While most of us will be home soon for the holidays, CIA whistleblower Jeffrey Sterling is remaining where the CIA wants him -- in prison.
As his wife Holly points out, Jeffrey "was convicted of seven counts of espionage on January 26, 2015 -- for merely communicating with New York Times journalist James Risen."
With its vindictive treatment -- going so far as to put him in a prison located nearly 900 miles from the home that the Sterlings have long shared -- the government wants to make an example of Jeffrey Sterling.
You can now set a very different kind of example -- by clicking here to support the Sterling Family Fund.
Jeffrey has been in prison for six months now, and he's scheduled to stay behind bars until mid-2018. As Holly puts it, "My husband was wrongfully sentenced to prison simply because he was in touch with a journalist."
In fact, there were many things wrong with the trial that convicted Jeffrey: Selective prosecution. Nothing but circumstantial evidence. Conflicting testimony from CIA witnesses. A less-than-credible Condoleezza Rice as the government’s star witness. And much more.
One of the government’s tactics is to destroy the personal finances of whistleblowers and their families. Jeffrey couldn’t earn money after being indicted five years ago. Holly is a social worker. Their financial lives have collapsed.
You can help Jeffrey and Holly with a donation that will go directly to meeting their personal expenses -- including the travel costs of Holly’s difficult journeys from St. Louis to Colorado, where she visits her beloved husband in prison.
"Jeffrey utilized proper channels and informed the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence of his concern for the safety of the American people," Holly explains. "As such, Jeffrey is a whistleblower."
Clearly, the CIA and the president want to crush whistleblowers. We can’t accept that. Democracy depends on the informed consent of the governed.
"President Obama publicly committed to a transparent government," Holly Sterling notes, "yet it has been shrouded in mistruth and secrecy. Jeffrey's conviction is only the latest chapter in the administration's war on whistleblowers and sets a dangerous precedent for freedom of information."
If you'd like to provide some much-needed assistance via the Sterling Family Fund -- "to help Jeffrey’s family ease the ongoing financial burdens they face" -- please click here.
Jeffrey was found guilty on charges that he gave classified information to Risen about Operation Merlin, the reckless CIA program that gave flawed blueprints for a nuclear weapon component to Iran in 2000.
As Risen's book State of War reported, Operation Merlin was ill-conceived and dangerous. In the name of countering nuclear proliferation, the CIA risked promoting it.
When Jeffrey Sterling became a whistleblower by going through channels to tell Senate Intelligence Committee staffers about Operation Merlin, he surely knew that doing so would antagonize top CIA officials.
If you believe in such courage, please chip in to help the Sterling Family Fund:
-- The RootsAction.org team
> AFP: "Pardon Sought for Ex-CIA Officer in Leak Case"
> Marcy Wheeler, ExposeFacts: "Sterling Verdict Another Measure of Declining Government Credibility on Secrets"
> Norman Solomon, The Nation: "CIA Officer Jeffrey Sterling Sentenced to Prison: The Latest Blow in the Government's War on Journalism"
> Reporters Without Borders: "Jeffrey Sterling Latest Victim of the U.S.' War on Whistleblowers"
> ExposeFacts: Special Coverage of the Jeffrey Sterling Trial
> BBC News: "Jeffrey Sterling's Trial by Metadata"
> Documentary film: "The Invisible Man: NSA Whistleblower Jeffrey Sterling"