Fired Jewish CIA Employee Appeals To Clinton, Lieberman
The Jewish Press - September 8, 2000
WASHINGTON - (JPFS) - The lawyer for a
former Central Intelligence Agency staff attorney who
says he was fired by the spy agency because he is an
observant Jew is calling on President Clinton and Vice
President Gore to intervene on behalf of his client.
Lawyers for Adam Ciralsky filed a civil action
suit in a US district court in Washington last month
against Central Intelligence Director George Tenet,
CIA General Counsel Robert Mc Namara Jr., and
other CIA and FBI officials for what they describe as
"outrageous, constitutionally repugnant security
investigations and disciplinary processes," conducted
against their client.
But the plea by Ciralsky's lawyer - together
with an appeal the lawyer made to Senator Joseph
Lieberman, as reported in the Boston Phoenix news-
paper last week - may elevate the case from a purely
legal matter to a political one. Gore, with his pick of
Lieberman as his running mate, has made challenging
anti-Jewish bias into something of a campaign
selling point. Yet the court documents filed on behalf
of Ciralsky assert that during Gore's watch, the CIA
discriminated against a Jewish employee.
"Mr. Ciralsky was unjustly singled out for
investigation and subsequently interrogated, harassed,
surveilled and terminated from employment with the
CIA solely because he is a Jew and he practices the
Jewish religion," the complaint filed to the court
Documents released by the CIA in July 1998 include
one that describes Ciralsky as a "rich Jewish"
employee with a "wealthy daddy." Another describes
Ciralsky and other Jewish-Americans as "pro-Israel
baggage." Other records detail Ciralsky and his
family's monetary support for the United Jewish
Appeal, a practice that the documents claimed paint
Ciralsky and his family as extreme supporters of
Israel's hard liners in the Likud party."
A CIA spokeswoman declined to comment on the
case, while denying all charges of discrimination.
"We certainly have a policy in that we do not
discriminate on the basis of religion or sexual
orientation or gender or ethnic background," said
the spokeswoman, Anya Guilsher.
Tenet has ordered CIA intelligence managers to
undergo sensitivity training offered by the Anti-
Defamation League. But Ciralsky's lead lawyer calls the
"Mr. Clinton and his people, and that includes
Mr. Gore, ought to see what's going on and make it
right," said David H. Shapiro, one of Ciralsky's Washington-
The CIA has said that it terminated Ciralsky's
employment because he did not fully disclose his
relationship with two people with dual US-Israeli
citizenship who work for Israeli defense firms and have
possible ties to Israeli intelligence. It also said that
Ciralsky failed two polygraph examinations, a charge
People close to the case also say the CIA feared
that Ciralsky, like other observant Jews in the agency,
was a high risk for following the route of Jonathan
Pollard, the US Navy analyst recruited by Israeli
intelligence agents in the mid-1980s.
Ciralsky, who was hired by the CIA in December
1996, served with distinction as an attorney advisor
in the Office of General Counsel. In October 1997 the agency suspended him and
withheld a scheduled promotion before firing him in
Justice4JP Note: Mr. Lieberman has made no statement on the Ciralsky Case in the 3 years since it became public knowledge. Neither Mr. Clinton nor Mr. Lieberman has to date, responded to Ciralsky's appeal.
The Ciralsky page