To: Ban Ki-moon, United Nations Secretary General, Salil Shetty, Secretary General, Amnesty International, Steven W. Hawkins, Executive Director, Amnesty International USA, Kenneth Roth, Executive Director, Human Rights Watch, Anthony Romero...
.@secgen, @amnesty, @hrw, @aclu: Boycott & Sanction CIA Head John Brennan
John Brennan, head of the Central Intelligence Agency, should be subject to boycott and sanctions for the CIA's failure to comply with U.S. and international law. John Brennan should not receive any award, honor, or recognition until the CIA takes concrete, minimal steps to transparently comply with U.S. and international law, including:
- supporting declassification of the Senate Intelligence Committee's report on the CIA's use of torture and the CIA's internal “Panetta review” on the CIA's use of torture;
- supporting the public report of information on how many civilians have been killed by U.S. drone strikes, as demanded by the Senate Intelligence Committee, supporting the public report of all Administration legal justifications for the use of drone strikes, cooperating fully with all UN investigations of the U.S.'s use of drone strikes, and ending all unlawful drone strikes conducted by the CIA;
- ending all CIA military operations in Syria, including the arming of Syrian rebels.
Until the CIA takes these minimal steps to comply with U.S. and international law, John Brennan should not be invited to participate in any civil society event, unless 1) the purpose of the event is to address the CIA’s lack of compliance with U.S. or international law, or 2) the event includes a meaningful opportunity to challenge John Brennan on the CIA’s lack of compliance with U.S. or international law.
Why is this important?
The Obama Administration is establishing a new precedent by implementing sanctions against Russian officials for violations of international law in the wake of Russia’s occupation and annexation of Crimea. Civil society organizations in the United States and around the world should invoke this precedent in calling U.S. officials to account for the U.S.'s own violations of international law.
John Brennan, head of the Central Intelligence Agency, is playing a central role in shielding the agency from accountability to international law on three key issues: the CIA's use of torture during the Bush Administration; the CIA’s use of drone strikes; and the CIA’s arming of Syria rebels, which the Obama Administration has acknowledged is a violation of Syria’s sovereignty under international law, just as Russia’s actions in Crimea violate Ukraine’s sovereignty under international law.