« Far-Right Oklahomans talk about organizing a new state militia | Main | Wizbang Weekend Caption Contest™ »

To the Full Extent of the Law

With security clearances come legal obligations to keep the secrets one has been made privy to. Those who leak such secrets do so in violation of the law and of their oaths, and almost always to the detriment of National Security.

Former NSA executive charged with leaking information to newspaper
By Spencer S. Hsu
The Washington Post

A former senior executive with the National Security Agency has been indicted on 10 felony charges related to the leaking of classified information to a national newspaper in 2006 and 2007, the Justice Department announced Thursday morning.

Thomas A. Drake, 52, headed an office in the NSA's Signals Intelligence Directorate at Fort Meade between 2001 and 2005, and continued to work with the agency as a high-ranking contractor through 2008, U.S. officials said. The indictment alleges that Drake exchanged hundreds of e-mails with an unidentified reporter[s] for a national newspaper and served as a source for its articles about Bush administration intelligence policies between February 2006 and November 2007, U.S. officials said.

Drake was indicted by a federal grand jury in Maryland, the Justice Department said.

The indictment does not name the newspaper. It also does not detail the subject matter of the classified information or the articles that contained the information.

Drake has been charged with willful retention of classified information, obstruction of justice and making false statements, Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer said.

I'll help fill in the blanks.

The programs were the Terrorist Surveillance Program which tracked communications to known terrorist cells which had a terminus in a foreign nation, and the SWIFT Program which tracked (and interrupted) the international transfer of funds between terrorist entities and their supporters. The reporters are Eric Lichtblau and James Risen. The "national paper" is the Tired Gray Crone of New York.

If you subscribe to the NYT, today would be an excellent day to cancel that subscription.


TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
/cgi-bin/mt-tb.cgi/38783.

Comments (25)

A Barry pardon is surely in... (Below threshold)
914:

A Barry pardon is surely in the offing.

Given the Obama/Holder 'Jus... (Below threshold)
Wright:

Given the Obama/Holder 'Justice' department, he will probably be let off to go write a book about the eeeevil Bush administration. If justice were truly served, he would be shot for treason.

I would suggest that the ad... (Below threshold)
jim m:

I would suggest that the administration might spin this as an example of the corruption and recklessness of the Bush White House.

Otherwise they would have stopped this long ago before it got to the grand jury.

Additionally, the last thing Barry wants is someone ratting him out to a newspaper. Not that any liberal reporter would ever think to advance a story line critical of The One. But Barry isn't one for playing games with people who might give him bad pub. Consider this one a preemptive toss under the bus.

Gee, did you get a pool goi... (Below threshold)
Maggie Mama:

Gee, did you get a pool going as to which newspaper? Put me down for The New York Times ... they're famous for publishing US secrets.

Well, for the New York Time... (Below threshold)
Caesar Augustus:

Well, for the New York Times the means are always justified by the ends.

In related news, Thomas A. ... (Below threshold)
Jay Guevara:

In related news, Thomas A. Drake is reported today to be under consideration as a nominee for the Supreme Court.

Now we need someone to leak... (Below threshold)
kyle:

Now we need someone to leak and publish Drake's, Lichtblau's and Risen's home addresses. Oh, wait, that would be wrong. Maybe just their bank account info and SocSec numbers. Oh wait, that would be wrong too. It's only leaking and publication of national security info that's ok and cool.
Fucking bastards.

"The indictment does not... (Below threshold)
Oyster:

"The indictment does not name the newspaper. It also does not detail the subject matter of the classified information or the articles that contained the information."

They know they don't have to tells us who, what secrets or what paper.

Unfortunately, the scum reporters walk scott free. There was no purpose for leaking or reporting that information other than to foment more outrage - as if we didn't have enough at the time - because they really just wanted to hurt Bush so bad they were willing to help terrorists.

Wright:h... (Below threshold)
_Mike_:

Wright:

he will probably be let off to go write a book about the eeeevil Bush administration.

Doubtful. More likely that'll be a mandatory part of the plea bargain.

It's a shame that the Left is/was so bent on undermining President Bush that they were willing to put National Security at risk.
(Note: I'm simply saying this because I'm certain that should the President have been the current one that the statement would mirror the reaction of the Left. Oh and.. the leaker would be considered a racist.)

A couple of minutes of rese... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

A couple of minutes of research, by wizbang; the actual relevant facts surrounding the case, no surprise- would have disclosed that the national security 'whistleblower leaking' was almost certinly given to a reporter writing for the Baltimore Sun, who now works for the Wall Street Journal- nothing to do with The New York Times.

By the way, the upshot of the material leaked was that this NSA program was a giant expensive boondoggle -no surprise as well: From the original Baltimore Sun articles:

Trailblazer is "the biggest boondoggle going on now in the intelligence community," said Matthew Aid, who has advised three recent federal commissions and panels that investigated the Sept. 11 intelligence failures.

Complex from the start -- the initial Trailblazer plan called for more than 1,000 priority items -- the project ballooned as it was passed through three separate NSA divisions, each with its own priorities, former intelligence officials said.

When the agency's inspector general investigated the project's first three years, it found "inadequate management and oversight" of private contractors and overpayment for the work that was done, according to a recently declassified version of the 2003 report obtained by the Baltimore Sun through a Freedom of Information Act request.


So this guy 'leaking' broke... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

So this guy 'leaking' broke the law. But Pinch, who published the information, didn't break the law. That right?

SCrickmore:<blockquo... (Below threshold)
_Mike_:

SCrickmore:

By the way, the upshot of the material leaked was that this NSA program was a giant expensive boondoggle

So there's some merit to breaking the law if it's a government program that's a "giant expensive boondoggle" ? Hmm... Obamacare ?

Generally I'm for protecti... (Below threshold)
Steve Crickmore:

Generally I'm for protecting the rights of whistleblowers that push politicians or bureacrats into acting. There is always alot of internal intimidation not to come forward with obvious security dysfunctional situations. For example, If the press or public had known about the complete and deliberate lack of sharing of information and co-operation between the CIA and the FBI on militant Islamic terror suspects in the country, 9-11 would never have happened.

Generally I'm for ... (Below threshold)
Brett:
Generally I'm for protecting the rights of whistleblowers that push politicians or bureacrats into acting.

I would agree with you in general for whistleblowers. Enron, fine and dandy, But this was CLASSIFIED INFORMATION. You don't get to decide to disclose it because you decide it needs to be know, you have NO idea what the implications might be. That's why it's a FELONY.

A public hanging on the Mal... (Below threshold)
Roy:

A public hanging on the Mall would be good.

When the agency's ... (Below threshold)
jim m:
When the agency's inspector general investigated the project's first three years, it found "inadequate management and oversight" of private contractors and overpayment for the work that was done,

And yet in the Bush administration they didn't crucify the IG or fire his ass over bogus charges. Why is it that IG's in GOP administrations who find incompetence and corruption are celebrated whistle blowers and IG's who find the same in dem administrations are run out of town on a rail?

Crickmore? You're part of this pathology. Care to provide any insight on the issue? Or is the complete lack of any moral rudder the simple explanation?

"and continued to work with... (Below threshold)
xiphos:

"and continued to work with the agency as a high-ranking contractor through 2008"

Why did the NSA need " a high-ranking contractor"?

This is going to be interesting.
Get a Big tree and lots of rope ready.

"If the press or public had... (Below threshold)
GarandFan:

"If the press or public had known about the complete and deliberate lack of sharing of information and co-operation between the CIA and the FBI on militant Islamic terror suspects in the country, 9-11 would never have happened."

You can thank Jamie Gorelick for that. Deputy Attorney General in the Clinton administration.

[email protected] ar... (Below threshold)

[email protected]

The article you cite falls outside of the date ranges provided in the indictment.

Thank you for playing.

This time it might not be t... (Below threshold)
bobdog:

This time it might not be the sleazy Old Grey Lady.

Shepard Smith at Fox reported tonight that the reporter involved works for the Wall Street Journal.

Politico names a Baltimore Sun reporter who now works for the Wall Street Journal:

"Neither the newspaper nor the reporter were named in the indictment, but outside observers of the NSA said details in the charges point to an award-winning series of Baltimore Sun articles written by Siobhan Gorman, who now covers intelligence for the Wall Street Journal."

sc - "Generally I'm for... (Below threshold)
Marc:

sc - "Generally I'm for protecting the rights of whistleblowers that push politicians or bureacrats into acting."

As you apparently are in this case...

DAMN the 10, count'em, 10 felony charges this "patriot" is charged with.

"If you subscribe to the... (Below threshold)
914:

"If you subscribe to the NYT, today would be an excellent day to cancel that subscription"

Personally I wouldn't wipe my ass with that rag. The only ones that still subscribes after years of "accidental" intelligence releases should be 1.) A sleeper cell Al Quaeda agent. Sure to get useful info regularly. Or 2.) College journalism professors who use it to show how evil Conservatives are ruining the universe and how to subvert them through treasonous yellow journalism and giving the enemy a heads up.

More on that Gorman deal. ... (Below threshold)
Arthur:

More on that Gorman deal. The stories leaked seem to be more in the whistleblower vein than national security violations. Things like the horrible electrical infrastructure at NSA HQ.

(from the end of the linked article)
Her articles as a reporter for The Baltimore Sun examined the failings of several major NSA modernization programs as well as problems with supplying the agency's electric power demands. Some of her articles were honored with a top prize from the Society for Professional Journalists, reports the Times.

"Former NSA executive charg... (Below threshold)

"Former NSA executive charged with leaking information to newspaper" very bad news for the economy of USA....
http://www.financialculture.com

Arthur @ 23,Could ... (Below threshold)

Arthur @ 23,

Could be. Could also be a smoke screen to shield Lichtblau, Risen, and the Tired Gray Crone.

Th




Advertisements









rightads.gif

beltwaybloggers.gif

insiderslogo.jpg

mba_blue.gif

Follow Wizbang

Follow Wizbang on FacebookFollow Wizbang on TwitterSubscribe to Wizbang feedWizbang Mobile

Contact

Send e-mail tips to us:

[email protected]

Fresh Links

Credits

Section Editor: Maggie Whitton

Editors: Jay Tea, Lorie Byrd, Kim Priestap, DJ Drummond, Michael Laprarie, Baron Von Ottomatic, Shawn Mallow, Rick, Dan Karipides, Michael Avitablile, Charlie Quidnunc, Steve Schippert

Emeritus: Paul, Mary Katherine Ham, Jim Addison, Alexander K. McClure, Cassy Fiano, Bill Jempty, John Stansbury, Rob Port

In Memorium: HughS

All original content copyright © 2003-2010 by Wizbang®, LLC. All rights reserved. Wizbang® is a registered service mark.

Powered by Movable Type Pro 4.361

Hosting by ServInt

Ratings on this site are powered by the Ajax Ratings Pro plugin for Movable Type.

Search on this site is powered by the FastSearch plugin for Movable Type.

Blogrolls on this site are powered by the MT-Blogroll.

Temporary site design is based on Cutline and Cutline for MT. Graphics by Apothegm Designs.

Author Login



Terms Of Service

DCMA Compliance Notice

Privacy Policy