Broken Oversight, Investigations & Justice Dept. Affect Whistleblowers
I recently, received an email from the group administrator of a
Whistleblower group I belong to chastising the group members about
only sending in posts of direct implication and interest to
whistleblowers, not notes on general corruption etc. This post is
about the problem of focus and scope of the focus and why the
patterns of corruption we see are indeed most germane to every
whistleblower, and everyone else who cares about integrity in
government and industry.
Advice from effective investigators: keep a broad focus while
digging for the details; follow the money, search for patterns and
connections. The problem may be bigger than you think.
One has to wonder about the true depth of manipulation of the various
arms of our Justice Department. It appears that there has been quite
a lot of this lately. I mean by that, finding that the FBI and
others have been turned away from certain cases, or types of cases,
and put onto selected other more politically convenient lines of investigation.
Another part of the pattern of operations by the current
Administration or their minions appears to be effective use of a “red
herring” as it gets investigators off chasing other demons, and helps
divert public attention from dangerous ground. I have heard from some
DoD whistleblowers that their experiences have included: having initial response of shock and indignation over the merits of the cases taken to law enforcement/ investigative personnel (Justice and others) agencies. That followed by investigations purposefully initiated with great energy and resolve by field personnel accompanied by check backs and good communication, only to have those law enforcement/investigative personnel, inexplicably after
a few weeks, become quite mute.
These whistleblowers have further explained that they have discovered the following kinds of things have occurred:
a. Investigators were told to stop by higher ups, sometimes
quite a bit higher levels of management.
b. Investigators were loaded down with other work and told their
priorities, which did not include the whistleblower case of concern.
c. Investigators were removed from the case and another
investigator, in one case a very senior investigator are put on it
instead, one who appeared to be on marching orders to drag it out,
obstruct the investigation and make it “go away.”
d. The whistleblowers have also reported that even though well
developed cases were turned over to the appropriate three or four
letter acronym agencies for criminal investigations, including lists
of people to be interviewed, deposed, or subpoenaed, no contacts by
the investigator now in charge to interview or communicate with those
witnesses with further evidence whatsoever.
e. In one case, the investigator ignored a list of a dozen
witnesses, and spoke instead to an employee in an involved
department, who was new, and obviously had no history and no
knowledge of the case, which many other employees with more seniority
and experience did have knowledge of, and were listed in the
witness/source list that the investigator chose to ignore. The
investigator in this case was quoted, as saying the reason the case
was not going anywhere was that “No one will talk to me.” In the
mean time, the whistleblowers were informed by the witnesses on the
list waiting to tell what they knew, that no one had contacted them.
They understandably expressed frustration that the case was not being
It seems that many view things a bit myopically. This is somewhat
understandable due to the level of stress and pressure most
whistleblowers feel, and the lack of energy and time may have to
research and reflect while in the slowly heating pot surrounding
their own particular situation. Good communication and a broader
view are necessary.
This is not about just one whistleblower. The problems we are having are not limited only to one agency or area. The stories that do break are symptomatic of a much bigger problem. A problem created not in small part by the corruption and excesses of those who have been in powerful positions of influence and control, and position to profit from those corruptions and
excesses. Justice and law enforcement are not being allowed to function like they are supposed to and that is affecting all of us, particularly “whistleblowers.”