeler wrote about here — that is, Doe v. Goss from 2005 — but, if not, the pattern is the same in both cases, and in many others: agency receives politically inconvenient information, agency smears provider of said information, provider’s career is up in flames.
The informant provided secret evidence that Tehran had halted its research into designing and building a nuclear weapon. Yet, when the operative sought to file reports on the findings, his attempts were “thwarted by CIA employees,” according to court papers. Later he was told to “remove himself from any further handling” of the informant, the documents say.
In the months after the conflict, the operative became the target of two internal investigations, one of them alleging an improper sexual relationship with a female informant, and the other alleging financial improprieties. Krieger said his client cooperated with investigators in both cases and the allegations of wrongdoing were never substantiated. Krieger contends in court documents that the investigations were a “pretext to discredit.”
So much for the endless assurances that the agency isn’t back to its bad old tricks of tailoring its intelligence to its political masters.