Commentary on the Ukraine Controversy by Dr. Don Soeken

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The Baltimore Sun has published a commentary by Dr. Donald Soeken, founder and president of the Whistleblower Support Fund, who observes “the Ukraine controversy serves as a painful – but also very hopeful – reminder that ‘speaking the truth to power’ is often a crucial step in defending our liberties and protecting the rule of law.”

While working as a U.S. Public Health Service social worker in Washington, D.C., in the late 1970s, Soeken blew the whistle on forced fitness-for-duty psychiatric examinations of federal workers. Those targeted by the exams, he found, included whistleblowers.

Intelligence agency whistleblower’s anonymity and safety threatened

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Donald Trump Laconia Rally, Laconia, NH 4 by Michael Vadon July 16 2015

For weeks, President Trump and supporters have demanded unmasking of the anonymous intelligence agency whistleblower whose disclosure triggered the ongoing impeachment investigation. Now, there are concerns for the whistleblower’s safety after conservative sources and the president’s eldest son claim to have outed him.

Whistleblower complaint targets Trump, stirs national debate

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On August 12, an anonymous individual field a whistleblower complaint with Michael Atkinson, the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community. In a letter, addressed to House and Senate intelligence committee chairs, the whistleblower described a situation of “urgent” importance.

In the course of my official duties, I have received information from multiple U.S. Government officials that the President of the United States is using the power of his office to solicit interference from a foreign country in the 2020 U.S. election. This interference includes, among other things, pressuring a foreign country to investigate one of the President’s main domestic political rivals. The President’s personal lawyer, Mr. Rudolph Giuliani, is a central figure in this effort. Attorney General Barr appears to be involved as well.

Australian police raid home, offices of journalists over leaked info

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Australian Federal Police raided the headquarters of Australian broadcast ABC News Wednesday, seeking files related to a 2017 expose of abuses by Australian forces in Afghanistan, including alleged killings of defenseless children. The search warrant named three ABC journalists and whistleblower David William McBride, “a former military lawyer and captain in Britain’s elite Special Air Service.”

Chelsea Manning released from jail, subpoenaed again

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Chelsea Manning was freed on Thursday after two months in an Alexandria, Virginia jail for refusing to testify to a grand jury. That grand jury’s term expired but prosecutors immediately convened a new grand jury and sent a new subpoena to Manning requiring her to appear in court again this Thursday, May 16. It is expected that she will again refuse to respond to questions about WikiLeaks or Julian Assange. In that case, she could be returned to jail until the new grand jury completes its term.

Julian Assange has been forcibly removed from Ecuador’s embassy

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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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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.