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Jewish World Review
Jan. 4, 2006
/ 4 Teves, 5766
A leak is a leak is a leak
Hello, 2006. The New York Times kicked off the new year by refusing to answer its own ombudsman's questions about the
timing of the newspapers anonymous illegal leak-dependent National Security Agency monitoring story. Long live
transparency and accountability.
Meanwhile, Times reporter James Risen launched his anonymous illegal leak-dependent book, State of War, with a
self-congratulatory appearance on NBCs Today Show. Risen's leakers, he told Couric, were the opposite of the Valerie
Plame case leakers because his people came forward "for the best reasons." How do we know that's true? Because Risen
says it is. So there.
Risen then patted himself and his bosses on the back for their "great public service" in publishing the story (never too soon to
go Pulitzer Prize-begging) and heaped more praise on his anonymous sources as "truly American patriots." Risen also told
Couric that many of his law-breaking sources "came to us because they thought you have to follow the rules and you have to
follow the law." Uh-huh.
Asked about the timing of the original story (held a year, then published in the midst of Senate debate over the Patriot Act
and a few weeks before the release of his book), Risen said "it wasn't my decision" and refused to "discuss the internal
In other words: Keeping secrets to protect counterterrorism operations is an impeachable offense, but keeping secrets to
protect the Gray Lady's fanny is an elite media prerogative.
In his book, Risen finds evidence of sinister motives everywhere. This passage on p. 53 is typical:
The existence of the [NSA surveillance] Program has been kept so secret that senior Bush administration officials
have gone to great lengths to hide the origins of the intelligence it gathers. When the NSA finds potentially useful
intelligence in the U.S.-based telecommunications switches, it is "laundered" before it is widely distributed to case
officers at the CIA or special agents of the FBI, officials said. Reports are said not to identify that the intelligence
came from intercepts of U.S.-based telecommunications.
Never mind that such practice, dating back to at least World War II, is routine when sources are classified.
Oblivious to the need to keep classified programs secret, Risen goes on to castigate the Bush administration for not asking
Congress to publicly debate the NSA program.
He ends the book with a Cindy Sheehan-esque sermon attacking neoconservatives and the right-wing pundits who
supported them, and pays tribute to the heroic "disaffected moderates," including, we presume, his law-breaking sources.
If Risen's good leak/ bad leak spin sounds familiar, that's because Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) was plying it this
weekend on Fox News Sunday. Asked about the Justice Department criminal investigation into the NYT/NSA leaks,
Schumer sputtered: "There are differences between felons and whistleblowers, and we ought to wait until the investigation
occurs to decide what happened."
Schumer, as I've noted previously, has some nerve pontificating about secrets and disclosures. Guess he puts his former
Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee staffers, Katie Barge and Lauren Weiner, in the noble "whistleblower"
category. (I checked with the US Attorney's Office in Washington, D.C., last week, by the way, and the investigation into
Barge and Weiner's involvement in illegally obtaining a credit report on Maryland's lieutenant governor Michael S. Steele is
Contrary to the one-armed Democrat plumbers' wishes, you can't just selectively plug the leaks you don't like and let the
other half flood freely. The law regarding disclosures of classified information does not grant an exception based on leakers'
motives. See U.S. Code Title 18, Part I, Chapter 37, Section 798. Nope, no Bush Derangement Syndrome exemptions
In any case, we'll soon see if and how long Risen is willing to stay in jail to protect his pure and patriotic illegal leakers.
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Michelle Malkin Archives
In Unhinged: Liberals Gone Wild
adj : affected with madness or insanity; [syn: brainsick, crazy, demented, distracted, disturbed, mad, sick, unbalanced]
The American Heritage Dictionary
*** Warning: Unhinged liberals are hazardous to the nation's health.
They're slashing your tires. Burning your lawns. Heaving pies at Republican pundits. Hurling racist epithets at minority conservatives. Nursing nutty conspiracy theories. And pining publicly for the murder of President Bush.
And they call us crazy?
In In Unhinged: Liberals Gone Wild, Michelle Malkin plays conservative Margaret Mead to the alien political creatures of the American Left. With uproarious detail and rollicking reportage, Malkin chronicles the bizarre world of leftists gone mad in their natural habitats: the mainstream media, academia, Hollywood, and Washington.
Unhinged unmasks liberals who've completely abandoned rationality and reality. They're taking chainsaws and bayonets to campaign signs. Running down political opponents with their cars. Setting fire to political opponents in effigy. Defacing war memorials. Swiping yellow ribbons off cars. And supporting the fragging of American troops.
In Unhinged, you'll meet:
- The Top 10 Unhinged Leftists, Celebrities, Media Liberals, and Politicians. - The Pennsylvania Democrat who repeatedly screamed "faggot" at his Republican opponents on the Senate floor. - The Florida Democrat who tried to run down former Florida Secretary of State Katherine Harris with his Cadillac. - The Democrat congressman who claimed the capture of Saddam Hussein was staged by GOP operatives to help the Bush re-election campaign. - The veteran newsman who claimed that Bush advisor Karl Rove and Osama bin Laden are working hand-in-hand to help the Republican Party. - And hundreds more unhinged liberals gone wild!
With wit, wisdom, and a bullet-proof vest, Michelle Malkin ruthlessly and raucously skewers the myths of liberal tolerance, peace, and civility. Unhinged shows how conservatives are driving their opponents mad. The good news for liberals? Self-help starts here.
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