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Watchdog Group Calls for Oversight Hearings for the FBI’s Counterterrorism Program

Washington, D.C. December 5, 2006.  The National Whistleblowers Center, a nationally recognized government watchdog group, is calling for Congressional oversight hearings into the FBI’s handling of its counterterrorism program.  Last night FBI whistleblower Bassem Youssef was the subject of a story on NBC Nightly news, in which he discussed, for the first time, his allegations that the FBI’s lack of subject matter experts has harmed and in some cases crippled the U.S. counterterrorism program.

In calling for Congressional hearings into the Youssef case, the National Whistleblowers Center issued the following statement:

Mr. Bassem Youssef is currently a Unit Chief employed in the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division.  Although the FBI gave Mr. Youssef written consent to be interviewed by NBC-TV, the FBI refused to grant him permission to provide case-specific examples as to how the FBI’s lack of expertise has harmed America’s counterterrorism efforts.  The National Whistleblowers Center firmly believes that without full and complete public disclosure of prior problems within the counterterrorism program, grave deficiencies which threaten national security will never be corrected. The only forum available to Mr. Youssef to fully and accurately describe how America has been harmed by the failure of the FBI to recruit, hire and promote Arabic speaking agents/counterterrorism subject matter experts, is through a Congressional oversight hearing. We hope that the new Congress will make such hearings a high priority.


Tags: Press Releases