• After a Year of Serious Roars and Growls, State Dept Officially Retires FSO-Non Grata

    October 13, 2012

    Tags: , ,
    Posted in: Embassy/State, Iraq

    The most important foreign service blog out there, Diplopundit, has a nice write up, sort of an obituary really, of this past year, my struggle with the State Department.

    Diplopundit focuses on the big picture. Forget about what you think of me or my book or my efforts and think about the institution, the venerable Department of State. Diplopundit posits that over the past year dozens or more staffers have been involved in my prosecution, memos written, maybe even awards and kudos handed out to workers who participated. And the sum of all that time, money and effort was?

    Pretty much squat.

    Despite the full resources of the Department of State, I did and still do continue to speak out. I retired maybe a bit earlier than I was originally planning, but I did retire free and normal. More importantly, what I wrote stands. The descriptions of waste and mismanagement in Iraq reconstruction I wrote have entered the zeitgeist and will pretty much always be there as a counterpoint to State’s own rapidly discredited happy talk version of events (By the way, how’s Iraq working out? That World’s Largest Embassy in Baghdad still seem like a good idea?)

    What does it say about an institution like State that not only did it expend all these resources against one employee, but that its expenditure accomplished nothing? What does it say about State when it reacts this violently against a critic, a whistleblower, one of its own long-serving employees who only told the story of his own experiences?

    Despite the thousands of pages of crap turned out by State in its witch hunt and the hundreds or more personhours expended, not once did they claim anything I wrote was false. Not one fact was ever challenged. Not one figure or example was ever offered in rebuttal. The only things that oozed out were sad personal attacks against me.

    Now, what does that say about your Department of State? Madame Secretary, a response in defense of your organization? Don’t worry if you’re too busy to respond now, we’ll be asking the same questions in 2016.

    Related Articles:

    Copyright © 2020. All rights reserved. The views expressed here are solely those of the author(s) in their private capacity.

  • Recent Comments

    • Rich Bauer said...


      HC in 2016 – she’s already filling out her cabinet:


      10/13/12 1:42 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...


      Hillary running for POTUS in 2016? That is highly unlikely in my opinion but this is not a site to go into that subject. The exchange would most likely become unproductively contentious.

      10/13/12 5:51 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...


      Everybody out of the Poole.

      10/13/12 6:21 PM | Comment Link

    • Meloveconsullongtime said...


      Hillary in 2018: “I did not have sex with that woman.”

      10/13/12 6:37 PM | Comment Link

    • Rich Bauer said...


      Careful PVB, or Poole will have you fired from your own blog.

      10/13/12 8:23 PM | Comment Link

    • pitchfork said...


      Ya know, it’s taken me 60+ years to figure out why bureaucrats, with a little or lot of power, act as if they are 6 years old, and are the bully of the playground. In the case of Whistleblowers, it never ceases to amaze me how…instead of being treated as hero’s..the Government, especially now under Obama, acts as if these “hero’s”, have done something personal against the people who try and prosecute them. I mean… narcissism notwithstanding…. how do these people look in a mirror? In Obama’s case.. this lying sack of shit has broken so many campaign promises it’s astounding. I’d submit… either he is certifiable psychopath, or the most evil cockroach to ever become the POTUS. Nonetheless, now that I know what kind of sub-human excrement he is, I can truly say I’ve lived to see the total usurpation of our Constitution and the Federal Government devolve into a totalitarian Cartel.
      I only wish my Dad could have seen what has become of the United States of America as of now. As a crew member on the Naval PBY that discovered the Jap’s heading for Midway… when he found out Oblivian had declared the right to kill American citizens, my dad, even though bedridden from Cancer, was so outraged. on his deathbed made me promise.. to ship his uniform, medals and a handwritten letter to Ofuckface …..and I did. I hope Obombardiar chokes on them.

      I never told him about the NDAA. It would have broke his heart. I mean…someone tell me now..exactly what did all those soldiers die for? hmmmmmmm?

      10/13/12 8:35 PM | Comment Link

    • JVC said...


      To PVB:
      Well, not so easy to “forget about you”. Do not underestimate the impact your book has made. It is an invaluable contribution to the field of conscientious debate about the role, power and scope of federal responsibility both here and OCONUS.
      Hillary Clinton is a farce and I think that will become clearer as the fruits of our adventures in the middle east and elsewhere increasingly come home to roost in the coming years.
      Thanks for your continuing efforts.


      10/13/12 9:31 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...


      Bauer- your comment’s humor was not lost on me. Cabinet/chest – yes indeed. Hey, I’m just trying to keep the comment section simple not a place for long winded rants. I notice some think they can use PVB’s blog as a podium for their opinions.

      10/14/12 1:42 AM | Comment Link

    • Kyzl Orda said...


      I wonder if it is a generational problem – these problems have seemed to worsen since the Second World War. It was no picnic when the neo cons had the reins the last administration

      10/14/12 2:14 AM | Comment Link

    • Lafcadio said...


      PVB broke the code of State Department “omerta.” In the process, he exposed State as the consumate empty suit. All style and no substance. Diplopundit’s article shows what a laughable enterpise State’s bureaucracy has become.

      Sadly, nothing will change. Too many vested interests.

      10/14/12 12:25 PM | Comment Link

    • Expat said...


      Who the hell is John Poole to tell the readers of this venerable blog what they can and cannot “go into”? There’s still freedom of expression in the homeland, isn’t there?!?

      10/14/12 2:42 PM | Comment Link

    • JVC said...


      It’s a public forum. Like they teach you at FLETC… You get what you get.

      10/14/12 4:08 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...


      Expat: I’ve seen too many forums turn ugly and improperly used for rants and personal attacks of others they disagree with. That would dishonor PVB’s intent which I sense is to engage thoughtful and intelligent exchange.

      10/15/12 1:58 AM | Comment Link

    • wemeantwell said...


      You all be nice to one another or there will be no Hillary sex tape releases for you!

      10/15/12 1:03 PM | Comment Link

    • Kevin Weishar said...


      At least we don’t have to see your lame posts on the soundingboard anymore.

      10/15/12 4:32 AM | Comment Link

    • wemeantwell said...


      For non-State Department readers, the “Sounding Board” is an internal State Department suggestion box/online forum, from which I was at one time banned in the interests of free speech and transparency.

      Nice to see that State Department drooge Kevin a) came over to this forum to say he was glad I was not on the other forum and b) that he did it using his official state.gov email address. Let’s hope he had preclearance for the posting. And, of course, hey, thanks for writing!

      10/15/12 1:02 PM | Comment Link

    • John Poole said...


      Now I have an even bigger reason to remain respectful when commenting on your blog. I hope I have cataracts before you ever release such material.

      10/15/12 1:11 PM | Comment Link

    • Lafcadio said...



      I hate to point out the obvious, but except for a few posts that are inadvertently comical (e.g., putting a Starbucks in the State cafeteria), virtually all posts on the sounding board are lame. It’s a place for the management to kill dangerous ideas and identify troublemakers.

      And since PVB was was already identified as such, no use having him on there.

      When Hillary departs, somebody will mercifully end the sounding board’s sufferings. And ours too!

      Although it is kinda cool seeing how naive some people are, thinking it is an actual forum with a free exchange of ideas.

      10/17/12 12:15 AM | Comment Link

    • John Brown: Public Diplomacy and the Flight to the Academy | Political Ration said...


      […] by an independent and very imperfect agency (the above-mentioned USIA), is hidden away at the regulations-driven State Department, some would say like a coffin at a funeral home, despite the good intentions […]

      11/5/12 5:47 PM | Comment Link

    • Oh hello there — we’re in today’s In the Loop show, no photos please! | Diplopundit said...


      […] After a Year of Serious Roars and Growls, State Dept Officially Retires FSO-Non Grata (wemeantwell.com) […]

      12/5/12 5:05 PM | Comment Link

    Leave A Comment

    Mail (will not be published) (required)