Since Pentagon officials began tracking the numbers in 2007, dozens of brave Americans have been killed and even more have been injured during so-called “Green-on-Blue” (a.k.a., “Insider”) attacks. Committed by Afghans wearing the uniforms of their nation’s military, police and security agencies, the attacks have occurred despite the repeated assurances of Afghan government officials that they are doing everything possible to screen their countrymen before they are allowed to serve as policemen, security guards, and soldiers.
In my soon-to-be-published second nonfiction book, THE CLAPPER MEMO, I not only expose major flaws in the eight-step vetting process being used to vet Afghans before they are allowed to don their uniforms and work alongside Americans assigned to train and mentor them, but I trace the problem back almost ten years to the issuance of the first of three Department of Defense memos. All three memos deemed the polygraph the only credibility assessment technology approved for use by agency employees (i.e., military and intelligence personnel). One was issued by James R. Clapper Jr., now our nation’s top intelligence official.
The result of an exhaustive four-year investigation, THE CLAPPER MEMO will likely raise at least four troubling questions in your mind as you read about the vetting process now in place in Afghanistan:
1) If the polygraph is the only credibility assessment technology approved for use by DoD personnel, then why isn’t the polygraph being used to vet Afghan recruits and determine whether or not they harbor the intent to do harm to Americans serving in their country?
2) If the polygraph is being used to vet Afghan recruits and those recruits continue to turn on their American counterparts, then what does that say about the polygraph’s effectiveness as a credibility assessment tool?
3) If the polygraph cannot be relied upon as a credibility assessment tool for vetting Afghans, then why is the polygraph the only credibility assessment technology approved for use by DoD personnel?
4) If other credibility assessment technologies are available and have proven themselves reliable when used during high-profile interrogations of detainees at Guantanamo Bay, of members of Saddam Hussein’s “Deck of Cards” in Baghdad, and of thousands of other terror and criminal suspects around the world, then why isn’t DoD allowing the non-polygraph technology to be used in Afghanistan today?
In addition to the issues raised by these questions, THE CLAPPER MEMO will likely cause you to wonder whether or not you can trust what top government officials have told you, or will tell you, about other important matters. Released May 2013.