Adam Ciralsky and The CIA Witch Hunt
Does the CIA stereotype Jews as security risks?
Loft's allegations of ingrained anti-Semitic bias in some of the upper echelons of US government are being echoed today by a CIA lawyer who has come under national attention for being the first American to file suit against the CIA.
A few months ago, Adam Ciralsky who had worked for the CIA's office of General Counsel since 1996, was suspended from duty under suspicion of unauthorized contact with Israel. Ciralsky filed an unprecedented suit, challenging the validity of the spy agency's lie detector test, which he claims stereotypes Jews as security risks.
Ciralsky, who is Jewish, was placed on paid leave last October after the agency's polygraphers refused to clear him for an assignment at the White House. Only months before, Ciralsky passed two previous polygraph tests, that had questioned him about his contacts with Israelis.
Ciralsky suggests that as a Jew he has been victimized by a
government-wide "witch-hunt" for Israeli spies launched last March. The hunt resulted in the suspension of more than 10 Jewish federal foreign policy and defense specialists from their jobs, in the wake of rumors that an Israeli secret agent was operating in Washington.
Ciralsky charges the CIA with carrying out a purge of its Jewish employees by using an extraordinarily anti-Semitic security profile which won't allow security clearance for employees who speak Hebrew well, give money to Zionist organizations, attend an orthodox synagogue or visit Israel frequently, on the grounds that they pose a security risk. The implication is that a Jew who feels solidarity with his people
is somehow suspect, lacking in patriotic sentiment.
On previous polygraph tests, the CIA questioned Ciralsky about his tourist trips to Israel, his attendance at Israeli Embassy cultural events in Washington, his wealthy parents' donations to Jewish groups, and his close friendship with a former Judaica teacher.
Ciralsky is demanding that the CIA publicly renounce the profile which is humiliating and anti-Semitic, release him for his White House assignment and undertake a thorough reevaluation of its polygraph program, which began in 1952.
Meanwhile, Ciralsky has not been officially accused of anything, nor has he been exonerated, sources say. For eight months he has been in limbo, collecting his CIA check at his home in Maryland.
The White House is trying to discreetly untangle the controversy. No one wants the spectacle of having the Justice Department defend in court the CIA's use of a polygraph, whose screening questions clearly carry the implication of Jewish 'dual loyalty" or lack of patriotism, typical anti-Semitic charges.