Are you a career State Department employee hesitant to volunteer for service in Iraq or Afghanistan? Well, if your worst fears are realized and you are killed at one of those posts Condi has already arranged foryour death to be ignored.
If terrorists attack the U.S. embassy in Iraq and injure or kill American diplomats serving there, the State Department does not have to investigate the incident as it would if it occurred anywhere else in the world, thanks to a tweak to federal law.
Two years ago, the State Department quietly requested — and received — a legal provision exempting the secretary of state from a requirement she order rigorous after-action investigations into incidents against embassies or personnel in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to the congressman who sponsored the bill. The reason, the lawmaker told ABC News at the time, was that Rice was reluctant to send investigators into harm’s way.
A State Department Bureau of Diplomatic Security spokesman told ABC News in an e-mailed statement that the new law gave Rice “greater flexibility” in how incidents in Iraq or Afghanistan would be investigated, because “the original review procedures…may not be appropriate in such circumstances.” All incidents would still be investigated, he said.
The Accountability Review Boards, once required to be assembled in the wake of any attack against State Department personnel or facilities, have been respected for their rigorous investigations and sober conclusions, several former senior State Department officials told ABC News.
Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J., introduced the bill, which exempted the secretary of state from convening the investigative panels, or Accountability Review Boards, in the aftermath of a bombing, murder or other attack on State Department personnel or facilities in Iraq or Afghanistan until September 2009.
At the time of his bill’s passage, Smith told ABC News the State Department wanted the law changed “for the safety of the members of the Accountability Review Board.” He did not respond to a request for comment.