Defense IG: Obama administration “bureaucrats” trying to silence me about corruption in Afghanistan
posted at 1:21 pm on May 9, 2013 by Ed Morrissey
In yesterdays hearings on Benghazi, Gregory Hicks told the House Oversight Committee that the State Department warned him about cooperating with investigators and retaliated against him for challenging the bogus talking points about a “spontaneous demonstration.” Mark Thompson further testified to being cut out of the loop after he insisted that FEST should be activated, and Eric Nordstrom dismissed the supposedly independent ARB effort as a whitewash aimed at protecting senior officials in the State Department.
Those aren’t the only complaints coming from career professionals within the Obama administration. Politico reports that the Inspector General for the reconstruction of Afghanistan is now claiming that “bureaucrats” are trying to silence him to keep the reports of corruption in the Karzai government from doing any more damage (h/t Rovin):
The watchdog who tracks the billions of taxpayer dollars spent to rebuild Afghanistan says government officials have tried to silence him because they think he’s embarrassing the White House and Afghan President Hamid Karzai by pointing out the waste and fraud.
John Sopko, the special inspector general for Afghanistan reconstruction, used a speech at the New America Foundation on Wednesday to blast government “bureaucrats”’ who have told him to stop publicizing damning audits that detail case after case of waste, corruption and mismanagement of rebuilding efforts in Afghanistan. Some government officials have even complained that they aren’t allowed to pre-screen or edit his reports, he said. …
“Over the last 10 months, I have been criticized by some bureaucrats for not pre-clearing my press releases with them, for not letting them edit the titles of my audits, for talking too much to Congress, for talking too much to the press … and, basically, for not being a ‘team player’ and undermining ‘our country’s mission in Afghanistan,’” he said.
“Many in our government, even some surprisingly senior officials you think would know better, seem to believe that an inspector general should be their partner — or, more correctly, their silent partner,” he said. “In their opinion, my reports should be slipped in a sealed envelope in the dead of night under the door — never to see the light of day — because those reports could embarrass the administration, embarrass President Karzai, embarrass Afghanistan.”
You know, this is something that Congress should investigate. I’m certain that the Obama administration will fully cooperate in such a probe. Oh, wait …
I’d describe this White House as positively Nixonian, but that would be unfair. To Nixon.