Authored by Tom Ozimek via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),
A recently disclosed report by an alliance of retired and active duty FBI agents and analysts claims a concerning decline in FBI recruitment standards due to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) priorities, posing a potential threat to national security.
The report, handed over to the House Judiciary Committee, alleges that these DEI requirements have compromised standards in areas such as physical fitness, drug use, financial and personal integrity, mental health, and work experience.
The alliance, which includes senior former executives and agents from counterintelligence and counterterrorism branches, alleges that the FBI’s recruitment focus has shifted from selecting the “best and brightest” to emphasizing candidates based on race, gender, and sexual orientation.
The report cites instances of new agents failing to meet even relaxed fitness standards, displaying literacy issues requiring remedial English lessons, showing reluctance to work overtime, and even having serious disabilities or mental health concerns.
The authors, who indicated in the report they chose to remain anonymous owing to fear of reprisal, express concern that the current trajectory of FBI special agent recruitment, primarily driven by DEI measures, may significantly impede homeland security efforts.
The report suggests a series of corrective actions, including performing a 90-day audit of FBI recruitment practices, legislation to strengthen the oath of office for FBI special agents, and congressional testimony by FBI Director Christopher Wray to address potential concealment of deficiencies or misinformation by subordinates.
“These findings are alarming, require immediate action, and corrective measures must begin without delay,” the report’s authors wrote.
An FBI spokesperson strongly refuted claims that their standards in selection and hiring have been compromised.
“The FBI continues to maintain the very highest standards in selection and hiring,“ the spokesperson told The Epoch Times in an emailed statement. ”Any notion that standards have been lowered is both inaccurate and an affront to the talented and patriotic men and women who dedicate their lives to serving others.”
“Random and anonymous allegations devoid of any supporting data or other evidence cannot change the facts: the FBI continues to recruit the best and brightest candidates from all walks of life, and year over year only a small percentage of applicants ultimately make it through our difficult process to become a special agent,” the spokesperson continued, adding that “the suggestion that we are lowering standards to increase diversity is both offensive and not true.”
Neither the the House Oversight Committee nor the Judiciary Committee replied to a request for comment. However, a spokesperson for House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan told the New York Post—which broke the story—that the committee has received the report and is reviewing it.
The House Judiciary Committee account on X shared the New York Post’s story, which cites the spokesperson, giving further confirmation that the committee is looking into the matter.
The report’s authors note that the sources and sub-sources on which the findings are based are either currently employed by the FBI or are retired.
All have been given code names such as SIERRA 51, said to be a 20-plus year veteran of the FBI, which a sub-source (identified as ROMEO PAPA 14) has known for 10 years and knows them to be “honest and trustworthy” with a “great, unblemished” reputation at the agency.
Many of the sources and sub-sources had direct access to and firsthand knowledge of the information they provided, according to the report’s authors.
The current and former agents and analysts say that an increasing number of lower-quality candidates, which one source described as “bread crumbs” because they were rejected from other law enforcement agencies, have been submitting applications to become FBI agents.
“And the FBI is selecting these candidates to become FBI Special Agents because they satisfy the FBI’s priority to meet Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) mandates,” they wrote.
These “bread crumbs” candidates are being selected instead of more qualified candidates based on DEI priorities.
Not only that but assessors who are responsible for evaluating candidates for agents are also themselves being selected based on DEI criteria rather than competence.
Even worse, when some FBI Special Agent applicant coordinators at the agency’s field offices tried to intervene to block the applications of unqualified candidates, they were reportedly overruled by headquarters.
In one case described in the report, SIERRA 72 disqualified a black female candidate for being more than 50 pounds overweight and unable to pass the agency’s physical requirement test. The candidate even reportedly told the evaluating agent that she “hates working out and was never active.” But despite the agent’s attempt to disqualify the candidate, headquarters reportedly ordered them to continue with the application process.
The current and former agents and analysts say that the DEI policies affecting the FBI’s hiring practices mean that the “law enforcement and intelligence capabilities of the FBI are degrading.”
The FBI spokesperson pushed back on these claims in a statement to The Epoch Times.
“Our agents continue to meet the highest standards of personal and professional conduct and rigorous physical fitness requirements,” the spokesperson said, while providing some recruitment statistics that suggest hiring practices have, at least in some regards, remained constant.
“The average age of new agents has remained steady at about 31 years old, which means they bring a wealth of experience and well-developed skills to the Bureau,” the spokesperson said.
“The number of agents with prior military and law enforcement experience has remained steady at around 20-30 percent of each new class, while the number of new agents with advanced degrees has swelled to nearly 40 percent of each new agent class,” the spokesperson added.
‘Liberal and Racial Bias’
Despite Mr. Wray’s previous claims of soaring recruitment numbers, the report contends that Special Agent hiring has, in fact, decreased, while retirements have increased.
One of the authors who spoke to the New York Post attributed this decline to a diminished public trust in the FBI following controversies during the Trump era, attracting recruits more interested in being “agents of social change” than in protecting the country.
A source cited in the report (SIERRA 23) notes that not only is today’s FBI “concerned more about diversity over competence,” the agency has also been infected with a liberal and racial bias.
“SIERRA 23 believes that if you are conservative and/or white male or female, the FBI will treat you harshly for the same offense committed by a minority, gay, or transsexual employee,” the report states.
FBI field agents who want to investigate “self-generated cases” often face hurdles in the form of being forced to pursue “politically driven cases such as January 6th and anti-abortion protestors,” per the source.
SIERRA 23 also said that FBI headquarters seems to be driving more investigations than field offices, which are “investigating legitimate crimes and threats impacting its regions.”
Another source, SIERRA 17, said that the reason the FBI is lowering its standards “to attract a larger pool of candidates with more politically ‘left of center’ views” and these candidates are only employable thanks to reduced standards in terms of physical, academic, or professional accomplishment.
The FBI is the latest federal entity to face criticism for DEI priorities in hiring.
Last year, the Department of Defense (DoD) sparked criticism for a program that pushed diversity in the military as a “strategic imperative.”
“Diversity is a strategic imperative critical to mission readiness and accomplishment. We were on site for the 2023 inaugural @DoD_ODEI Summit as DEIA experts led forums to advance the DEIA and DoD mission—because our people matter,” the DoD said in a post on X on Feb. 18, 2023. (ODEI refers to the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, while DEIA refers to diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility.)
The DoD’s promotion of DEI attracted criticism, both online and off.
“Your strategic imperative is defending the United States,” Tesla CEO Elon Musk replied to the DoD post.
Some lawmakers also shared critical takes.
“As Chairman of the Military Personnel Subcommittee, ensuring our military is focused on lethality and readiness, NOT wokeness and DEI, is my top priority,” Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.) said in a post on X replying to the DoD’s message.
Congressional Republicans flagged the Pentagon’s DEI push as a major vulnerability. A GOP report from November 2022 called “Woke Warfighters” blamed the Biden administration for “weakening warfighters through a sustained assault fuelled by woke virtue signaling.”
The report cited a number of DEI measures in the military, including critical race theory (CRT) being taught at military academies or plans to implement DEI into the training curriculum for U.S. Special Forces.
“The only goal of our Special Forces should be effectiveness,” the report states. “Every other consideration must be subordinate to and in service of that end.”
Sat, 01/27/2024 – 21:00