Report: FBI Translater Sibel Edmonds Improperly Terminated

The Inspector General's summary report on FBI translater Sibel Edmonds is out. It finds she was fired for reporting misconduct. The ACLU, which represented Edmonds, says (in press release to be online soon):

According to today’s summary, the Inspector General’s investigation found that many of Edmonds’ claims “were supported, that the FBI did not take them seriously enough, and that her allegations were, in fact, the most significant factor in the FBI’s decision to terminate her services.....the Inspector General states, “By terminating Edmonds’ services, in large part because of her allegations of misconduct, the FBI’s actions also may have the effect of discouraging others from raising concerns.”

There's more discredit to the FBI contained in the report summary:

The Inspector General’s summary also criticizes the agency for not investigating Edmonds’ allegations more thoroughly, comparing the FBI’s mishandling of Edmonds’ allegations to the mishandling of the case involving former FBI counterintelligence agent Robert Hanssen, who pled guilty to spying for the Soviet Union. The summary states that Edmonds’ claims “raised serious concerns that, if true, could potentially have extremely damaging consequences for the FBI.

ACLU's Associate Legal Director Ann Beeson says,

“The Inspector General report leaves no doubt that John Ashcroft hid behind the state secrets privilege to cover up serious wrongdoing within the FBI....The government’s drastic actions to deny Ms. Edmonds her right to a day in court make a mockery of national security and the Constitution. Government employees who risk their careers to expose breaches in national security or misconduct are true American patriots and should be applauded, not punished.”

More on Edmunds case from the ACLU is available here.

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    The government is really good at shooting itself in the foot over national security where translators are concerned, such as when it discharged 20 Arabic, 16 Korean and 6 Farsi translators under Don't Ask Don't Tell Don't Pursue when the translators neither told nor were they asked; they were just pursued.

    Re: Report: FBI Translater Sibel Edmonds Improperl (none / 0) (#2)
    by Richard Aubrey on Fri Jan 14, 2005 at 01:14:03 PM EST
    Sibel's offense seems to have been to point out that the FBI had shaky people in some of its sensitive sections and had, 1, failed to keep themselves from hiring them, and, 2, failed to get rid of them, and, 3, insisted that Jews speaking the same languages not be hired so as to avoid offending the translators already on the payroll who were screwing the pooch in favor of our enemies. Sibel committed the worst of the federal crimes; She made the FBI look incompetent.

    Re: Report: FBI Translater Sibel Edmonds Improperl (none / 0) (#4)
    by scarshapedstar on Fri Jan 14, 2005 at 06:18:39 PM EST
    Well, at least it's not like lives depended on her work or anything! ...oh, wait. Well, at least this stupid attempt to let Americans die (what other reason could there be?) failed. Or maybe it didn't, for all I know she was translating intel in Iraq. Surely I can take comfort in the fact that those responsible for this unbelievable idiocy will be... uh... okay, there's really nothing good to say about this story, except that in four years we will just scratch our heads and wonder what the hell went wrong for the past 8 years.

    Re: Report: FBI Translater Sibel Edmonds Improperl (none / 0) (#5)
    by Richard Aubrey on Fri Jan 14, 2005 at 08:10:53 PM EST
    No, Scar, they won't. That's not the FBI way. Anyway, the pc police had them buffaloed. The accredited victims' group which howls loudest gets the grease and in the last five years or so, it's been the Muslims. There were assertions from field folks showing positive direction not to be looking to closely at Muslims, despite clearly suspicious activity.

    Re: Report: FBI Translater Sibel Edmonds Improperl (none / 0) (#6)
    by Richard Aubrey on Fri Jan 14, 2005 at 08:11:17 PM EST
    for "to" read "too".

    file has now been delivered to Spitzer and Robert Morganthau, Manhattan District Attorney.