Lie, Cheat, Steal, Cry? US Military Intelligence Overwhelmed by Toxic Workplace Complaints: Report

CC0 / / Defense Intelligence Agency headquarters expansion
Defense Intelligence Agency headquarters expansion - Sputnik International, 1920, 20.02.2022
The Defense Intelligence Agency, or DIA, is tasked with collecting military information both public and classified sources around the world, with its data accounting for about one quarter of the overall intelligence the president receives in his daily briefs.
The DIA’s European operations are fraught with toxic workplace environments, bullying, harassment and colleagues spending time snooping on each other instead of concentrating on adversaries, according to witness statements and complaints provided to House and Senate intelligence committees and reviewed by the Wall Street Journal.
“The toxic culture within DIA is a threat to national security,” said retired Air Force Lt. Col Ryan Sweazey, an agency employee involved in collecting evidence. Sweazey blew the whistle on conditions inside the DIA after being reprimanded for attempting to report his concerns up the chain of command during his posting as an assistant defense attaché at the US Embassy in Rome.
Sweazey resorted to personally collecting and submitting complaints to Congress after being stonewalled by the DIA’s Inspector General, whose office is supposed to deal with workplace complaints. The IG has been accused repeatedly of impeding probes and "watering down" reports detailing problems inside the agency.
Among the information gathered by the whistleblower is a complaint that a DIA officer in Rome gathered and secretly passed negative information about co-workers’ job performance, creating a ‘hostile atmosphere’ and disrupting intelligence-gathering efforts. The practice is feared to be widespread across DIA offices in Western Europe.

“As a defense attaché at a US Embassy in a foreign country, I should not have to spend a large portion of my time looking over my shoulder for someone nefarious from DIA. There are plenty of other foreign threats for me to worry about,” one officer said in his testimony.

Another DIA employee indicated that a private medical condition was discovered by superiors and used against him. The same officer said his enthusiasm for the job and writing ‘too many’ intelligence reports was shunned, and that he was removed from assignment early and punished by superiors for taking the initiative.

A US Army lieut. col studying at the Joint Military Attache School in Washington, DC said his criticism of the curriculum led faculty to falsely accuse his wife of running a political blog in a bid to bar him from overseas service.

Two other incidents cited by Sweazey pointed to harassment by an instructor who poked a woman pilot in the chest, and an end of study video featuring pictures of scantily clad students set to the Right Said Fred song "I’m Too Sexy."
A September 2020 Defense Attaché Service survey cited by WSJ found that nearly half of 79 respondents experienced hostile behaviour in the workplace, ranging from intimidation and harassment to bullying and discrimination, including prejudice on racial, gender and other grounds.
In a statement, the DIA emphasized that the agency has “zero tolerance” regarding violations of its high standards. “The Defense Intelligence Agency is a professional foreign-intelligence organization with a highly trained workforce, including dedicated men and women of the armed forces…We would respond as appropriate to any credible allegations of misconduct, abuse, or activities that conflict with our core values,” the intelligence service assured.
The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) logo is displayed in the lobby of CIA Headquarters in Langley, Virginia - Sputnik International, 1920, 11.02.2022
Senators Uncover Secret CIA Programme Collecting Americans’ Data Without Any Oversight
Headquartered at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling in Washington, the DIA has about 16,500 employees, about three-quarters of them civilians. The agency has its share of scandals under its belt, including allegations of coming up with new means to torture detainees using mind-altering substances, sleep deprivation, sexual humiliation and beatings, forcing straight detainees to watch gay porn, draping Muslim detainees with the Israeli flag, and, in some cases, impersonating FBI agents. During the "War on Terror" in the mid-2000s, the agency was granted expanded powers to surveil US citizens. In 2011, the DIA was enveloped in a scandal in Germany after failing to report the murder of a policewoman by a Neo-Nazi terrorist group while surveilling an Islamist group.
Aerial view of a building used by CIA to house prisoners in Vilnius, Lithuania, January 20, 2022, Picture taken on January 20, 2022. - Sputnik International, 1920, 25.01.2022
Lithuania Prepares to Sell Former CIA ‘Extraordinary Rendition’ Site Where Abu Zubaydah Was Tortured
To participate in the discussion
log in or register
Заголовок открываемого материала