CIA whistleblower's astounding letter about his prison life


46 Responses to “CIA whistleblower's astounding letter about his prison life”

  1. thaum says:

    Fascinating and terrifying, you mean.

  2. peregrinus says:

    Wow.  He’s got his shit together.  Reckon I’ll drop him a line.

    • Nash Rambler says:

      I was thinking the same thing.  Maybe a post card from someplace nice.

    • California Powers says:

       Given the circumstances and general let’s call it “climate” of justice in the USA today, I will refrain from sending him a letter lest I myself end up on some crazy-paranoid gubmint watchlist.

      • Gabriel Morgan says:

         I mean this kindly and earnestly: if you are at a point in life where you worry the government might punish you for sending someone a letter, you are already in prison, and you don’t have anything to fear from sending one.

        • Antinous / Moderator says:

          Let’s see how you feel about that after ten seconds of being waterboarded.

          • Gabriel Morgan says:

             Am I being concern-trolled by a BB moderator?  Does anyone think that people are going to be waterboarded for sending this guy a ‘right on!’ letter, and if they do, doesn’t that make my point for me?  Jesus.

          • Antinous / Moderator says:

            I know people who have been murdered in prison.  People who were in prison for political crimes.

          • malindrome says:

            ^Um, relevance?  What does that have to do with @gabriel_morgan:disqus ‘s point about chilling effects?

          • Antinous / Moderator says:

            The idea that being in an ideological prison is anything like being in an actual prison for political ‘crimes’ could only come from someone who has never experienced the latter.

          • stillcantfightthedite says:

            Why don’t they cut out the middle man and just monitor our comments on BoingBoing?  Waterboarding for some, miniature American flags for others!

      • Scubloke says:

        Seems to me that you have just given yourself a pretty powerful reason to put pen to paper. Your freedom is going to die the death of a thousand small cuts.

  3. i’ve had to deal with -jail- cops once, for about six hours, and it sucked for the same reasons.

    i threw up in my garage when i got home.

    i can’t see how i would survive something like prison with these useless-except-as-prison-guards-fucks.

  4. Øyvind says:

    He seems to have some impressive social skills. I have to admit I don’t know his background; was he an interrogator as well?

  5. openfly says:

    There are bad people in this world.  Some of them are prison guards.  Some of them TSA agents.  Some of them are judges.  And they will never be punished for living a life of corruption and betrayal.  And when they die, they will die a worthless unpunished nothing, leaving behind a wake of destruction and terror.  No better than a suicide bomber.  No worse than a junkie who shot a man for a pair of shoes.

    But there are people like Kirakiou who will gladly shoulder the punishment of their lessers.  Good people who fight every single day to do the right thing in spite of the cost.  In them there is always hope for us.  In them, our humanity is brightest.

    You can choose to hate those who are terrible.  Rail worthlessly against the worthless.  Or stand up every day and accept the punishment of being a good person.

    I’d stand with Kiriakou.  I’d rather be punished as a good man, then live a happy life as a worthless criminal. 

    And that’s it folks.  America was, and is Kiriakou.  And I  love America.  And I accept the consequences of that.  Miserable as they often are.

  6. Manny says:

    It sounds like he’s having a relatively easy ride there. He’s lucky for that much, at least.

    • StnCld_316 says:

      Bubba and Raoule likely make sure he drops that bar of soap in the shower at least one a day.  LOL

  7. otp says:

    I think I’ll send him a poster of Rita Hayworth.

  8. awjt says:

    THAT was awesome.  Made my morning.  Thank you BB for sharing!

  9. infiniteGoop says:

    I bet they gather enough signatures to warrant a response from President Obama who will say how he would like to pardon him, but [insert whatever excuse he uses this time here].

    It’s heartbreaking how the world works, sometimes.

    • Boundegar says:

      I’ve heard the Bush administration packed the DOJ with partisan Republicans, and the Obama administration hasn’t made many changes. That might explain their zeal to pers – er – PROsecute whistleblowers. Obama inherited one hell of a mess.

      • aikimoe says:

        There is not one single whistle blower that Obama HAS to prosecute.  Every federal prosecutor serves at the pleasure of the President.

        President Obama is 100% responsible for every prosecution HIS Justice Department undertakes.

        Shall we also blame the Republicans for the fact that, with the exception of Washington, Obama has pardoned fewer prisoners than any other President?

        • Boundegar says:

          I wasn’t excusing this, just trying to explain it.

          • aikimoe says:

            Okay, sorry for the pardons poke, then.

            But I don’t think it really explains anything because even if Obama did “inherit a mess,” it’s one of the simplest messes to clean, federally speaking.

            I’m tempted to speculate on an explanation as to why Obama is prosecuting more whistle blowers than all other presidents combined, but then I have to remind myself that it doesn’t matter why he’s doing it.  He’s doing it (though he could stop it very, very easily), and that’s all that matters.

        • Antinous / Moderator says:

          You could pick apart any one or two of President Obama’s policies and blame them on Congress, but when you look at these prosecutions AND the escalation of the war in Afghanistan AND Guantanamo AND… the pattern is consistent.

      • GlyphGryph says:

        I think he’s rather quite grown to like the mess at this point.

      • The lead prosecutor in the Kirikou case:
        “Neil H. MacBride was nominated by President Obama as the 59th United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia…”

  10. bardfinn says:

    One relevant takeaway: the corrections officers told him that an Arab prisoner had been ordered to kill him. Turned out that the corrections officers had told the Arab prisoner that Kiriakou had been ordered to kill *him*, in an attempt to instigate one of them to attack the other and thereby justify maximum security and/or solitary for both of them and further instigate race war.

  11. IanM_66 says:

    “who was sent to prison for blowing the whistle about the federal government’s secret torture campaign.”
    Wow, the heedless inaccuracy of this characterization is breathtaking. He was sent to prison for carelessly and unnecessarily revealing the identities of colleagues in the CIA, endangering their lives. And he did not blow the whistle on anything, merely condemned the torture in interviews long after the fact. Which is commendable, I suppose, but hardly heroic. In any case, every part of that sentence is completely false.

    • RedShirt77 says:

       The internet seems to believe the two acts are closely linked.

    • RedShirt77 says:

       Uhm, In fact the name that came public was that of Deuce martinez, who was part of a CIA torture team that then left to join a consulting group that helped design the enhanced interrogation program….   so…

    • aikimoe says:

      Whether or not he revealed the names “carelessly” or “unnecessarily” is unrelated to his imprisonment for the crimes he plead guilty to.  (Personally I think it’s very necessary to reveal the names of any and all government employees involved in torture.)

      He claims to have done what he did to make the public aware of illegal and/or immoral activities the government wanted kept secret.  If this is true (and I don’t know if it is), then, yes, doing so under the threat of being imprisoned would make him a hero.

      Also, while there are, no doubt, many selfless and quite valuable agents in the CIA, there are certainly many who need to have their lives endangered enough that they quit, as the government itself is unlikely to fire or punish them, regardless of their behavior.

      If there is evidence that Kiriakou’s actions put the lives of innocent CIA agents in danger, I would certainly like to see it.  As it stands, I believe we have only the government’s claim that this is so.

      • llazy8 says:

        (Personally I think it’s very necessary to reveal the names of any and all government employees involved in torture.)

    • Antinous / Moderator says:

      revealing the identities of colleagues in the CIA, endangering their lives.


    • I agree completely. A similar act of irresponsibility was the Nuremberg Trials, which put the lives of numerous SS operatives, who had just followed order, in danger by recklessly revealing their names. Dozens had to give up their lucrative jobs in terrorism-detection and flee to Argentina.

  12. nox says:

    Now that this is on the internet, are they going to start losing his mail? If anyone can start writing in cipher. . .

  13. RedShirt77 says:

     So much is disturbing about this letter.

    1. This man is in jail for having a conscience

    2. This prison is full of drug offenders that have no business being there

    3. The guards are tin plated dictators who are stupid enough to think they can outsmart a CIA agent

    4.  The guards put together a rouse that could have gotten one of two prisoners killed and fear no repercussion

    5.  We call that a justice system under a democratic president.

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