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theodore M I R A L D I mpa ... editor, publisher, writer. katherine molé mfa ... art director
Monday, September 23, 2013
Lawmaker 'confident' CIA gagging employee
Stands by story after agency calls his Benghazi charge 'false'
WASHINGTON — It’s not everyday the CIA effectively calls a member of Congress a liar, especially a veteran who is so well-respected on both sides of the aisle.
But Rep. Frank Wolf, R-Va., isn’t backing down and is too seasoned to be intimidated.
He is standing by his comment that a CIA employee has been suspended for refusing to sign a nondisclosure agreement, or NDA, preventing him from discussing the Sept. 11, 2012, attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya, that resulted in the deaths of four Americans, including Ambassador Chris Stevens.
Wolf is too diplomatic to get into an argument with the CIA in the media.
But he told WND he is “confident” what he says is true.
Wolf also told WND how the whole issue arose.
He said his office received a tip about an “employee of the CIA who is being disciplined because he wouldn’t sign a nondisclosure agreement.”
The congressman’s office contacted the law firm representing the employee, and the firm confirmed “there is a person there who is their client” and “they gave us a name, I think, by accident.”
The law firm declined his assistance, as Wolf said they told him, “We will work this thing through the normal legal process, and we don’t need any congressional help.”
He explained, “I don’t know what their plans were. We offered to help. My office works on a lot of whistleblower cases, and they said, ‘No, they were going to go through the normal procedure,’ and I’m not sure what normal procedure they’re talking about.”
But, Wolf said, “We have given people the names of who’s involved.”
WND asked the congressman if he has been in contact with the numerous people forced to sign NDAs.
“We’ve been in touch with people who are in touch with people,” he said. “There are different nondisclosure agreements. There are NDAs signed by the CIA, and NDAs signed by people on the ground who were not employees of the CIA,” such as independent contractors.
Asked why the CIA would call Wolf’s claim false, he replied, “I’m not going to get into an exchange back and forth. Maybe John Brennan knows, I don’t know.”
CIA Director John Brennan denied a CNN report that the agency has forced employees to sign NDAs and take polygraph tests.
CNN called it “an unprecedented attempt to keep the spy agency’s Benghazi secrets from ever leaking out.”
In the past Wolf had declined to speculate why the administration is trying to keep people quiet, but WND asked the congressman if he’d heard anyone discuss possible reasons for the pressure.
“Well, would it be fair to say they don’t want people to know what happened?” he asked rhetorically.
“I think everyone who was on the scene at the time of the attack ought to be brought before Congress, subpoenaed, because that protects them, and given the opportunity to testify under oath in public.”
His bill to establish a select committee currently has 171 cosponsors, which is nearly three-fourths of the Republican majority in the House.
The Virginian said it would be very easy to find out who should testify, “because the CIA and others know who was on the ground, their human resources (departments) know, so the committee could find out.”
While he seemed frustrated with what appears to be an administration stonewall on Benghazi, the senior statesman remained optimistic.
“I think eventually the truth will come out, but it will come out slowly,” he said. “And perhaps in six months or a year, somebody will come forward. Eventually these things come out.”