War on Whistleblowers (2013)

In the face of potentially life-threatening dangers, they dare to speak truth to power. They're the whistleblowers; the crusaders for truth who often stand as the lone link between corrupted corporate and governmental interests and the public's right to know. The stirring film War on Whistleblowers, directed by acclaimed documentarian Robert Greenwald, outlines the challenges and sacrifices faced by these tireless activists, and calls attention to their increasing importance in a society where the powerful are more omniscient and unregulated than ever before.
Thanks to the efforts of Edward Snowden, the role of the whistleblower has gained a level of prominence in our culture unlike anything we've witnessed since the Watergate era. The formation of sweeping national security structures in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks began a new wave of permissiveness in how intelligence was collected. As illustrated in the top-secret materials released by Snowden, this intelligence gathering included unprecedented invasions of privacy and instances of highly questionable electronic surveillance practices.
The film highlights four cases where whistleblowers noticed government wrong-doing and took to the media to expose the fraud and abuse. It exposes the surprisingly worsening and threatening reality for whistleblowers and the press. The film includes interviews with whistleblowers Michael DeKort, Thomas Drake, Franz Gayl and Thomas Tamm and award-winning journalists like David Carr, Lucy Dalglish, Glenn Greenwald, Seymour Hersh, Michael Isikoff, Bill Keller, Eric Lipton, Jane Mayer, Dana Priest, Tom Vanden Brook and Sharon Weinberger. With President Obama's commitment to transparency and the passage of the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act, there was hope that whistleblowers would finally have more protection and encouragement to speak up.
But times have never been worse for national security whistleblowers. New rights are all about employment and do nothing to protect against threats of prosecution and incarceration. In fact, the Obama administration has attacked more whistleblowers under the Espionage Act than all previous administrations combined. There are 56 federal laws about whistleblower job rights, but none about protection from imprisonment.
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