Welcome Sibel Edmonds (ClassifiedWoman) (BoilingFrogs) and Host Kevin Gosztola (FDL/TheDissenter)

Classified Woman -The Sibel Edmonds Story: A Memoir

In his first term, President Barack Obama has gained a reputation as someone who has waged an unprecedented war on whistleblowing. A statistic frequently cited is that the administration has pursued prosecutions against six whistleblowers or alleged “leakers,” more than all previous presidential administrations combined. Individuals like NSA whistleblower Thomas Drake or Pfc. Bradley Manning, the soldier alleged to have released classified information to WikiLeaks, have gained notoriety for being pursued by the Obama administration. What has received less focus is the way that the administration has allowed prepublication review boards to be used to prevent whistleblowers’ stories of government malfeasance from being told.

Classified Woman: A Memoir is a stirring book that takes us through the injustice Edmonds has endured starting during the Bush Administration. In her job as a language specialist, she finds out the FBI has been covering up information related to the September 11th attacks. She figures out the FBI has been penetrated by a Turkish translator named Melek Can Dickerson and her husband, who have engaged in illegal transactions that involve shielding potential targets from intelligence operations. She realizes any investigation of Dickerson would “shine a light on major cover-ups initiated by the State Department ” and expose crimes committed by “high-placed US officials.” She feels uneasy but knows she cannot turn back. And so she decides to pursue appropriate channels to let the proper people know all this but is forced to choose between having a career and pursuing accountability.

The retaliation is immediate. Her supervisor Stephanie Bryan explicitly tries, in a passive aggressive way, to dissuade her from taking action:

…Things work differently in government. While private companies are concerned with efficiency, security and productivity, the government couldn’t care less. Of course, the jobs here come with other pluses: less work, more benefits, retirement…You need to know a little about some policies that are followed religiously in the FBI. Policy one: one for all, all for one. Policy two: problems and embarrassments are always swept under the rug—always. They don’t want to know about the serious and embarrassing problems, no matter how scandalous. They don’t want people reporting these types of issues and cases: especially on the record, in writing.

Bryan informs her the memo she wrote containing her findings that she sent to people higher up in the translation department was produced on her computer and violated “security rules” because the memo contained classified information. Despite the fact that Bryan instructed her to “prepare the memo at home,” she is told to go meet with an agent, Melinda Tilton, who is investigating her. Tilton cannot detect any “malice” involved and sees no reason why Edmonds needs to be investigated.

In the coming days, coworkers treat her as if she is a criminal. Then she is informed the FBI wants a “full-blown investigation” and plans to seize her home computer, which her husband also uses. She asserts her privacy rights and forces them to get a subpoena, making them even more resolute in their pursuit.

She is in London in October 2002 celebrating her ten-year wedding anniversary with her husband. Her husband insists she only check her emails once a day. On the second day, she checks her email and sees an email from her attorney with “very urgent” in the subject line. The email is a notice to Edmonds that Attorney General John Ashcroft is invoking state secrets privilege “to prevent disclosure of certain classified and sensitive national security information. Not only does the Justice Department invoke this privilege on behalf of FBI Director Robert Mueller, but they also file a motion to dismiss the case because “litigation” could create “substantial risks of disclosing classified and sensitive national security information that could cause serious damage” to America’s security. (Note: At the time, a Google search only produces seven hits when one searches for state secrets privilege. As Edmonds’ proceeds in her battle against the American state, that number will increase tremendously.)

The authoritarianism escalates: in 2004, Ashcroft issues an order to “retroactively classify anything that has been said, written, any letters or statements to the media and public, by any member of the House and the Senate.” Edmonds issues a statement that says the Justice Department is gagging Congress. In 2005, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is now defending her in the courts. They have an appellate court hearing. The hearing is closed. No press allowed. Her lawyers state their arguments for the court. And then, absurdly, Edmonds and her lawyers were told to leave the courtroom so that the defense could make their case. (She writes in the book, “Even Kafka would have been shocked.”)

The small possibility of being heard in the Supreme Court exists after that, but it is clear all roads have been closed. What has happened now establishes her case as the “most egregious case of unjustified secrecy and classification” in history, establishing her as “the most gagged woman in the known history” of the United States. She has had her First Amendment right taken away. She has had her Fourth Amendment right, her right to due process and access to the courts taken away.

The book recounts a truly alarming story. Even more stunning, however, is the fact she had to wait over a year to get the book published. The FBI sought to use their prepublication review board to keep her account of what happened to her from reaching the public.

Edmonds was never under threat of being convicted for leaking because she did not go to reporters first. She did what most Americans would expect good government employees to do. And yet, that made her an enemy of the State.

The suppression she endured and the fact that the United States government now wages a wide war on leaks to preserve government secrecy makes Edmonds’ book a timely read and one crucial to understanding the extent that the federal government will go to keep the public in the dark on how it is handling and preserving so-called national security.

 

[As a courtesy to our guests, please keep comments to the book and be respectful of dissenting opinions. Please take other conversations to a previous thread. - bev]

155 Responses to “FDL Book Salon Welcomes Sibel Edmonds, Classified Woman: The Sibel Edmonds Story – A Memoir”

BevW June 30th, 2012 at 1:53 pm

Sibel, Welcome to the Lake.

Kevin, Thank you for Hosting today’s Book Salon.

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 1:58 pm

Hello Bev & Kevin, thank you. It is an honor.

dakine01 June 30th, 2012 at 2:02 pm

Good afternoon Sibel and welcome to Firedoglake this afternoon.

Good afternoon Kevin!

Sibel, when you started the process for this book, did you have any anticipation that the Obama Admin would respond as it has?

Which admin between Bush and Obama has caused the most problems for you?

(I spent a couple of years as a direct Federal/DoD employee and another ten years as a contractor in DoD acquisitions and those folks identified as “whistelblowers: have always been my heroes)

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 2:02 pm
In response to BevW @ 1

Hello, Bev. Is the power back on for you after the storms?

Hey, Sibel, how are you doing? I know you were hit by the storm. We really appreciate you making time today to join us for a discussion.

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 2:04 pm

Welcome Sibel. Wow! What a book. I couldn’t put it down. One night I got only 4 hours sleep and not much more the next night.

BevW June 30th, 2012 at 2:04 pm
In response to Kevin Gosztola @ 4

Power still off, living in hotel for the weekend, hope to be home by Monday.

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:05 pm
In response to dakine01 @ 3

Thanks Dakine.

I did not have high expectations for Obama Admin. However, the level of secrecy and retaliations against WBs far exceeded my expectations. For me, and for over 100 whistleblowers I represent, this administration has been worse-by far. Very alarming, and unfortunate.

maadcet June 30th, 2012 at 2:05 pm

What got into you to go through all this trouble and an uphill battle. Were you really put in a situation that you decided to fight back

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:06 pm
In response to Kevin Gosztola @ 4

Hello Kevin, we were hit hard, and very unexpectedly! No phone lines and no internet connection. Just got my wireless back-spotty!

DWBartoo June 30th, 2012 at 2:06 pm

Sibel, thank you for joining us.

Kevin, thank you for everything you do (you are an invaluable resource, here at FDL).

DW

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 2:07 pm

So people are familiar with your background – why did you join the FBI? And, can you briefly get into your thoughts when you first joined the FBI?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:08 pm

maadcet: It just went through stages-no big moments. Initially, it was a simple internal reporting, then up to HQ (Mueller), then congress … courts…IG …and with each step the retaliation got escalated. Gag orders, followed by State Secrets Privilege, then gag on congress, exclusion from court hearings ….

bluewombat June 30th, 2012 at 2:10 pm

Welcome to the Lake, Ms. Edmonds, and kudos for your courage, persistence and even patriotism (in the old-fashioned sense of the word.)

To the extent you can talk about this, what angle were the Turkish couple in the FBI’s translation division working? What was the nature of the threat they posed?

TarheelDem June 30th, 2012 at 2:10 pm

Sibel, welcome to Firedoglake. And thanks Kevin for hosting.

Could you comment on how the media enables the government to dodge accountability.

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:10 pm
In response to Kevin Gosztola @ 11

Why did I join the FBI? One reason: they contacted me 3 days after 9/11, they said our nation needed my linguistic skills urgently/badly.I never thought/planned of becoming a translator. I only took that job (as a contractor)to help our nation-at least that was what I thought-initially.

nonplussed June 30th, 2012 at 2:11 pm

Hi, Sibel! Thank you for coming here today! As a longtime fan, I can’t wait to read your book.

Gitcheegumee June 30th, 2012 at 2:11 pm

Good afternoon and best wishes to all.

Ms. Edmonds, it is indeed a rare privilege to have the opportunity to thank you for your efforts and your perseverance.How notable that so many whistleblowers happen to be women…but I digress.

I have followed your story for quite some time now. Do you feel vindicated at this point?

And what events/revelations-if any- have occured in this interim time that you feel is the MOST compelling evidence of your “whistleblowing”?

Thank you in advance for any replies.

maadcet June 30th, 2012 at 2:12 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 12

Did anything come out of the hearing in OHIO congressional race your deposition despite the gag order. Were you able to tell the whole story you wanted to

nonplussed June 30th, 2012 at 2:12 pm

Will you consider any further involvement in politics?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:13 pm
In response to bluewombat @ 13

The husband, Douglas Dickerson, worked under Wolfowitz (directly under Douglas Feith). He was part of a multi-national ring involved in treasonous activities against US security/interests.

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 2:13 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 7

Yes, you write in the book:

…Unfortunately for me, Obama’s presidency was no cause to celebrate. Certainly he “looked and talked” better than his opponents, but that was where differences ended. I had dealt with Obama’s Senate office, and we as national security whistleblowers also had “tried” to work with his office—all to no avail. He was as anti-whistleblower, anti-transparency and anti-accountability as they come, along with many of his colleagues there, including Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton…

bluewombat June 30th, 2012 at 2:15 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 20

Ah, thanks for your answer. This leads me to my next, quasi-tin-foil-hat question: Do you think members of the Bush crew were in any way complicit in 9/11?

TarheelDem June 30th, 2012 at 2:15 pm

Which members of Congress were open to whistleblowers, transparency, accountability? Are there any?

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 2:16 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 20

Following up on this question—

What was the most striking discovery you found in your work? What would you say cemented your conviction that you had to, no matter what, pursue an investigation or accountability for what was happening in the FBI?

(Or maybe it wasn’t what you found but that people in the FBI immediately began to fight you when you went through the proper channels.)

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:16 pm
In response to TarheelDem @ 14

Of the four branches (yes, I consider media to be the fourth, media plays the most important role. In fact, it makes retaliation, lack of acountability, possible. It allows congress to dodge responsibility (as it has done for the last 11 years). It allows the court to remain ‘dependent.’ It brings about public apathy. And without public outrage, without congress having to look over their shoulder, the governments become tyrannies-unaccountable-police state.

DWBartoo June 30th, 2012 at 2:18 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 25

Well said.

DW

maadcet June 30th, 2012 at 2:18 pm
In response to maadcet @ 18

Are you allowed to talk about the “Proxy War” in Afghanistan or still under the gag order. Any hope of discussing the subject some time in the future

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 2:18 pm

Is the documentary out yet that the two French film makers were filming of you?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:19 pm
In response to Kevin Gosztola @ 21

We all remember President Obama’promises during his campaign-some of them on record (signed pledge to WB organizations). On the other hand, prior to his campaign his office was one of he most irresponsive offices in the Senate. Whenever Sen. Grassley/Leahy reached out to him on WB protection proposals, they got ‘no’-every single time.

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:21 pm
In response to TarheelDem @ 23

In rhetoric-several. In practice-none. Senate: Grassley/Leahy, but again, in rhetorics only-lip service/showoff. In congress, before 2007, while Democrats minority, we had strong supporters such as Rep.Waxman. Then, after the elections, once in power, they turned their back on WBs, transparency and gov accountability…

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:24 pm
In response to Kevin Gosztola @ 24

It was the fact that State Dep & CIA were actually working with so-called terror groups in Turkey/Central Asia & caucasus; thus, they were hindering/blocking FBI investigations. People know about our shady partnerships during the Cold War (80s Afghan War), however, these operations and partnerships continued throughout the 90s, and even months after 9/11.

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:25 pm
In response to maadcet @ 27

My direct info/first hand info on this is limited to years 1996-2002 (February). Since then, what I know is based on

bluewombat June 30th, 2012 at 2:26 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 30

The domestic equivalent of that was John Conyers making a lot of noise about Bush admin. offenses while ranking minority member on the House Judiciary but not going within a country mile of impeachment when he became committee chairman.

Might you like to take a bite at my question in No. 22, or is it too out-there for your taste?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:26 pm

…research, sources…

SamHolloway June 30th, 2012 at 2:26 pm

Good discussion, sorry to have missed it. Thanks to Kevin for hosting and to Sibel Edmonds for joining the discussion. I’m a subscriber over at Boiling Frogs Post, and I highly recommend it to everyone.

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 2:27 pm

I was very moved by you’re writing about how you and your husband were saddened by what this country has become and were considering moving. Did your trip to New Zealand take you any closer or further away from leaving?

BearCountry June 30th, 2012 at 2:28 pm

Thanks, Sibel for all that you have done and are doing. Thanks to you, Kevin, in the same way.

It seems that so many of my heroes are women, and I count you, Sibel, among them. I have not gotten the book yet; I have asked our library to get it because I suspect that most people want to put your story on the back burner. If it is right out in the library, it may encourage some to read it who would otherwise not be familiar with your story.

I knew ahead of time that 0 was not a savior, but I didn’t expect him to be this bad.

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:28 pm
In response to maadcet @ 18

maadcet: not really.There was a complete/blanket media blackout on this/my sworn deposition. It will be among many historical records for future generation to look at and marvel, maybe?

CTuttle June 30th, 2012 at 2:28 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 20

Aloha, Sibel…! Mahalo for being here today, and all your tireless ongoing efforts at exposing the Cabal…! I enjoy your Boiling Frogs blog too…!

You note that you were a ‘contractor’ for the FBI, how much of our vast Intel/MIC/DHS apparatchik do you think has been ‘out-sourced’ to private corporations…? Dr. RJ Hillhouse has once put the estimate at 70% Green Tags to 30% Blue Taggers…!

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 2:28 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 30

This comes out in the book. You went into a secure facility with Waxman and his chief legal advisor said, “Before you go any further, were there any Democrats involved in this?” You tell him a few and he responds, “We have to stop here and not go any further. We don’t want to know. Not at this point. We’ll wait for the IG report and after that contact you to come again.”

maadcet June 30th, 2012 at 2:29 pm

Your views on late Paul Newman. He had such high admiration for you

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 2:31 pm

Sibel,

I quote this section in my introductory post. It is definitely worth explicitly calling attention to here in the comments thread:

…Things work differently in government. While private companies are concerned with efficiency, security and productivity, the government couldn’t care less. Of course, the jobs here come with other pluses: less work, more benefits, retirement…You need to know a little about some policies that are followed religiously in the FBI. Policy one: one for all, all for one. Policy two: problems and embarrassments are always swept under the rug—always. They don’t want to know about the serious and embarrassing problems, no matter how scandalous. They don’t want people reporting these types of issues and cases: especially on the record, in writing…

What do you find so striking about this psyche among people in bureaucracies? My gut is it is very pervasive in government institutions. Why?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:32 pm
In response to greenwarrior @ 36

greenwarrior: closer. It is not NZ that brings that about. It is the state of our nation. As a child I was moved from one country to another, and to another, to escape tyranny/police state practices. I never thought I’d be going through that again. You know, government/media I can take on and continue to fight, but public apathy, the apathy of the majority, I cannot. I am not a big fan of Ms. Clinton, but one line I must repeat: it takes an entire village. The executive, the congress, courts, and the media … sure, but most importantly, it is the people-the majority that becomes so accustumed and desensitized ….

DWBartoo June 30th, 2012 at 2:33 pm

Considering what you have experienced and come to learn, might you be willing to speculate a wee bit regarding the future? As you say, we now face, our civil society now faces, a government well on the way to full-blown tyranny, we have seen the rule of law completely trampled, regarding torture, drones, fraudulent, criminal Bankers and Wall Street Wonders. We anticipate “endless” war and are engaged in clandestine warfare in scores of nations … our jobs have been outsourced and the middle class under unrelenting assault, indeed, we are, if we are honest, victims of another “t” word which few dare utter … and most dare not consider.

What do you see, “looking forward”, as the future of this nation and society, realizing that it might take a decade or two before the majority of “the people” comprehend what has happened?

I am particularly concerned with how long other peoples and nations may tolerate our destructive philosophies and clear intent to “procure”, by any means, world domination.

Thank you, Sibel, for any response you might care to share.

DW

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 2:35 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 43

yes, this country has a feel about it like Germany becoming ripe for Hitler’s take over.

maadcet June 30th, 2012 at 2:36 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 38

Any thoughts on bypassing the media and going through alternatives like Democracy now or other activist channels to expose the real story on Ohio Congresswoman and thus real scam

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:36 pm
In response to Kevin Gosztola @ 40

Thank you for bringing this up, Kevin. That meeting in SCIF was my last i Congress on my case. I was so disgusted-I gave up on congress at that point. Waxman’s staff were drooling over ‘nasties’ on people like Hastert. And there were plenty of those ‘nasties.’ However, there were a few nasties from ‘D’ side as well. Also, the main files/operations I blew the whistle on covered both administrations: Clinton & Bush.The moment they found out about that-they abruptly ended the meeting, and said ‘say no more!’

bluewombat June 30th, 2012 at 2:39 pm

Well, let’s try another question: You testified before the 9/11 Commission, but your testimony wasn’t included in the final report. Why not?

DWBartoo June 30th, 2012 at 2:40 pm
In response to bluewombat @ 48

Superb question, bluewombat.

DW

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:40 pm
In response to Kevin Gosztola @ 42

You know why, Kevin? Because there is this ‘bottomless’ tax dollars that will be pouring into the government no matter what, and then, there is a congress that has given a blank check to these agencies (zero accountability-do you remember the last time anyone was held accountable at these agencies?? Torture? Billions in waste? Illegal eavesdropping??), and of course, there is the media that acts as the extension of the government. It boils down to: because they can. Because they have become the ultimate power, unaccountable to no one, un-exposed (thanks to the media), and to top that, the majority that accepts it as such.

pj98rider June 30th, 2012 at 2:41 pm

Sibel, In the book, you speak about the toll this all took and you hit some pretty low points. Are you feeling stronger these days and what’s up for the near future?

BearCountry June 30th, 2012 at 2:41 pm

It is obvious to those of us paying attention that we have the one party with infighting for domination. There is no real separation between them because they are both accountable to their monied masters.

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 2:41 pm

Are you able to have contact now with your family? Your mom and sisters? Have you stayed close with Daniel Ellsberg?

TarheelDem June 30th, 2012 at 2:42 pm

Was your supervisor Stephanie Bryan an employee of the contracting firm or the FBI?

Things work differently in government. While private companies are concerned with efficiency, security and productivity,

I ask because this sounds so much like a private sector statement and because I know from experience that private companies are exactly like the government in this respect.

And to what extent did that reflect FBI attitudes that are the legacy of J Edgar Hoover?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:43 pm
In response to DWBartoo @ 44

It is also global. Look at UK (their surveillance practices/laes, their secrecy laws, their participation in rendition/torture…), look at one of the once liberal Sweden: their participation in rendition, etc. Basically,we have the entire Western nations. What gives us hope: movements such as Occupy, alternative media sites such as FDL, whistleblowers…

Yet, why do I feel so pessimistic?

SamHolloway June 30th, 2012 at 2:43 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 47

Sibel, thanks for being here. I’m finding the same things you’ve found, primarily regarding the partisanship and the apathy. It seems even some of the most keen liberal political minds out there are largely silent in the face of malfeasance of Obama and the Democrats, even as they spent the previous eight years calling for the heads of the Bush administration for much the same behavior. Call this to their attention and you are likely greeted with ‘would you prefer the Republicans in charge?’, as though the differences haven’t been narrowing by the minute.

I also find that mention of your name, Sibel, draws blank stares (or digital equivalents) from those same liberals, much as they greet mention of Bradley Manning with indifference or scorn.

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 2:45 pm
In response to TarheelDem @ 54

Sibel, my understanding from reading the book is that you were an employee of the FBI directly. Is that correct?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:45 pm
In response to maadcet @ 46

I don’t have any first-hand info on Schmidt. That deposition was on related Turkish organization/lobby/criminal rings, and their partners at State Dep & Pentagon. Schmidt got in congress after I was out of FBI.

bluewombat June 30th, 2012 at 2:46 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 55

Yet, why do I feel so pessimistic?

Probably because you’re a realist.

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:48 pm
In response to BearCountry @ 52

Look, this is how I sum up our democracy/elections: There is 1, only ONE, establishment, they pick two of their favorite puppets, one is tagged ‘D’ the other ‘R.’ They present these two picks, and say, ‘okay, now you get to choose between the two, and we’ll call it a democracy.’ This goes to the macro issues, diseases we face: 1- Campaign finance laws/process (money/corporates decide who), 2- two-party system

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 2:48 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 50

What I was trying to get at goes beyond the reality that they can. And maybe it’s a bit like, “Which came first the chicken or the egg?” but let me ask this:

Do people operate with this psyche because of what can happen to people like you who take on the agency or institution and try to reform it from within? I mean, the big thing about your case is, unlike these other leaks prosecutions, you didn’t go to reporters or any media organization until you had exhausted all options. Right? Yet the agency still decided to clamp down on you. That sends a clear signal to government employees.

BearCountry June 30th, 2012 at 2:49 pm

Sibel, how has all of this affected your husband? Is he at all optimistic?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:50 pm
In response to bluewombat @ 48

Because my testimony challenged their made-up story, and it introduced home-made collaborators. But I was not the only one: 1- They refused to interview FBI’s Coleen Rowley, 2- hey censored FBI Agent John Cole’s testimony, 3- They blacked out Lt. Col. Shaffer’s testimony ….over 3 dozens of FBI/CIA/Pentagon insiders were turned away or censored. Why?

tuezday June 30th, 2012 at 2:52 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 60

You should stop by the Lake more often; you fit right in. Thanks for all you do. Lady, you have guts.

bluewombat June 30th, 2012 at 2:53 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 63

2- [T]hey censored FBI Agent John Cole’s testimony, 3- They blacked out Lt. Col. Shaffer’s testimony

These names are new to me. Can you tell us who they are, and what they might have talked about?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:54 pm
In response to pj98rider @ 51

Like many, I have my up moments followed by down moments. Manic-depressive-manic-depressive: energized and hopeful-then, disgusted-tired-and pessimistic… Take Bradley Manning for example: what does it say for the state of our nation? Thomas Drake? Or our given choices: Obama & Romney.

BUT, right now, when I am exposed to the Irate Minority, FDL & the participants here, I feel ‘up.’ It is good to know we are not alone. It oly takes ‘Irate minority’-Yes?

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 2:55 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 55

By being a whistle blower you’ve had the distinction of feeling the full weight our government can bring to bear on those who “interfere” by trying right the wrongs that actually endanger us. You had so much hope for so long that the US would actually be shown to be a working democracy and be different from the countries in which you were raised. I’m guessing it’s particularly hard for you to recognize that this country is descending into the opposite.

I know it’s hard for me. I lost my illusions about the benevolence of my government at a young age in my early twenties. However, watching what’s been happening in the last ten years is truly horrifying.

BearCountry June 30th, 2012 at 2:56 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 63

The “why” is easy to answer: the 9/11 commission was a cover-up, not a real investigation. There is all kinds of real evidence that is known, but even people not friendly to bush and his admin are not willing to look at it. I will not recount the evidence, but many people I know give many excuses for not following up on legitimate questions that have been raised.

bluewombat June 30th, 2012 at 2:57 pm

I would like to make a request of all FDL’ers participating in this thread:

You can help Ms. Edmonds’ cause by calling on Congress to push for the declassification and release of the 2004 Department of Justice Inspector General’s (DOJ-IG) investigation into charges made by Ms. Edmonds.

Just go to her site, http://www.justacitizen.com, scroll down to “Contact Congress,” copy the message she’s written there, and send it to your member of Congress and senators.

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:58 pm
In response to greenwarrior @ 53

For the first question … I have found a way to remotely stay in touch. I cannot go back.

Ellsberg: yes. He has been (as always) very active and supportive of WBs such as Manning. It meant so much when he came to stand by me during my court battles, while under siege …This is why it is so important for people to show support for WBs when it is them vs. the monsterous gov/establishment.
During my ordeal, I’d get an e-mail or a letter rom a spporter, and that would provide me with the needed strength to carry on…

DWBartoo June 30th, 2012 at 2:58 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 55

I consider that the pessimism we all may feel must be balanced by an understanding that those of us here, right now, and many others … have been preparing all of our lives for just this reality.

Frankly, I have been very concerned with the “health” of this nation for well more than half a century, beginning in the middle sixties when I came to understand that this nation was losing the ability to actually create wealth. I did not realize then, that it was intentional, but I had already learned that an American intellectual elite had determined, even before this nation’s entry into WW II, that America would become the dominant nation, in the world, militarily and economically.

And now, the self-selected elites have no need, they imagine, of a civil society, no need of a “middle class”, no need of “democracy”, in any real sense, certainly.

You are correct, of course, it IS world-wide, and the human world has come to a great divide, between those who consider themselves to be more like others than not, to share basic fundamental human needs, values, and concerns, and those who do not consider themselves to be like others, but rather, above and beyond those “others”.

In our pessimism, which is not total nor all-consuming, let us not lose sight of the impact our courage and tenacity have upon others, yours most definitely has such impact on the rest of us, and perhaps, we may yet give you cause to embrace an optimism because you know that you are appreciated and that you inspire others to courage and the seeking of truth.

We have a word, introduced by a well-respected wisdom at FDL, it is “Namaste” …

I offer it to you, Sibel …

Namaste

DW

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 2:59 pm

Last week at the neighborhood book club, when we were talking about potential selections for July, I mentioned your book and said a little about it. It wound up that we’ll be reading it for July 26. If you’ve always wanted to visit Austin, Texas in July, I know you won’t be preaching to the choir. Most of the book club members are good Obama democrats with no knowledge of what all’s been going on. I’d be happy to fluff up the pillows in the guest room if you’d like to come.

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 2:59 pm
In response to tuezday @ 64

You are right. I started doing that a few months ago, after I discovered the site and its coverage of WBs. One of very, by that I mean ‘VERY,’ few media sites that does it, and it does so without patisan taint/spin.

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 3:01 pm
In response to bluewombat @ 69

Thanks for posting this call to action.

thatvisionthing June 30th, 2012 at 3:02 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 70

They said California Dem primary vote went 100% to Obama, but that’s not true, I wrote in Daniel Ellsberg for President. :-)

Are you still gagged? (Your book is published)

And any thoughts on who to vote for, or voting strategies?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 3:02 pm
In response to SamHolloway @ 56

Exactly. One of the most painful experiences I’ve had: having several quasi liberal websites/media turn on me the moment I began publicly criticizing Obama administration. I call that ‘quasi’ because the real liberal would not behave/operate that way.

Gitcheegumee June 30th, 2012 at 3:02 pm

Dee dub,I have said it before,I’ll say it again..your comments are pure poetry..

bluewombat June 30th, 2012 at 3:05 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 76

having several quasi liberal websites/media turn on me the moment I began publicly criticizing Obama administration.

Which ones?

zenmouser June 30th, 2012 at 3:06 pm

Sibel, If you’re still around and can answer,
Have you or any WBs you’ve known, experienced the use of dew’s as a deterrent or attempt to neutralize? Are you at all familiar with the communities reporting such activities?

DWBartoo June 30th, 2012 at 3:06 pm
In response to Gitcheegumee @ 77

Jeez bah-knees!

Gitchee, on wid ya, yer gonna make me lose muh already weakish concentration!!

;~DW

Mod Note: please keep comments on the topic of Ms Edmonds’s book

(My apologies, I shall do better, mod, I promise.)

BearCountry June 30th, 2012 at 3:07 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 76

Yes, most of the obamacrats seem still to be living in the fantasy land of a real two party system and take his campaign rhetoric as real commitment. Those of us who see him for what he is have a real hard time trying to get through their bloviating, which is as bad as what the repugs do.

RevBev June 30th, 2012 at 3:08 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 63

Are there books you would recom. that tell the “untold” story? It should still come out.

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 3:08 pm

You say in the book that you decided to adopt a child from Viet Nam. It was beautiful to read about your months of bonding with your baby before all the paperwork was completed and you could take her home. You so deserve to have that happiness of mothering a child. She must be about 4 now. I’m wondering if you could share what made you choose Viet Nam?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 3:10 pm
In response to Kevin Gosztola @ 61

Oh, I see. The government is very good, it execels at making an example of truth-tellers/whistleblowers. In my case, from agents I worked with, to many LS coworkers, I had their ‘whispered/quiet’ support. They were so scared, so intimidated. They justified lack of action, they justified ‘not doing the right thing’ by pointing to its futility. ‘Nothing will come out of it. The only thing that will come out of it is your life being ruined.’ Of course, they were ptoven right. But here is the catch (your chicken or the egg point): if they would have stood up and joined me, things could have turned out differently-positively. It is one thing for gov to target and fight one whistleblower, and another if they face a large group.

Take CIA torture example: What if two or three dozens of CIA employees walked out, went to media collectively, aka blew the whistle? What would have been the public reaction under that scenario? The media? Thus, the government? Can you imagine gov taking 50 CIA veteran officers to court?

bluewombat June 30th, 2012 at 3:11 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 63

Is John Cole the man who died in the WTC, where he was working as security director? Who was Lt. Col. Shaffer and what might he have had to say?

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 3:12 pm
In response to RevBev @ 82

Sibel’s book has quite a lot of detail in it. It’s a fascinating story, very well written and a story that really needs to be read, heard and digested.

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 3:13 pm

Sibel,

Before I expand my questions to address larger (but still related) topics, would you mind communicating to those here in the chat how shocking and dubious the invoking of the state secrets privilege was in your case? Because, your case is credited with bringing attention to a privilege that had really never been invoked or tried against people before, right?

Gitcheegumee June 30th, 2012 at 3:13 pm

Re:coworkers

One cannot substitute a wishbone for a backbone.

RevBev June 30th, 2012 at 3:14 pm
In response to greenwarrior @ 86

Thanks….Glad to know that’s part of the content.

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 3:15 pm
In response to greenwarrior @ 83

Vietnam has been my second home. The decision came after two years of research. I also took months traveling the country (north to south; east to west), and working with small medical NGOs there: Agent Orange, orphanages … I simply fell in love with it. Also, it allowed unlimited visitation with your child (while in orphanage).

Ela will be 4 in 3 weeks! I will be taking her back for a long trip next year.

thatvisionthing June 30th, 2012 at 3:16 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 84

I remember a revolt of like six retired generals during the Bush administration — hazily — can’t recall if it made a difference.

I also remember Admiral Fallon being credited for putting a stopper in Bush/Cheney’s Iran war brew, and then he was canned. I think he called it “putting the crazies back in the box” or something. And sailors on the USS Eisenhower blowing some whistle at the time.

?

RodL2 June 30th, 2012 at 3:17 pm

Hello Ms. Edmonds,
I am worried that Americans become indifferent to uncomfortable facts; for instance today people don’t care whether the CIA was involved in JFK’s assassination. When Bush declared not caring about Bin Laden, and when it was proven that Iraq had no WMD’s, there was no huge outcry of: “Why are we at war, then?” Even at the waste of lives!
Hopefully your book will change that. At any rate your courage is an inspiration, and thank you!

AitchD June 30th, 2012 at 3:18 pm
In response to bluewombat @ 33

Conyers was thoroughly chilled. After the 06 election but before the new House session, Conyers was found guilty of ethics violations for using his staff to perform personal errands. The FBI investigated, and he admitted his ‘wrongdoing’ in exchange for a slap on the wrist. He understood that he could have been charged with a federal crime since Dr. Cyril Wecht (Dem. coroner of Allegheny County) was currently under federal indictment for the same use of his staff. Also, the former Dem governor of Arkansas, Don Siegelman, was serving prison time for what Conyers surely understood were arbitrary, capricious, and Rove-promoted charges.

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 3:18 pm

Ela will be 4 in 3 weeks! I will be taking her back for a long trip next year.

Oh, that’s wonderful!

bluewombat June 30th, 2012 at 3:19 pm
In response to bluewombat @ 65

This was meant to be a response to Sibel Edmonds @ 63:

I assume John Cole is the guy who left FBI and became head of security for WTC, where he died on September 11, 2001. But who is Lt. Col. Shaffer and what might he have had to say?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 3:19 pm
In response to RevBev @ 82

RevBev: Believe me or not, the most important stories remain unold. I have several insiders who are considering political asylum in order to publish/report gov criminal operations/cases. I have others who are still stuck at PrePub review stage: I challenged the gov. They said: not a single word of your book is released/approved for publication. For others, they are afraid to lose their pension after 20+ years in gov, or, criminal prosecution.

Also,many top-tier publishers refuse to touch ‘Real’ whistleblower stories unless they are one-way-or-another approved (blessed) by the goverment. I will definitely let you know if one makes it through…

BearCountry June 30th, 2012 at 3:20 pm
In response to AitchD @ 93

Just a small correction: Siegelman was in Alabama.

RevBev June 30th, 2012 at 3:21 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 96

Thanks for all of that….in your view, is there any outside pressure coming or something that might be effective?
On Edit:
Not to joke: We have a word of warning that pops up here in dicey situations: Don’t fly in small planes. Seriously, I hope everyone is being careful….

thatvisionthing June 30th, 2012 at 3:21 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 63

Is your 9/11 testimony sealed, even if it’s not in the report? I didn’t know you testified.

BearCountry June 30th, 2012 at 3:21 pm

Maybe I’m off base here, but how has your husband been affected by all of this?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 3:23 pm

We need more than that, and we need them from every front: DOD, CIA, FBI, TSA …

Just think about mega private sector & the Unions in the past. What is required: organized, coordinated, large numbers of gov insiders. So far intimidation is winnig. Since Manning/Drake/Kriakou, we have had no new reports/whistleblowers at NSWBC. People are very scared. And that’s exactly what the gov wanted: send a message, make an example of these people, andmake it work as a strong preventive medicine for whistleblowing.

BearCountry June 30th, 2012 at 3:24 pm

Just a repeat, the 9/11 commission was designed as a cover-up, not an investigation. They were certainly not going to allow Sibel to be heard by the general public.

AitchD June 30th, 2012 at 3:27 pm
In response to BearCountry @ 97

Thanks.

Re some evidence of apathy: the FDL site hasn’t crashed from overload. *g* + ;-(

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 3:29 pm

Knowing what you know now, is there anything you’d have done differently?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 3:30 pm
In response to Kevin Gosztola @ 87

Absolutely. In fact, I was the first victim of SSP by Bush Admin, and when I went to attorneys they had no idea what in the world SSP referred to. No one had heard of it. When I googled it, I got 6 results, and 3 of them repeats.

Once my attorneys researched and found out about SSP, they thought ‘no way in hell any federal judge would let the executive get away with this. This is like the nuclear executive privilege.’ Well, they were wrong. The federal judges let the gov get away with it-they didn’t even question it-no grilling. The government didn’t even have to justify it. All they said: the justification will violate/damage state secrets. And the judges said: ‘ok.’

The saddest part: media giving this SSP invocation (twice in my case) no real coverage. I stood before the court (Appeal Court)and told the reporters/people: ‘This is a test case. Now that they are getting away with it, you’ll be seing this SSP invoked right and left …unless you fight it with me at this stage.’ And they did invoke it again, again, and again-all unchallenged.

Same thing applies to Manning case, together with NDAA. This is another test ground for the government. We sit an take it, and we’ll be seeing many Mannings, many journalists (real ones), and activists rounded up…

BearCountry June 30th, 2012 at 3:31 pm
In response to AitchD @ 103

Yes, I notice that many of the regulars are not here. I would have expected a greater turnout of Firepups than we have.

AitchD June 30th, 2012 at 3:33 pm
In response to BearCountry @ 102

One could say the same about the Libby ‘trial’.

pj98rider June 30th, 2012 at 3:34 pm
In response to BearCountry @ 106

Big vacation 2 weeks. A lot of folks on the road.

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 3:35 pm

There were a number of places in “Classified Woman” where you talk about your father as inspiration for your starting and continuing on this WB journey. Can you share some of that here?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 3:35 pm
In response to greenwarrior @ 104

YES.I would not have spent all those years naively following the so-called channels for disclosure: congress, IG, courts. I would have found a way to inform the public directly (disclosure) without violating any justifiable classified material.

I am sure I can come up with a list of things I’d have done differently. I was naive. I was like he majority. I believed in the story on how our gov supposedly functions. I have a masters degree in public policy, and a lot of things I learned there are not applicable/not true. It is theoretically what it is supposed to be. In practice: no.

CTuttle June 30th, 2012 at 3:35 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 105

Same thing applies to Manning case, together with NDAA. This is another test ground for the government. We sit an take it, and we’ll be seeing many Mannings, many journalists (real ones), and activists rounded up…

As Pogo said: We’ve met the Enemy… and He is Us…! 8-(

Dearie June 30th, 2012 at 3:35 pm

A lot of us are here, but just reading……mouth agape…….and hoping that Sibel will say more that will give us some ideas on what to do!

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 3:35 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 105

A follow-up to your answer here:

What are your thoughts on government lawyers taking on additional roles as gatekeepers for government information? Coombs has been accused by prosecutors of engaging in “graymail”—a tactic used by the defense in a spy trial, involving the threat to expose government secrets unless charges against the defendant are dropped. In your work with national security whistleblowers—and especially since the September 11th attacks—is this common to suggest that is what defense attorneys are doing when they try to put together cases?

BearCountry June 30th, 2012 at 3:35 pm
In response to pj98rider @ 108

I don’t think so. I’ve seen a lot of familiar names on other threads.

RevBev June 30th, 2012 at 3:36 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 110

Looks like that is the lesson we all are learning….Very scary.

CTuttle June 30th, 2012 at 3:36 pm
In response to BearCountry @ 106

Probably due to all the power outages…!

DWBartoo June 30th, 2012 at 3:36 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 105

“It” will go on … until we insist that it stop, Sibel.

And then “they will crack down … very hard.

Another “object lesson” …

However, even without a rule of law to appeal to, a “moral” shaming, as did Ghandi, we shall have to find a deeper courage and tenacity.

Your words and example are critical to the discovery of both.

DW

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 3:37 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 110

Do you feel like you gained strength or knowledge from all those years of pursuing those channels?

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 3:38 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 110

Would you have wanted to be able to go to an organization that claimed to offer a service like WikiLeaks? And what can you say about what the rise of this organization means for national security whistleblowing (in addition to the reality that people have been intimidated into silence by government since it published the high-profile disclosures allegedly from Manning)?

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 3:39 pm
In response to BearCountry @ 100

Rehabilitated:-) Seriously. He used to like Reagan. He believed the MSM. He trusted the government (generally speaking). He was one of those who considered whistleblowers ‘disgruntled.’

Some of those changed ( a little) after I entered his life, but most of it changed after my WB case. He is a better person now-And I like him better this way;-)

AitchD June 30th, 2012 at 3:39 pm
In response to Dearie @ 112

Ask me, and I’ll say plead with Jane to give Sibel a paying gig here.

bluewombat June 30th, 2012 at 3:41 pm

Well, dagnabbit, I’m gonna try again.

Who was Lt. Col. Shaffer and what might he have talked about if called to testify at the 9/11 hearings?

CTuttle June 30th, 2012 at 3:44 pm
In response to AitchD @ 121

I’d like to see Boiling Frogs under FDL’s umbrella, like Attackerman and Emptywheel used to be…! ;-)

BevW June 30th, 2012 at 3:45 pm
In response to bluewombat @ 122

Anthony Shaffer – wiki

TarheelDem June 30th, 2012 at 3:45 pm
In response to bluewombat @ 122

Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer

The formal Wikipedia answer.

bluewombat June 30th, 2012 at 3:47 pm
In response to BevW @ 124

Ah, thank you, and thanks to Tarheel Dem as well.

jo6pac June 30th, 2012 at 3:47 pm

Thanks Sibel for stopping by I bought the book the day it was released and just read while on a short vacation.

It’s as bad as we all thought and I’m glad you have made it to the other side. I hope only the best thoughts happen for you and your family.

Yes there should be a link to BF from here

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 3:48 pm

That is a common practice-sometimes out of necessity. I can argue both sides of it: on one hand you have government with this incredible advantage, most importantly the unchallenged advantage of declaring anything they want classified/secret. Sometimes Def. attorneys challenge that by turning it around, because the government can’t have it both ways. Unfortunately, with federal judges mainly on the gov side, at least intimidated by the notion of government-claimed secrecy/state secrets, they still let the gov slide unchallenged. Let me give you an example: Judge Walton, in his brief ruling, stated: ‘This is draconian, but I have to side with the government, because who am I to challenge the government when it comes to national security and state secrets?’

What I’m trying to say, you have both sides of his: A gov as the ultimate unchallenged power to declare anything secret/classified (and known to abuse it big time; remember Reynolds vs. Air Force on SSP). On the other hand you have def. attorneys thinking: ‘fine, they want to play all that secret/SSP case, well, let them deal with the other side of it.’

bluewombat June 30th, 2012 at 3:49 pm
In response to jo6pac @ 127

there should a link to BF from here

Second the motion.

CTuttle June 30th, 2012 at 3:49 pm
In response to bluewombat @ 122

I’d add the Able Danger wiki too…! ;-)

TarheelDem June 30th, 2012 at 3:51 pm

United States v. Reynolds (Reynold v. Air Force)

The formal Wikipedia version.

BevW June 30th, 2012 at 3:52 pm

As we come to the end of this great Book Salon discussion,

Sibel, Thank you for stopping by the Lake and spending the afternoon with us discussing your new book and your experiences.

Kevin, Thank you very much for Hosting this great Book Salon.

Everyone, if you would like more information:

Sibel’s website and book and BoilingFrogs

Kevin’s website

Thanks all, Have a great weekend and Holiday.

Tomorrow: Ted Rall – The Book of O(bama): From Hope, the Disgust, to Revolt Under Obama; Hosted by “WaterTiger”

If you would like to contact the FDL Book Salon: FiredoglakeBookSalon@gmail.com

CTuttle June 30th, 2012 at 3:53 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 128

…on one hand you have government with this incredible advantage, most importantly the unchallenged advantage of declaring anything they want classified/secret.

Commonly referred to as Pixie Dust, here at the Lake, Sibel…! ;-)

CTuttle June 30th, 2012 at 3:55 pm
In response to BevW @ 132

Mahalo Nui Loa to Bev, Kevin, and Sibel…! Another excellent Book Salon…! *g*

DWBartoo June 30th, 2012 at 3:55 pm

Superb Book Salon!!

Thank you, Sibel and Kevin.

Thank you, Bev, as always.

And thank all you Firedogs!

;~DW

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 3:56 pm

Thank you for joining us and keeping up with all the questions coming at you. I will just ask as one final question for the chat—

Anything you think people should know about all the leaks hysteria? Or do you have anything key to communicate to people about what they should keep in mind as the US continues to pursue Assange, those connected to WikiLeaks, Kiriakou and others engaged in whistleblowing and transparency?

I think getting a quick thought from you on either of these questions is a good endpoint for the discussion.

TarheelDem June 30th, 2012 at 3:56 pm

Thank your Sibel, Kevin, and Bev for an interesting discussion.

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 3:57 pm

YES. For years, at least until 2007, I argued with Ellsberg re: Leaking directly-right away. Even 5 years after my case I was that naive. I argued against direct-straight leak. I advocated ‘first pursue all the channels.’ All that changed: after $186K in legal bills, and 3 cases (all shut down), congressional rallies with majority under either parties, IG … I came to se what Ellsberg was saying/advocating.

Now, I get many to-be (or possibly to-be) insiders who come to me and ask: ‘where is the best place to give this to? Who can I trust? What is the best way?’

Unfortunately, I don’t have a confident answer/solution for these people. I don’t.

I do not advocate leaking/disclosing truly and justifiably classified information. On the other hand, I haven’t come across a single insider who was not weary of real clasification, who wanted to leak nefariously. We do need a channel. We don’t have one. If we had a real media/journalism, we wouldn’t be in this position

thatvisionthing June 30th, 2012 at 3:58 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 63

Sibel, re @66 and @105, do you consider jury nullification as a solution, or lack of it as part of what enables the problem? If jurors understood that due process included a run through their 12 consciences before law could be enforced, as opposed to dutifully rubberstamping the government?

See the trial of John Peter Zenger, 1735 New York, from whence America dates its freedom of the press. Zenger could be likened to Julian Assange, because he published (I don’t think he wrote) unflattering truth about the English governor. Unlike Assange, I believe, that was a crime then, yet the jury acquitted him in minutes. His lawyer, Andrew Hamilton (hiring arranged by Pennsylvanian Benjamin Franklin, who thought the case was that important), was able to argue the merits of the law to the jury, and they carried the English common law function of juries nullifying law they judged as bad. That’s what juries were for then, questioning authority before its power could be applied. Now American courts screen out jurors who question court authority, and a man was prosecuted (but acquitted) for passing out FIJA leaflets in front of a New York courthouse — juries can’t KNOW about their power — but jury power in the Constitution has never been amended and I think the Magna Carta still carries weight in Great Britain? That’s something to blow the whistle about, crippled due process. EVERYTHING looks different then, if you know that any 12 people can check and balance the government, and that’s the way it was supposed to work. Things have to make sense, it can’t just be because the government says so. I learned Zenger in high school civics class, now I don’t think they even have civics classes anymore.

Which is the bigger secret? 9/11 and state secrets, or jury nullification? I wonder.

greenwarrior June 30th, 2012 at 3:58 pm

Thank you so much Bev and Kevin.

Sibel you’re one of all time heroines. Thank you for being who you are.

Sibel Edmonds June 30th, 2012 at 4:00 pm

Thank you all: FDL Team and every member of irate minority who were here today. Thank you!

Elliott June 30th, 2012 at 4:02 pm

Thank you coming Sibel, and for speaking up and out.

Thanks too Kevin, and Bev!

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 4:02 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 138

As Jay Rosen, a media critic, said on WikiLeaks, “The watchdog press died; we have this instead.” It’s imperfect. Still puts whistleblowers at risk. It is being targeted tremendously and cannot accept submissions anymore. It is wholly dysfunctional. But for a period of time, it filled a void in a tremendously critical and valuable way.

Thanks again, Sibel, for the discussion this evening.

Kevin Gosztola June 30th, 2012 at 4:06 pm

Shameless plug: I’m on BookTV tonight at 8 pm ET. CSPAN2 is airing the panel event I did with Chase Madar, Mark Doten and Ted Hearne on Pfc. Bradley Manning. It was one of four “Manning Monday” events they held this month.

Thanks everyone for keeping the chat vibrant and engaging.

thatvisionthing June 30th, 2012 at 4:20 pm

Hope you post a link or embed a youtube later — for those of us who don’t get TV.

openhope June 30th, 2012 at 5:51 pm
In response to BearCountry @ 106

I’m here late because it was more important to share a meal with my family. And have the deliciousness of sitting down afterwards to read Sibel and Kevin together on FDL.
I am very happy.
Thank you, Sibel. I’ve followed and been amazed by your story all these years.
Thank you, Kevin. It’s so cool to have you both here.

thatvisionthing June 30th, 2012 at 7:13 pm
In response to AitchD @ 146

I missed it, but here it is archived — from June 4? http://www.c-spanvideo.org/program/Manning

pdaly June 30th, 2012 at 8:09 pm

Thank you Sibel Edmonds for coming to FDL and for your work pushing for honest government. Looking forward to reading your book.
Thanks, Kevin, for hosting.

I’ve enclosed a link to lukery’s blog http://wotisitgood4.blogspot.com/
Lukery (Luke Ryland), based in Australia, had frequent updates to his blog(s) as Sibel was going through the courts. Although some links are broken, others are still active and may be informative for readers new to your story.

thatvisionthing June 30th, 2012 at 8:25 pm

E pleb neesta: It’s not in the fine print, it’s in the BIG PRINT: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ipe5EjcchvY

openhope June 30th, 2012 at 9:22 pm
In response to Sibel Edmonds @ 141

We are here and we are IRATE and the minority who keep the community alive.
I’m a person who regularly checks into your BoilingFrogs site to find out what’s up. I thank you from the depths of my heart for the work you do, Sibel.
I just talked my dad[ who adores your work] into subscribing, now that he understands you need the subscribers because you don’t have Corporate sponsors.
Peace without fear.

marsdragon June 30th, 2012 at 9:55 pm
In response to BearCountry @ 106

Some people are just reading and not commenting, I suspect. MAybe many. Lets be honest. This blog is being monitored right now. Its a brave thing just to participate in this. I think FDL has proven to be a brave voice with its willingness to do this. Very glad to see this forum. Thanks FDL, and all who are contributing…

Watt4Bob July 1st, 2012 at 7:05 am

The following is from my diary of Sept 29 2009;

Why Sibel Edmonds Frightens Us

The story that Sibel Edmonds is telling presents great challenges.

The issues Sibel Edmonds brings to light threaten to distract us from that current legislative battle, but they also threaten to plunge us into despair by extinguishing our collective hopes and leave only the stark realization that our broken and corrupted government has passed well beyond the point where we can reasonably expect that our efforts, no matter how heroic, or how well coordinated, can ever be effective enough to ransom it from the clutches of the ‘false and designing men’ that Samuel Adams warned us about.

Sibel Edmonds story frightens us.

Her story threatens our resolve by confirming our worst fear, the fear that it might be too late.

In the back of our minds we’ve all made the calculation that if what Sibel Edmonds is telling us is true, our country is in a lot more trouble than we’ve been willing to face, and the amount of work we will have to do to fix it is almost unimaginable.

The legislative battle I made reference to was Health Care Reform.

Today Sibel Edmonds added a small twist to that perspective that only deepens the fear;

As a child I was moved from one country to another, and to another, to escape tyranny/police state practices. I never thought I’d be going through that again. You know, government/media I can take on and continue to fight, but public apathy, the apathy of the majority, I cannot. I am not a big fan of Ms. Clinton, but one line I must repeat: it takes an entire village. The executive, the congress, courts, and the media … sure, but most importantly, it is the people-the majority that becomes so accustumed and desensitized ….

And;

Of the four branches (yes, I consider media to be the fourth, media plays the most important role. In fact, it makes retaliation, lack of acountability, possible. It allows congress to dodge responsibility (as it has done for the last 11 years). It allows the court to remain ‘dependent.’ It brings about public apathy. And without public outrage, without congress having to look over their shoulder, the governments become tyrannies-unaccountable-police state.

In the three years since I posted that diary, the suspicion that it may be too late has only deepened, as the evidence mounts that it may indeed be too late.

Phoenix Woman made a comment the other day (@71) that very much disturbed what’s left of my peace of mind;

If there is a successful armed revolt in the US, it will result in an authoritarian régime taking over the country and making the US even more racist, ignorant and stupid than it already is.

I realized she was right, and thinking it over for the last few days has done nothing to temper the impact of that observation.

Sibel Edmonds says she’s thinking of living somewhere else.

It’s terribly sad, but that sounds like a very sensible idea.

yellowsnapdragon July 1st, 2012 at 6:46 pm

Can’t believe I missed this Book Salon! Thanks FDL for having Sibel Edmonds. Wow.

elisemattu July 2nd, 2012 at 2:00 am

Just wanted to express my deep admiration and my gratitude and a bit corny this will sound, but my love. Thank you for being true to the ideals that so many of us were raised with.

I am trying to teach myself that what I think I have lost by being disappointed in the “heroes” I have voted for, who after election almost immediately turned into people more concerned with the lessons involving their political survival rather than in practicing democracy in any and every way possible, all that I have lost I have regained by watching those brave souls like you. Thank you so very much for being a bright light.

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