Putting the Torture Back in the Torture Whistleblowing Case

Kevin Gosztola has suggested and Josh Gerstein has confirmed that, along with Matthew Cole and Scott Shane, John Kiriakou has subpoenaed the Washington Post’s Julie Tate to give a deposition in his leak case.

The Shane subpoena is unsurprising. After all, it’s pretty clearly DOJ found Kiriakou through Shane’s June 22, 2008 story for which he claims to have 24 sources. Meaning any of the 23 other sources may be possible sources for Deuce Martinez’ identity, one of the charged leaks in the indictment. What’s interesting, however, is that Jesselyn Radack suggested to me on Twitter that Kiriakou might not subpoena Shane.

Matthew Cole is a more interesting subpoena, though also not surprising. After all, this investigation started not by investigating Shane’s story, but investigating the name of torturers submitted in a Gitmo filing. Presumably, then, DOJ first grilled the lawyers and their investigators about how they had learned the identities of the torturers they had included in that filing (note, Covert Officer A was not named there, because he was still covert), and from there they ultimately found Kiriakou.

Which brings us to Tate, who previously hasn’t been mentioned in this case. Gerstein writes,

Tate, a Post researcher who worked on stories about the Guantanamo prisoners and helped develop a Post databased of the inmates, was not mentioned in the indictment. However, Kiriakou’s lawyers said in a court filing “information developed by Mr. Kiriakou’s defense indicates that Researcher 1 [Tate] participated with Journalist A  [Cole] in certain activities alleged in the Indictment.”

Cole wasn’t actually alleged to have done anything in the indictment (though the complaint gets closer to suggesting he was investigating the torturers for the Gitmo defendants). But the suggestion is he was in a chain of information that ultimately led back to a bunch of lawyers unjustly accused of improperly treating classified information in a bid to defend their clients. Radack suggested Tate had a similar role.

What do @matthewacole & @JulieATate have in common?

I’m guessing this suggests Tate was somewhere in that same chain of information.

Consider for a moment how this complaint and indictment were structured by the now-retired Patrick Fitzgerald: Covert Officer A was not named in the original Gitmo filing, because he was covert. And Deuce Martinez may have been named, but he did not do the torturing; he did the questioning.

So Fitzgerald structured this case so as to avoid mentioning–much less admitting–that at its root lies a bunch of men guilty of torture. At its root lies the effort to hide the identity of torturers, and CIA’s efforts to punish those who brought that to light. If I’m right, and Tate is in that chain of people who exposed the identity of some torturers, then that’s part of what Kiriakou’s after: to show that he was simply involved in an effort to expose torturers. A whistleblower.

But there’s one other element. Radack also notes the irony here: the government is in a pickle, because they’ve been working very hard in the Jeffrey Sterling case to establish a precedent saying journalists can be subpoenaed in the same District as the Kiriakou case, EDVA, CIA’s home District. So they can’t very well turn around and say these journalists can’t be subpoenaed here. All the more so given that Kiriakou doesn’t have the luxury of just dropping the case to avoid subpoenaing the journalists, as the government does in Sterling.

I’m not sure it’ll work, but the Tate and Cole subpoenas sure seem like an effort to put the real lawbreakers–the torturers–back in the forefront of this case.

Tweet about this on Twitter0Share on Reddit0Share on Facebook0Google+0Email to someone

6 Responses to Putting the Torture Back in the Torture Whistleblowing Case

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
Emptywheel Twitterverse
JimWhiteGNV Say it ain't so, Joe! @RaysJoeMaddon But thanks for the good times.
1mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @chrisgeidner @AnthonyMKreis I dunno, I'm having a hard time seeing the midterms as an impediment at this point.
7mreplyretweetfavorite
JimWhiteGNV @TBTimes_Rays Promote Martinez?
17mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz Wow, Audi is ditching Le Mans and endurance racing to return to Formula One http://t.co/e3PNFAHEax
18mreplyretweetfavorite
JimWhiteGNV Noooo! RT @TBTimes_Rays: Joe Maddon is leaving #Rays
18mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @AnthonyMKreis @chrisgeidner No, but it IS time he gets on with this.
23mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @chrisgeidner Maybe Sutton is going to do one of those 5 am Saturday releases.
26mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @barrettmarson @FoxNews @genesimmons In fairness, Simmons probably knows as much or more than Donald Trump and Peter King
27mreplyretweetfavorite
JimWhiteGNV RT @HassanRouhani: Heartbroken to hear about the inhuman #AcidAttacks. My heart goes out to the victims & the brave people of #Isfahan. htt…
40mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @GregLBean Greg, have you been having any issues getting into Emptywheel blog? We have noticed activity, not sure it is you. Thanks.
41mreplyretweetfavorite
JimWhiteGNV Today would be a very good day to leak the entire Senate Torture Report. Not just the summary, the whole damn thing...
42mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @benjaminwittes @csoghoian @lawfareblog Hey, if Emptywheel can do it, you can too.
52mreplyretweetfavorite
October 2012
S M T W T F S
« Sep   Nov »
 123456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
28293031