May 21, 2013
Gary Pruitt, president and chief executive officer of the Associated Press, said that the Department of Justice (DoJ) seizure of phone records from journalists has made sources unwilling to speak out because they cannot be guaranteed anonymity.
Pruitt said: “And if they restrict that apparatus … the people of the United States will only know what the government wants them to know and that’s not what the framers of the Constitution had in mind when they wrote the First Amendment.”
For two months during 2012, the DoJ syphoned data pertaining to the incidents regarding their claim that the AP was in cahoots with al-Qaeda.
The story published by AP regarded how last spring the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) was conducting an operation in Yemen to stop al-Qaeda from successfully obtaining a bomb and detonating it on an airplane in the US. AP apparently knew more about the operation than they should have.
In a written statement, the DoJ explained: “Those regulations require us to make every reasonable effort to obtain information through alternative means before even considering a subpoena for the phone records of a member of the media. We must notify the media organization in advance unless doing so would pose a substantial threat to the integrity of the investigation. Because we value the freedom of the press, we are always careful and deliberative in seeking to strike the right balance between the public interest in the free flow of information and the public interest in the fair and effective administration of our criminal laws.”
Attorney General Eric Holder appeared before the House Judicial Committee last week to explain the decision of the Department of Justice (DoJ) to subpoena journalist’s records that were tied to an investigation leak.
Holder said: “I do not know with regard to this particular case why that was or was not done….I am not familiar with the reasons why the email was disrupted in the way that it was. I have faith in the people who would actually be responsible for this case they were aware of the rules and they followed them. But I don’t have a factual basis to answer the question because I was recused.”
Comparisons between President Obama and former president Richard Nixon show that the two are alike in that they share attributes such as being “thin-skinned, felt persecuted by the opposition party, had a penchant for classifying political adversaries — and journalists — as ‘enemies’.”
Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Convention (RNC) stated that Obama has “built up an atmosphere of guerilla warfare” and “this is the problem with the entire situation [with the AP], with the IRS, with Benghazi: you have all these situations — all these unprecedented scandals — yet the president knows nothing about it.”
FoxNews is the latest mainstream media outlet to have been invaded by a seizure of information conducted by the DoJ.
James Rosen, correspondent for FoxNews, is accused of being part of an information leak regarding a story from 2009 involving the UN and North Korea.
Rosen was tracked through security-badge information swiped at the State Department. Stephen Jim-Woo Kim, adviser at the State Department, was also tracked the same way as Rosen.
Surprisingly, mainstream media is defaming FoxNews for not being real news; as if corporate-controlled media on any level is unbiased and objective.
The point of scrutiny should be the Obama administration’s obvious disregard for the 1st Amendment and the right of the press to expose governmental corruption.
Ken Auletta, journalist for the New Yorker, explained that: “The framers had in mind the First Amendment, basically. … They gave the First Amendment as a way of giving a fourth branch of government — in fact, the press — an ability to question those in power in any of those three branches of government.”
In November of 2012, Obama issued a presidential memorandum entitled “National Insider Threat Policy and Minimum Standards for Executive Branch Insider Threat Programs” that outlines the provision “and guidance to promote the development of effective insider threat programs within departments and agencies to deter, detect, and mitigate actions by employees who may represent a threat to national security.”
This presidential memorandum clearly defines Obama’s desire to quash any intelligence leaks that may occur under his watch. Regardless of the future treatment of federal whistleblowers, this executive-created extension of cybersecurity compliments the Intelligence Authorization Act (IAA) that is being redefined for 2013.
The National Insider Threat Policy (NITP) is still classified, yet the referenced document describes “minimum standards” for stifling federal information leaks that would indicate the release of intelligence considered secret for the protection of national security. Federal employees that are privy to such information would be monitored by this directive.
The Insider Threat Task Force, an interagency created to minimize the dangers to national security posed by “unauthorized disclosures” of intelligence, will be empowered to unilaterally prevent information sharing. Sensitive data as collected by the Pentagon, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), and other federal agencies tasked with obtaining information have measures in place to protect employee’s ability to have access to such data; as well as having to gain chain-of-command permission with an ever present need-to-know parameter.
Obama further defines this safety measure by stating: “Our nation’s security requires classified information to be shared immediately with authorized users around the world but also requires sophisticated and vigilant means to ensure it is shared securely.”
The Obama administration has been posturing themselves behind the scenes to establish “adequate protections to our classified information while at the same time sharing the information with all who reasonably need it to do their jobs.”
With executive order 13587, Obama set out to “improve the security of classified networks . . . and responsible sharing and safeguarding of classified information.”
While claiming to be concerned with remaining “consistent with appropriate protections for privacy and civil liberties”, Obama ensures that digital data that is defined by the US government as sensitive can and will be under policy regulations of interagency bodies of correlating departments. This blanket statement applies to “information security, personnel security, and systems security; address both internal and external security threats and vulnerabilities; and provide policies and minimum standards for sharing classified information both within and outside the Federal Government.”