Loose lips sink ships

Democrats are upset about the latest leak of sensitive classified information:

Senate Democrats on Tuesday blasted leaks to the press about a cyberattack against Iran and warned the disclosure of President Obama’s order could put the United States at risk of a retaliatory strike. . .

Feinstein and Kerry, however, rejected charges from Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) that the leaks were made deliberately in an attempt to boost President Obama’s reelection bid. . . The White House has denied that it was an authorized leak.

I don’t know if it was an “authorized leak”, but this keeps happening. We blow the identity of Shakil Afridi, the doctor who helped us identify Osama bin Laden, and he goes to prison for 33 years. We leak the fact that we’ve infiltrated al Qaeda, and it blows the agent’s cover. (Plus, it turned out that the leak, to the extent that it credited US intelligence, wasn’t even accurate!)

I’m tired of debating each time whether the White House authorized the leak, or whether the leak — which cast the administration in a good light — was a lone wolf. It doesn’t matter. The White House’s acquiescence sends the message that this is acceptable. They need to make a very public effort to get to the bottom of it.

Compare the full-court press when the Valerie Plame’s identity was leaked to the press. That information was not closely held, and its leak wasn’t damaging, and the White House still launched an investigation that dogged it for years. Here we have a series of leaks that are actually damaging, and aside from a few remarks from Senate Democrats, it’s crickets.

UPDATE: The White House says it takes the leaks “very seriously”, but they won’t authorize a special prosecutor, or — as far as they are willing to say — any action at all. Well then.

(Previous post.)

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