Another scandal with security information and Lady Gaga

Misiewicz aboard shipYou may remember that Bradley Manning, the swishy, troubled intelligence analyst now doing a long sentence in Leavenworth,  copied classified files for distribution while lip-synching to Lady Gaga. We don’t know what it is with the autotune star and blowing off one’s oath of office, but it looks like fandom is not working out well for another serviceman, this one in the Navy.

A high profile U.S. Navy commander has been charged with accepting paid travel, the services of prostitutes and Lady Gaga concert tickets from a Singapore-based defense contractor in exchange for classified information according to federal prosecutors.

Commander Michael Vannak Khem Misiewicz, who was born in Cambodia during the Vietnam War and gained media attention for his rise to captain of a U.S. Navy destroyer, has been arrested on federal bribery charges – in what some are calling the worst scandal to hit the Navy in decades.

Also taken into custody and charged in criminal complaints unsealed in U.S. district court in San Diego were Leonard Glenn Francis, the CEO of Glenn Defense Marine Asia Ltd, and John Bertrand Beliveau II, a special agent with the Naval Criminal Investigative Service.

via Navy hit with bribery scandal as high profile commander charged with accepting Lady Gaga tickets and prostitutes in exchange for classified information | Mail Online.

Whatever happens to Misiewicz, he’s unlikely to end up like Manning, who is now acting out his Lady Gaga fantasies underneath some axe murderer in Leavenworth. BEcause if there’s one principle that’s the foundation of military justice system, it’s “different spanks for different ranks.” But Misiewicz’s career is over. Even if it’s all some collossal mistake, he has Brought Bad Publicity, which is the nearest thing to an unforgivable sin the Naval Service offers.

The investigation could be much larger. Glenn Defense Marine Asia is the company accused of bribing Misiewicz; its CEO Francis, and manager for government contracts Alex Wisidigama, are in custody after being lured to a bogus San Diego meeting that turned out to be a pretext for their arrest. Glenn Defense seems to have charged much higher than market rates for its services to the US Navy for 25 years, suggesting that other officers — perhaps including Misiewicz’s predecessors as deputy ops officer of the Pacific-spanning 7th Fleet — have also been doing the “pro quo,” which has to have NCIS looking for the “quid.”

Speaking of NCIS, despite the incredibly phony TV show, it doesn’t exactly have a reputation for investigative excellence, a situation that will not be helped by the presence of one of its own in the dock.

The Washington Post explained how that came to happen:

Court documents allege that Francis was receiving regular tip-offs from inside the agency about the state of investigations. The information, prosecutors say, was being supplied by John B. Beliveau II, a onetime NCIS agent of the year, who was arrested at Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling in Southeast Washington on the same day that Misiewicz was taken into custody.

[H]e fed Francis confidential information about pending criminal investigations into Glenn Defense Marine….

In return… Francis supplied Beliveau with prostitutes and free travel, including a three-week trip to five Asian countries.

The Post also identified at least one other officer who may be involved in the long-running scheme:

Court papers make references to other, unnamed Navy officers who accepted favors from Francis, an indication that the investigation remains in its early stages.

Navy officials have identified Capt. Daniel Dusek, former commander of the USS Bonhomme Richard, as another target of the investigation. He has not been charged, but the Navy relieved him of command Oct. 2, citing the investigation.

Dusek, who remains under suspension, declined to comment through a Navy spokesman.

No word on what Dusek’s connexion to Lady Gaga is. If there isn’t one, he’s probably not guilty.

FMI: Daily Mail story.


10 thoughts on “Another scandal with security information and Lady Gaga

  1. Aesop

    Repeated, from hard-won personal experience:

    “30. Be aware that NCIS only has Mark Harmon and a crew of dedicated professional crimefighters on TV. In real life, they generally exist to make the BATFE and TSA look competent by comparison. They may occasionally get their man and solve a crime, but generally only after they’ve exhausted all other options.”

    1. Aesop

      Only on their own time and nickel.
      Military dining facilities don’t have special officers’ menus.
      “Let them eat cake” doesn’t play well among the enlisted men.

      1. Hognose Post author

        And, to be fair, the officer culture in many branches is quite egalitarian. Certainly in SF and Infantry. Artillery, though, struck me as almost feudal. Officers had a lot of contempt for their enlisted. Of course the average EM gun bunny was as dumb as a cobblestone and many times more likely to get into trouble downtown…. It’s hard to accept the SP4 Mafia as full contributors to the mission when you have to keep explaining to them that it’s bad to beat their wives, drink and drive, and assume that they can keep writing checks until they get to the back of the checkbook where the unused deposit slips live.

        1. Aesop

          I wouldn’t presume to speak to the Big Green side of that, never having seen it, but the case in the Misguided Children section was that HQMC, by design, put all the leftovers into FA. In my first battery, we had, for example, washouts from avionics, military police, ordnance maintenance, air traffic control, band, and half a dozen other various MOS fields. Contrary to lore, they do not send the screw-ups to the grunts. They are too smart to take them there. In equal number, they put in selectees too smart (by GT score) for infantry as well, from among those who enlisted unassigned. You can imagine what such a stew results in when you have dedicated intelligent types cast in with the dregs of military service.
          We also found out what happens when you screw up and get bounced from Field Arty. (No, still not the grunts.) We had a SNCO who’d been career-lax about those suggestions that ear pro around large howitzers was a spiffy idea. When he became so actually stone-deaf that he could no longer hear the firing commands over the field intercom, and became a safety issue, he was transferred out of the artillery regiment. We wondered to where.
          And then come Monday morning, we met him. As the new mess sergeant at the regimental dining facility, and shiny new SNCO Field Mess Supervisor, with OJT training commencing immediately starting at 0400 each morning.
          Our officers, as a rule, sharing exactly the same service as the troops, were the model of egalitarian warriors, at least up to the company level. 0-4 and up, it was luck whether they were going to act like men, or demi-gods.

      2. Y.

        Yeah, I imagine.

        It used to be the case before WWII in many militaries – and probably did not improve morale one iota.

        Not sure who pioneered it.

    2. Hognose Post author

      No. Everybody from private to general, including enemy POWs, is supposed to get the same stuff. It is also a tradition that commanders and NCO leaders eat last of their units.

      In practice, many officers and NCOs (and quite a few privates) live with their families and only eat with the unit in the field or on deployment.

      Also, the US military OCONUS is a dry service — no drinking without an exception at, IIRC, 2-star level. Which doesn’t mean 2-stars can drink; it means you have to get written permission from a 2-star to have beers when your, say, Bolivian officer candidates graduate. (If your officer candidates are Afghans, the question doesn’t come up).

      1. GBS

        Few eat better than the senior NCOs (E7-9) on a CVN. I’ve only been on a single ship where I thought the wardroom food was at least on par with what was served up on the mess decks.

  2. GBS

    My God this guy is an embarrassment. Don’t be too sure about his fate. I once worked for an O-6 on his way to his second ship command who instead ended up in Leavenworth. His crime was fraudulently drawing a housing allowance while living in military housing. He aggravated it by trying to run when discovered. Commander Gaga not only committed a fraud against the government in concert with a contractor, he used his position to send that contractor classified info about ship movements. He’s in trouble.

    1. Hognose Post author

      Every unit and element has a few. In SF we had (not counting all the asshats who said they were SF but never got closer to a Green Beret than groping Girl Scouts) some real no-prizes, like Keith Idema (who went to prison, deservedly, at least twice), Brian Sirois (doing a deserved life for murder), and Don Zlotnik (who hasn’t done anything criminal that I know of, but is an incredible embarrassment to the Regiment every time he opens his piehole).

      In the “now it can be told” category, in a classified CT intel class back when most terrorists weren’t Arabs, and the Arab ones were socialists big into hostage swaps, we were told that two American home-grown terrorist groups, one of black racists and one of white ones, had SF Vietnam vets in their training cadre. “We” (SF) had been asked by the FBI to explain what their training was and document the TTPs (not an acronym in use then) that they would use. I do not know what the Bureau did with the report — caught and jailed the assholes, one hopes.

      In retrospect I wonder if Randy Weaver was their “white terrorist.” AFAIK he was never a member of a violent group (he was a racist to the extent of being a racial separatist, but turned down groups seeking a violent approach that tried to recruit him) and was not a VN vet, but he was SF.

      The BOP thinks they have scores and hundreds of SEALs and SF but they’re almost all wannabees. I can’t imagine they have many naval officers “inside” but there have to be a couple. Just human nature and the science of the normal distribution.

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