Julian Assange has been forcibly removed from Ecuador’s embassy

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Julian Assange. Photo by Cancillería del Ecuador (CC) https://www.flickr.com/photos/dgcomsoc/14953880621/

Julian Assange. Photo by Cancillería del Ecuador (CC) https://www.flickr.com/photos/dgcomsoc/14953880621/

At 9:15 this morning, London’s Metropolitan Police entered the Ecuador embassy where they arrested, handcuffed and forcibly removed WikiLeaks’ founder Julian Assange at the invitation of Ecuador’s president, Lenin Moreno. Police transported Assange to a London court where District judge Michael Snow called Assange a “narcissist” and ridiculed concerns about getting a fair trial before declaring him guilty of violating bail, and ordering him held for sentencing.

Trump’s Space Force rejects whistleblower protections

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Challenger space shuttle crew remains await transport to Dover AFB. [NASA photo, 1986.]

President Trump’s proposal for a Space Force to assure US military dominance in space has come under fire for its proposed personnel system, an alleged “merit-based” system that would give fired employees no right of appeal or external review.  The Federal News Network quotes AFGE National President J. David Cox, who observed that “an employee or whistleblower adhering to his or her oath of office could be terminated at will.” That would seem to violate the Constitutional oath every elected official and federal employee takes.

Chelsea Manning jailed “in defense of a free press”

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Chelsea Manning, the Army whistleblower, is again in jail less than two years after her release from prison on a grant of clemency from President Obama. US District Court judge Claude Hilton ordered Manning to be taken into custody for after she refused to answer questions before a grand jury thought to be targeting Julian Assange for prosecution. 

Office of Special Counsel’s mission at risk, GAO reports

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An investigation by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) found serious problems at the Office of Special Counsel (OSC), the federal agency responsible for investigating whistleblower disclosures and retaliation complaints.

Requested by members of Congress for the fiscal years (FY) 2011-2016, the investigation found an increase in complaints to OSC and a backlog that increased from 953 to 1,858. The backlog, GAO notes, “puts OSC’s ability to fulfill its mission of protecting federal employees at risk,” “delays attaining desired favorable actions and remedying wrongdoings,” and may discourage whistleblowers from making disclosures.

“Sister Cathy” murder cold case warms up

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Heroic whistleblower-nun “Sister Cathy” died in valiant effort to stop brutal sexual abuse at her high school, witnesses say

by Tom Nugent

BALTIMORE – More than 47 years after a 26-year-old teaching nun was found murdered in a garbage-littered patch of scrubland on the outskirts of Baltimore, there is convincing new evidence that she died in a tragic bid to blow the whistle on rampant sexual abuse involving both priests and police officers at the nun’s Catholic high school.

The still unsolved killing of Sister Catherine Ann Cesnik – for several years a youthful and high-spirited English teacher at Archbishop Keough High School in southwest Baltimore – still looms as one of Maryland’s most puzzling and enigmatic “cold cases,” according to many law enforcement officials and journalists who have studied the murder over the years.