Thursday, August 9, 2012

The "New" National Security State

Top Secret in America: The Rise of the New American Security State
Dana Priest and William Arkin

            “Calling the reaction to al-Qaeda’s 9/11 attack a ‘war’ ensured that the government could justify classifying everything associated with fighting it. Under President George Bush, journalists’ efforts to figure out how the United States was waging this war…were often criticized by senior administrative leaders, members of Congress, cable television pundits, even the public. Many of those journalists hoped that would change under…Barack Obama. It is true that the president and his cabinet members have not publicly disparaged the news media as much as [Bush] did. But behind the scenes, the situation is actually worse….Obama’s Justice Department has taken a more aggressive tack  against unauthorized disclosure of classified information by pursuing so-called leak investigations than the Bush administration. Recent indictments were issued against a former CIA employee who allegedly talked to book author James Risen…about a botched attempt to slip faulty nuclear plans to Iran; and a former National Security Agency official, Thomas Drake, who helped a Baltimore Sun reporter detail the waste of billions of dollars at his agency. In early June 2011, the government was forced to offer Drake a deal because its lawyers said they did not want to reveal classified information related to the case in court. Drake accepted the…offer…[and] expected to serve no prison time. Then there is the case of former Justice Department official Thomas Tamm. In August 2007, eighteen FBI agents, some with guns drawn, burst into his home with only his wife and children present, to raid his files during an investigation into his alleged role in helping the New York Times develop its seminal warrantless surveillance story in 2004. The government dropped his case nearly four years later, in April 2011, after Tamm’s career had been ruined and he faced financial peril.” [pp. xx-xxi]

Read it and weep. Welcome to the New World Order.

No comments:

Post a Comment