By Jenna McLaughlin
Image courtesy of Foreign Policy illustration/Getty Images
Dan Meyer and a team of employees from the U.S. intelligence community watchdog’s office were set to travel overseas to a contractor’s office where no government employee had yet visited. They were carrying posters, as well as red, white, and blue foam cubes emblazoned with the phrase “Be part of the solution” and the hotline number where whistleblowers could call in and report instances of waste, fraud, and abuse.
But the trip, planned for earlier this year, was ultimately canceled by his supervisors.
Meyer, whose job is to talk to intelligence community whistleblowers, can no longer talk to whistleblowers. He has been barred from communicating with whistleblowers, the main responsibility of his job as the executive director for intelligence community whistleblowing and source protection. He is currently working on an instructional pamphlet for whistleblowers, and he will have no duties to perform after he’s completed that work.
He can also no longer brief the agencies or the congressional committees on his work as he’s done in the past, send out his whistleblower newsletter, or conduct outreach. And he has no deputy or staff.
Foreign Policy spoke with eight sources with knowledge of the ongoing issues at the Intelligence Community Inspector General office, where Meyer works. The sidelining of Meyer, described to FP by several sources, is just one part of a larger problem with the office.
For attorneys who represent clients with pending cases in front of the inspector general, the office’s disarray is particularly disturbing.
Andrew Bakaj, who worked for several years at the CIA’s inspector general office and helped stand up the whistleblower programs at the Pentagon and in the intelligence community, says the destruction of the office is a matter of grave national security.