WASHINGTON (CN) – The Army refuses to release information on its investigation into whether a three-star general conducted psychological operations on members of Congress during their visits to Afghanistan, according to the two Army information operations officers at the center of the controversy.
Michael Holmes, the officer who says he refused orders to conduct Psy-Ops on American officials, and Laurel Levine filed a federal FOIA complaint, saying the Army and the U.S. Army Central Command refused to release the records.
Holmes and Levine says the Army investigation “also covered allegations of whistleblower retaliation conducted against the plaintiffs for challenging unlawful orders.”
“Rolling Stone” magazine published an article in February this year “alleging that the U.S. Army illegally ordered a team of soldiers specializing in ‘psychological operations’ to ‘manipulate visiting American senators into providing more troops and funding for the war … and when an officer tried to stop the operation, he was railroaded by military investigators,'” according to the complaint.
The article garnered widespread attention and led Gen. David Petraeus to order an investigation “into whether Lt. General William Caldwell, a three-star general in charge of training Afghan troops, had conducted psychological operations on members of Congress,” according to the FOIA complaint.
“The investigative report was completed and sent to General Petraeus in April 2011,” the complaint states.
“Rolling Stone” reported that Holmes resisted the order to run Psy-Ops on members of Congress, and the Army retaliated against him with an investigation that falsely accused him of having an affair with Levine, his subordinate.
The Army also accused him of “using Facebook too much,” according to the magazine.
Holmes has put in 24 years on active duty and in the Army Reserve, including tours in Iraq and the Balkans as well as Afghanistan. He worked as a National Guard information operations officer in Afghanistan from November 2009 to January this year.
Levine has 15 years on active duty and in the reserves, including tours in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.
They want to see the records.
They are represented by Mark Zaid.