Army Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman, a military officer at the National Security Council, center, arrives on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 29, 2019, to appear before a House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, and Committee on Oversight and Reform joint interview with the transcript to be part of the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
Are you noticing a pattern? Apparently, even as part of an organization as structured as the U.S. military, you can break the chain of command and leak classified information without any repercussions. Just make sure you are all “orange man bad”, all the time.
According to a new report, Army officials are saying that Alexander Vindman isn’t even being investigated.
U.S. military isn’t investigating Vindman, top Army official says https://t.co/QPQWgRWNy9
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) February 15, 2020
As I’ve broken down before (see Alexander Vindman’s Testimony Appears to Confirm He Illegally Leaked to the Whistle-Blower), it’s not just probable, but fairly certain that Vindman was a primary source of information to Eric Ciaramella. This was all but confirmed in his testimony before Adam Schiff’s impeachment committee.
JORDAN: "Who else did you talk to following the July 25th call?"
And then Swalwell, Schiff, and Vindman's criminal defense attorney immediately jump in to make sure he never answers the question.
What are they afraid of? pic.twitter.com/wzeo5oW65p
— Sean Davis (@seanmdav) November 8, 2019
For those who don’t want to click the above, Vindman was asked who he talked to about the July 25th phone call between Trump and Zelensky. Before he could answer, both Eric Swalwell and Adam Schiff jumped in to stop him, claiming it would reveal the whistle-blower. There’s very, very little question at this point that Vindman shared information about the call with Ciaramella. Couple that with the fact that said information was top secret, code word classified, and it’s probable that leak was not only an improper breach of the chain of command, but that it was illegal.
There is no logical reason Vindman shouldn’t face an investigation from the Army. He clearly went outside the chain of command and leaked information to someone who was not privy to that information. He then heavily politicized his position, making wild claims that his views on foreign policy should have been preeminent.
And what does Vindman get in response? Media plaudits, a fat pension, and the Army shrugging their shoulders.
Look, it’d be one thing if they investigated and found a lack of evidence to directly tie Vindman to the leak. While I find the above transcripts and the process of elimination to be fairly dispositive here, I can accept that more information would need to be collected. But for the Army to not even bother to look into this is just another credibility burning decision by our governmental bodies.
This comes on the heels of charges against Andrew McCabe being scuttled, even after he admitted to lying under oath. That happened in the same week prosecutors sought nine years in prison for Roger Stone’s lying under oath. It’s also juxtaposed against the treatment of Michael Flynn, whose intent to “lie” was much more in doubt than McCabe’s.
I wish I could spin this or say it’s going to get better, but it’s not. The bureaucracy is so entrenched and so insidious that I can’t imagine this two-tier justice system ever going away. If you know the right people, have the right politics, and get a government check, you are untouchable.