Whitewash in Colombia, U.S. Military Taking the Fall

Whitewash in Colombia, U.S. Military Taking the Fall

In April, news broke that Secret Service members had brought prostitutes to their hotel rooms in Colombia. They were outed by one of the prostitutes when an agent refused to pay all the money the prostitute expected in return for services. As details of the story emerged, President Obama and various Senators promised that the Secret Service would be held accountable, from agents on the ground to those higher in the chain of command. 

Enter an AP report currently circulating, and it appears the misconduct of Secret Service members has been glossed over in favor of a story about how U.S. military personnel brought prostitutes to their rooms in Colombia as well. In fact, one has to read through more half the report before being reminded that Secret Service misconduct started the investigation to begin with.

The report says twelve military personnel had prostitutes in their rooms and that some of those military members brought their dogs in with them and allowed the dogs to “soil bed linens.” Later in the report, the AP says it’s actually not clear if all the episodes involving dogs were limited to U.S. military personnel, but this clarification is made so late in the report that the damage is already done.

Although eight of the twelve Secret Service personnel involved in the scandal were ousted from the agency, and one of them was stripped of his security clearance, because of the security risks associated with the conduct, the AP report largely focuses on military personnel who, in investigations thus far, have not been found guilty of security risks. 

It’s almost as if the report is part of a concerted effort intended to whitewash official misconduct involving the Secret Service on the one hand, while allowing the U.S. military to take the fall on the other.   



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