Tuesday, December 13, 2016
Government Watchdog Conducting New Investigation Into Pentagon Whistleblower Retaliation
THE WATCHDOG WING of Congress has quietly launched an investigation into the “integrity” of the Pentagon’s whistleblower protection program. The previously unreported investigation, started in late October, expands on an ongoing effort by the Department of Justice on this same issue.
The Government Accountability Office, which serves as the investigative arm of Congress, has been looking into the extent to which Department of Defense whistleblower policies “meet executive branch policies and goals,” reassure employees of their rights to raise concerns “without fear of reprisal,” and require officials to report to Congress, among several other areas of concern.
The nonprofit Government Accountability Project, which is devoted to protecting whistleblowers, provided The Intercept with documentation on the new investigation. According to the group, the investigation will also likely target senior Pentagon officials accused of destroying evidence that would have exculpated former senior NSA official Thomas Drake, who raised internal complaints about what he believed to be NSA misconduct and waste before ultimately approaching journalists.