Justice for Dr. David Tenenbaum
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Dr. David Tenenbaum is an army civilian engineer who was framed as an Israeli spy by anti-Semitic elements in both the Department of Defense and Congress. His family was mercilessly harassed and followed by the FBI for nearly two years. His community was terrorized by an FBI presence, and visits in the middle of the night by the police. When he was proven, beyond a shadow of a doubt, to not only be innocent—but also TARGETED for being a Jew, he sued the Federal Government.
Rather than admitting wrongdoing, the government hid behind the concept of “State Secret," allowing the government to hide behind a veil of secrecy, As one high-ranking Department of Defense official stated, “This was not States Secrets. This was to avoid state embarrassment.”
The program Dr. Tenenbaum created, which aimed to save soldiers’ lives from IEDs in the Middle East wars was dismantled, a national disgrace that, in the words of Tenenbaum’s attorneys, left the government with our soldiers’ “blood on their hands.”
Next, at the insistence of then-Senator Carl Levin, a champion of the underdog, an Inspector General investigation was ordered. After millions of dollars and years of investigation, it found:
“We believe that [Dr.] Tenenbaum was subjected to unusual and unwelcome scrutiny because of his faith and ethnic background, a practice that would undoubtedly fit a definition of discrimination.”
Even with this finding of bigotry, the Department of Defense not only refused to provide any sort of remedy or apology to Dr. Tenenbaum they also promoted or awarded those employees who targeted Dr. Tenenbaum.
Now two Senators—Senator McCaskill from Missouri and Senator Gary Peters from Michigan—have taken up the mantle in support of Dr. Tenenbaum. They sent a letter to the Secretary of Defense Mattis and demanded that he provide justice to Tenenbaum. They said in part:
“DOD’s lack of a remedy in accordance with the Inspector General’s findings sends a message that DOD is not concerned with even the most egregious cases of discrimination and employee retaliation,” the Senators concluded. “This inaction may also discourage employees from reporting other concerns, which has serious implications for waste, fraud, and abuse.”
Individuals will only come forward to report abuse if they think there will be meaningful action in response. Dr. Tenenbaum’s case, unfortunately, may be teaching others the wrong lesson about accountability for wrongdoing.
Dr. Tenenbaum is still being subject to isolation and is a target at work at the Department of Defense, and this pall threatens the integrity of all whistleblowers and those subject to discrimination by the very government they serve.
You can read more about the case here:
We demand justice for Dr. David Tenenbaum now.
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