Q&A – FBI Accountability

Today’s question was submitted on back of the recent revelations from last year’s testimony from Lisa Page and Peter Stzok that indeed the fix was in on the Clinton investigation from Loretta Lynch at Justice and Robert Muller at the onset of the Trump-Russia investigation.

A peeve of mine is that it appears to be a prerequisite for those reporting on corruption at Justice, must compliment the work of rank & file agents prior to condemning the actions of superiors.

I get the whole broad stroke thing and not taken out of context thing but there are and continue to be not just fundamental breakdowns but actual corruption nationwide at all levels of the FBI without a peep nor any accountability of the suits or boots because of the silence of all those outstanding rank and file agents.

Is it Dedication to the agency, loyalty to superiors or fear of retaliation that prevents these subordinates from coming forward?

Bottom Line: I agree with your sentiment and your frustration. The answer to your question is complicated. There are a couple of FBI agents I’ve worked with on stories discussing these issues with who aren’t any happier about what’s happened at the Bureau. All but one told me before the original Comey Show when James Comey took the marching orders from Loretta Lynch, as we now know, that Hillary Clinton was going down. To say that morale suffered with many of the “rank and file”afterward is probably an understatement. 

I get the sense that most agents are great people trying to do the right thing just like most police officers. As a result, there are many who feel the need to provide cover to them when they are critical to the agency. On this point, I’m a bit more cynical. I think the systemic failures we’ve seen time and again are part of a bigger issue. It stands to reason that an agency led by failed and potentially corrupt leadership would have problems throughout its ranks. In Florida in particular, we’ve seen time and again, the consequences of “rank and file” failure and seemingly without any notable accountability. 

The terror attacks at Pulse nightclub and Stoneman Douglas don’t happen without extensive “rank and file” failure. All of those people would be alive today if the FBI had effectively done their job. There’s no excuse and yet where’s accountability? So, I disagree with only focusing on the failures at the top. The FBI has had systemic failures and/or corruption recently at every known level of the organization. I do think the FBI has (or hopefully had) problems and to only call out those in leadership previously provides cover to issues just as big further down organizationally. 

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Email: brianmudd@iheartmedia.com

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Photo by Tim Boyles-Getty Image

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