Prior to the Comey Gang’s defiling of our reputation, the public believed that FBI special agents were indeed special. McCabe, Srzok, Page, and others stained that public persona, but they’re gone, and the rehab had begun…until June 4, 2020.

FBI agents had always maintained an aura of professionalism and fairness with the public. We’d usually begin interviews by flashing our credentials and stating, “Special Agent Smith, Federal Bureau of Investigation.”  Sometimes the response would be, “I never met an FBI agent.” The Bureau’s image equated to public trust based on our image as impartial and minus any agenda.     

At the conclusion of our interview the interviewee didn’t know our ideology, political affiliation, or if we had a dog or cat.  

There’s been some confusion regarding the June 4 photo of the FBI personnel kneeling before police protestors. One report identified them as support staff from the FBI’s DC field office, but the photo clearly shows that the individuals were armed special agents.

FBI Kneeling

The genuflectors job description doesn’t matter because they were representing the entire FBI family. Some FBI supervisor put those agents on the street with violent protesters. They were clearly identified by their protective vests, radios, guns, and FBI patch.

What was their operational plan if confronted with a mob who despised law enforcement officers?  

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Our SWAT teams and Hostage Rescue Team train for crowd control with the proper equipment, but these agents had neither. FBI policy states simply that deadly force can be used if there is an immediate threat to yourself or others. A violent crowd confronted by armed law enforcement officers would certainly qualify as the precursor to an immediate threat.     

The relevant question becomes why the agents knelt, and there’s only two possibilities..

They either sympathized with the protesters or were confronted with a large group of thugs who demanded that they “take a knee.” We don’t know the agents’ personal belief system but what we do know is that every agent knelt in supplicant to the vigilantes.

Some may argue that the agents acted appropriately and knelt to avoid a violent confrontation. I wouldn’t fault a group of citizens taking a knee to avoid a beating, but these were sworn law enforcement officers who took an oath to protect the public.

If the protesters somehow threatened the agents which pressured them into kneeling, they should not be employed in law enforcement. Cops and agents are routinely insulted and threatened while doing their job.

They violated the FBI’s motto of Fidelity, Bravery, and Integrity. The image of FBI agents surrendering to a violent mob is an American tragedy. It can never be erased and is an insult to every FBI agent who came before this latest generation. We took an oath to defend our nation and not to submit to armed anarchist bent on destroying our country.

If the agents knelt in philosophical unity with the mob, they jeopardized due process. The FBI is currently investigating the police officers involved in the George Floyd shooting on civil rights violations. The image of agents kneeling in solidarity with violent police protesters damaged the FBI’s neutrality as an institution.

That one image tainted every current and future civil rights case. A defense attorney representing police officers accused of civil rights violations could raise the photo and simply state: “Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, it’s obvious that the FBI can’t be impartial. This photo demonstrates their bias against police officers.” Talk about reasonable doubt.

What happened to the FBI in the last 20 years? What factors led to the Comey Gang and the genuflectors? A lack of leadership is the simple answer. A leader would not permit 10 to 15 agents plan a coup against a sitting president. Other factors include recruitment and mentoring.

Edgar Hoover had his faults, but his strong suit was recruitment. A great number of veterans were recruited following WWII, Korea, and Vietnam. Military vets are not clock watchers, understand the chain of command and are mission oriented.

Bill Gertz, national security columnist at the Washington Times discussed the FBI’s movement from conservative to liberal values. It occurred during Mueller’s Directorship and continues today. Gertz blamed that a string of FBI failures resulted in politically correct policies that emphasized multiculturalism over competence and results.

One example involves Gamal Abdel Hafiz, a Muslim FBI Agent in the Dallas Office. According to Assistant United States Attorney Mark Flessner Hafiz refused to record a Muslim suspect in a terrorism case. When pressed Hafiz stated that his decision was based on religious beliefs that “A Muslim doesn’t record another Muslim.”

FBI special agent Robin Wright signed an affidavit affirming that this was the exact quote and former special agent John Vincent concurred. Hafiz was never disciplined.

The Bureau has moved left. Former FBI Agent and Navy SEAL Jonathan Gilliam feels that today’s Bureau’s top brass climb the career ladder by ideology and not merit. Gilliam recalled that two FBI agents advised him to “think like a liberal” when taking the FBI entrance exam. “Two FBI agents that did not know each other,” counseled Gilliam, “Do not go in and take that test as though you are thinking like a SEAL. And that’s what I did, and I passed.”

Another contributing factor is the inability of senior agents to mentor new agents. Much like senior NCO’s in the military senior agents were able to reprimand baby agents. This counselling included expletives not deleted and an occasional shove.

In today’s FBI, any agent who raises their voice to another agent or support personnel will be suspended. The victim of this thin skinned political correctness is a generation of agents who missed valuable guidance.    

I can’t recall a single contentious conversation concerning politics or race during my time as an agent. We probably discussed those topics, but they didn’t rise to name calling or shouting.

My partner for several years was Fred Snellings who was a former Marine, Georgia State Trooper and African American. We spent an average of ten hours a day together in the office or field and our families socialized on weekends.

We discussed everything that two friends could, and to this day, I can’t tell you if Fred was a Democrat, Republican, liberal or conservative. I never viewed my fellow brick agents as black, brown, yellow, or white. They were simply my FBI brothers and sisters and we would all bleed blue if wounded.

The genuflectors are symptomatic of the same flawed managers currently leading the FBI. And the sad fact is that it will not change anytime soon.



About the author:   John Ligato is a retired FBI agent who worked on the Joint Terrorism Task Force. He spent 8 years in deep cover and was later a pilot on the FBI’s special operations group.

As a Marine in Vietnam, John was the recipient of three Purple Hearts. As an adjunct professor for Campbell University, John taught international security and counter terrorism at MCB Camp LeJeune North Carolina. He is the author of five books, the latest is, THE COMEY GANG.

John Ligato was also a featured guest on the Conservative Business Journal Podcast.  Listen to his tremendous interview about the corrupt Comey gang setup of General Michael Flynn…

Get John Ligato’s book, “The Comey Gang: An Insider’s Look at an FBI in Crisis” here on Amazon…