Investigative journalism and the War On Leaks

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Anonymous, May 18, 2012.

  1. Anonymous Member

    the rest of the article :
    In Sweden some journalists wanted to show how easy it was to buy a firearm. They bought one then they went back to their hotel and call the cops to give them the gun. They were convicted.
    In France, journalists are being listen by the DCRI (French NSA) and it happened that they had their computers stolen.

    Soon they will not be any more investigations reporters.
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  2. The Wrong Guy Member

    Glenn Greenwald@ggreenwald 7m
    To see why the Obama DOJ's pursuit of NYT's Jim Risen is so pernicious, see the background here:

    Climate of Fear: Jim Risen v. the Obama administration - Salon

    New York Times reporter Jim Risen says Obama's actions "will have a chilling effect on freedom of the press in the U.S."

    By Glenn Greenwald,June 23, 2011

    The Obama DOJ’s effort to force New York Times investigative journalist Jim Risen to testify in a whistleblower prosecution and reveal his source is really remarkable and revealing in several ways; it should be receiving much more attention than it is. On its own, the whistleblower prosecution and accompanying targeting of Risen are pernicious, but more importantly, it underscores the menacing attempt by the Obama administration — as Risen yesterday pointed out — to threaten and intimidate whistleblowers, journalists and activists who meaningfully challenge what the government does in secret.

    The subpoena to Risen was originally issued but then abandoned by the Bush administration, and then revitalized by Obama lawyers. It is part of the prosecution of Jeffrey Sterling, a former CIA agent whom the DOJ accuses of leaking to Risen the story of a severely botched agency plot — from 11 years ago — to infiltrate Iran’s nuclear program, a story Risen wrote about six years after the fact in his 2006 best-selling book, State of War. The DOJ wants to force Risen to testify under oath about whether Sterling was his source.

    Like any good reporter would, Risen is categorically refusing to testify and, if it comes to that (meaning if the court orders him to testify), he appears prepared to go to prison in defense of press freedoms and to protect his source (just as some young WikiLeaks supporters are courageously prepared to do rather than cooperate with the Obama DOJ’s repellent persecution of the whistleblowing site). Yesterday, Risen filed a Motion asking the Court to quash the government’s subpoena on the ground that it violates the First Amendment’s free press guarantee, and as part of the Motion, filed a lengthy Affidavit that is amazing in several respects.

    Continued at

    USA v. Jeffrey Alexander Sterling: Selected Case Files


    Updates from today:

    In Major Ruling, Court Orders Times Reporter to Testify - New York Times

    Appeals court: Reporter can't protect source - SFGate

    Appeals Court Reverses Order to Quash Subpoena Against Risen (PDF file)

    News updates:[NewsVertical+SortByDate%3d%221%22]
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  3. The Wrong Guy Member

    Court Rejects Appeal Bid by Writer in Leak Case | New York Times

    October 15, 2013

    A federal appeals court on Tuesday declined to hear an appeal by James Risen, an author and a reporter for The New York Times, who was ordered in July to testify in the trial of a former Central Intelligence Agency official accused of leaking information to him.

    The decision, by the full United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, is expected to set up an appeal by Mr. Risen to the Supreme Court in what has become a major case over the scope and limitations of First Amendment press freedoms.

    “We are disappointed by the Fourth Circuit’s ruling,” said Joel Kurtzberg, a lawyer for Mr. Risen. “My client remains as resolved as ever to continue fighting.”

    In July, a three-judge panel of the appeals court ruled in a 2-to-1 decision to order Mr. Risen to testify in the trial of the C.I.A. officer, Jeffrey Sterling. It is rare for a full appeals court to grant petitions to rehear cases that have already been decided by a panel. Still, the vote count was notably lopsided: 13 voted to reject the petition, while only Judge Roger L. Gregory, who had cast the dissenting vote in July, wanted to grant it.

    A Justice Department spokesman declined to comment. The Obama administration had urged the appeals court not to rehear the matter, saying the ruling by the panel had been correct and that no reconsideration of the matter was justified.

    Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. recently issued new guidelines for leak investigations that are intended to offer greater protections against subpoenas involving reporters’ phone calls or testimony, and the Obama administration has backed legislation in Congress that would create a federal statute giving judges greater power to quash such subpoenas.

    Still, under Mr. Holder, the Justice Department has pursued Mr. Risen’s testimony for years as part of a broader crackdown on leaks. The case against Mr. Sterling is one of seven such cases it has brought, compared with three under all previous administrations; an eighth, against Chelsea Manning, formerly Pfc. Bradley Manning — who was convicted of giving files to WikiLeaks — was handled by military prosecutors.

    The judges who rejected Mr. Risen’s appeal did not explain their votes, but Judge Gregory wrote a brief dissent reprising his view that reporters should have some legal protection from being forced to testify against an alleged source. Calling the issue raised by the case one of “exceptional importance,” he said that for “public opinion to serve as a meaningful check on governmental power, the press must be free to report to the people the government’s use (or misuse) of that power.”

    He also wrote that “some reporters, including the one in this case, may be imprisoned for failing to reveal their sources, even though reporters seek only to shed light on the workings of our government in the name of its citizens.”

    Mr. Risen has said he would go to prison rather than comply with a judicial order to testify about his sources, and on Tuesday he said, “I am determined to keep fighting.”

    Continued at
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  4. The Wrong Guy Member

    Supreme Court Rejects Reporter's Privilege Case, As NYT Reporter Faces Jail for Protecting His Source

    By Trevor Timm, Freedom of the Press Foundation

    The Supreme Court today rejected New York Times reporter James Risen's appeal of a 4th Circuit decision that ruled the government can compel him to reveal his source under oath. The case, one of the most important for reporter's privilege in decades, means that Risen has exhausted his appeals and must now either testify in the leak trial of former CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling, or face jail time for being in contempt of court. Risen has admirably vowed to go to prison rather than comply.

    This is the latest victory of the Obama administration in their crackdown on sources, and in turn, investigative journalism. As the New York Times again reminded us today, they have "pursued leaks aggressively, bringing criminal charges in eight cases, compared with three under all previous administrations combined."

    Make no mistake, this case is a direct attack on the press. The Justice Department has recently tightened its "guidelines" for subpoenaing reporters (which have no enforcement mechanism) and the Obama administration claims it supports a tepid journalist shield law, but this was the case where they could have shown they meant what they said about protecting journalists' rights. Instead, they argued to the court that reporter's privilege does not exist all, even comparing journalists who invoke the privilege to criminals who have received drugs.

    By going after Risen, the Obama administration has done more damage to reporter's privilege than any other case in forty years, including the Valerie Plame leak investigation that ensnared Judy Miller during the Bush administration. The Fourth Circuit is where many national security reporters live and work, and by eviscerating the privilege there, the government has made national security reporting that much harder in an age where there has already been an explosion in use of surveillance to root out sources of journalists.

    While the fight for reporter's privilege will certainly continue, and is by no means dead in much of the country, this case is another reminder that reporters can no longer rely on the legal process to protect their sources. Surveillance has become the government's go-to tool for rooting out a record number of sources and chilling all kinds of investigative journalism. Out of the eight source prosecutions under the Obama administration, the Sterling case is the only one where a reporter was called to testify. As an unnamed national security official reportedly once said a year ago, “the Risen subpoena is one of the last you’ll see. We don’t need to ask who you’re talking to. We know.”

    It's now incumbent upon reporters to use technology to help protect their sources from the first moment they start communicating with them. Encryption — whether it's used with email, chat, or phone calls — is now a vital tool that can no longer be looked at as a luxury or specialty. Whistleblower submission systems, like our SecureDrop project or Globaleaks, should become the norm rather than the exception.

    Despite the damage its already done to reporter's privilege on the whole, the government can and should prevent Risen from going to jail by declining to call him to testify in the Sterling trial. Since the Attorney General has repeatedly stated that no reporter will go to jail for doing his or her job, that seems like the least they can do.

    As a small tribute to Risen, today is a fitting day to re-read the book chapter that the government has subpoenaed him over. He exposed a disastrous operation by the CIA, where they literally handed over designs to a nuclear bomb to Iran. It is a truly riveting read and the public is better served by knowing what happened.

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  5. The Wrong Guy Member

    Eric Holder was the worst Attorney General for the press in a generation. We deserve better.

    By Trevor Timm, Freedom of the Press Foundation

    Attorney General Eric Holder announced he would resign yesterday, after serving as the nation’s top law enforcement official since President Obama came into office in 2009. Holder will leave behind a complex and hotly debated legacy at the Justice Department on many issues, but one thing is clear: he was the worst Attorney General on press freedom issues in a generation, possibly since Richard Nixon’s John Mitchell pioneered the subpoenaing of reporters and attempted to censor the Pentagon Papers.

    Holder presided over the largest legal crackdown on journalists’ sources in American history. Under his watch, the Justice Department prosecuted more sources and whistleblowers under the Espionage Act than all previous administrations combined, and many of those cases directly led to surveillance of reporters. In one, the Justice Department secretly subpoenaed twenty Associated Press phone lines, gathering information on over one hundred AP reporters. In another, the Justice Department accused Fox News reporter James Rosen in court documents of being a “co-conspirator” and “aiding and abetting” State Department employee Stephen Kim in violating the Espionage Act. Both moves by the Justice Department were personally approved by the Attorney General.

    After a loud public backlash, the Justice Department recently tightened its media guidelines, but that hasn’t stopped them from attempting to force one of the nation’s best national security reporters, New York Times’ James Risen, into jail for refusing to testify against an alleged source. In Risen’s case, the Justice Department caused the most damage to reporter’s privilege in decades when it convinced the Fourth Circuit to do away with the privilege in its jurisdiction altogether. Shamefully, Holder’s Justice Department argued in front of the Court of Appeals that not only did Risen not qualify for reporter’s privilege, but the privilege did not exist at all, literally comparing reporters who protect sources who tell them about sensitive information to receiving drugs from a drug dealer and refusing to talk about it.

    Despite all this, Eric Holder had previously promised that, “As long as I’m attorney general, no reporter who is doing his job is going to go to jail.” How the Justice Department could pursue contempt of court charges against Risen but keep him out of jail was unknown. But now the Holder is stepping down, the Justice Department is not obligated to abide by his promise.

    The Justice Department’s pursuit of Risen has led to a petition signed by over 100,000 citizens, and over twenty Pulitzer Prize winners issued statements condemning it. The Justice Department has still refused to drop its pursuit.

    And often forgotten in the Justice Department’s awful crackdown on the press, is its the sprawling, four-year grand jury investigation into WikiLeaks for publishing classified State and Defense Department documents in 2010 and 2011, under a “conspiracy to commit espionage” theory where WikiLeaks may or may not have asked source Chelsea Manning to send them the documents. Many have referred to it as the largest investigation of a publisher in American history.

    Despite the fact that the investigation has been widely condemned by legal experts and Constitutional scholars — former Times general counsel James Goodale said Holder might as well be investigating WikiLeaks for “a conspiracy to commit journalism” — recent court documents show the grand jury is still active.

    Any indictment would leave all US newspapers in the perilous position of constantly under threat of prosecution when publishing supposedly “secret” information. But even without an indictment, the open-ended investigation chills WikiLeaks’ work and anyone caught in its wide net.

    In addition, the Justice Department's handling of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and its aggressive tactics in court to keep basic information from journalists and the public has been deplorable, especially given Holder's promise to reform FOIA when he first came into office. Holder is also attempting to expand the controversial 'state secrets' privilege to new lengths, after promising to reform that as well.

    The next attorney general, whoever it is, will have a lot of issues on his or her plate. But better respecting the rights of reporters and the First Amendment should be at the top of that list.

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  6. Disambiguation Global Moderator

    "Eric Holder was the worst Attorney General for the press in a generation. We deserve better."
    • Like Like x 1
  7. The Wrong Guy Member

    New DOJ Civil Rights Chief Vanita Gupta Known For 'Trailblazing' Work

    By Ryan J. Reilly

    The newly named acting head of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division is a well-respected ACLU lawyer who has long been active on criminal justice reform issues, has called for the decriminalization of marijuana and is a critic of the controversial practice of civil asset forfeiture.

    Vanita Gupta, deputy legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union, will take over the Civil Rights Division next week, Attorney General Eric Holder announced on Monday. Gupta will also be nominated by President Barack Obama to lead the Civil Rights Division on a permanent basis, an official familiar with the process confirmed.

    Gupta will fill a job that was originally supposed to go to Debo Adegbile, who came under conservative attack for the role he played in helping get a man convicted of killing a police officer off death row due to flawed jury instructions. Adegbile was not confirmed by the Senate, and the Civil Rights Division has been without a permanent leader since Tom Perez stepped down from the position to become labor secretary last year.

    In a statement, Holder, who has made civil rights and criminal justice reform a top priority, said that Gupta had “spent her entire career working to ensure that our nation lives up to its promise of equal justice for all.” He also praised her ability to work across the aisle.

    Continued here:
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  8. A.O.T.F Member

    Update: In an emailed statement to The Intercept on Friday, New Zealand Police spokesman Ross Henderson denied that officers were aware Hager was working with leaked U.S. government documents. Henderson insisted that the raid was aimed at seeking information related to the source for Dirty Politics, and added that the police force “has a duty to appropriately investigate matters involving alleged criminal activity, regardless of a person’s occupation or position, and Mr. Hager is no exception.”Whether Hager’s material is covered by a law in New Zealand that protects a reporter’s right to keep his sources confidential, Henderson said, depends on whether Hager “meets the legal definition of a journalist” which “is now a matter for the court to rule on.”

    Sauce -

    OFFS :rolleyes:

    Nicky Hager (born 1958) is a New Zealand investigative journalist. He has produced six books since 1996, covering topics such as intelligence networks, environmental issues and politics. He is the only New Zealand member of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.[1]

    The Center for Public Integrity (CPI) is an American nonprofit investigative journalism organization whose stated mission is "to reveal abuses of power, corruption and dereliction of duty by powerful public and private institutions in order to cause them to operate with honesty, integrity, accountability and to put the public interest first."[1] With over 50 staff members, CPI is one of the largest nonpartisan, nonprofit investigative centers in America.[2] It won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting.

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  9. meep meep Member

    They can excuse any action by not being sure if he's a journalist or not. " our bad, seems he was a real journalist". They already have the stuff and are dodging civil rights laws. Wtf is it about the what's a journalist shit. They did it to Greenwald. Is it a confusion with every investigative journalist?
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  10. Anonymous Member

    From The New Yorker...

    Daily Comment

    Today 12:00 am

    How Edward Snowden Changed Journalism

    By Steve Coll


    It had been evident for some time before Snowden surfaced that best practices in investigative reporting and source protection needed to change.

    “Citizenfour,” the new documentary about Edward Snowden, by Laura Poitras, is, among other things, a work of journalism about journalism. It opens with quotations from correspondence between Poitras and a new source who identifies himself only as Citizenfour. This source turns out to be Snowden. Soon, Poitras and Glenn Greenwald, at the time a columnist for the Guardian, travel to Hong Kong to meet Snowden in a hotel room.

    They don’t know, at this point, if Snowden is who he says he is. They don’t know if his materials are authentic. Yet Poitras turns on her camera right away. Greenwald, who attended law school, questions Snowden, quite effectively. Gradually, Snowden’s significance becomes clear. The sequence is enclosing and tense and has many remarkable facets. One is that we witness a historically significant exercise in reporting and source validation as it happens. It is as if Bob Woodward had filmed his initial meeting, in a garage, with Deep Throat.
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  11. The Wrong Guy Member

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  12. The Wrong Guy Member

    New York Times reporter James Risen may be offered deal to avoid jail | LA Times

    The Justice Department is considering offering New York Times reporter James Risen a deal that could enable him to avoid jail time over refusing to testify in a national security investigation and save face for prosecutors under increasing pressure for their handling of 1st Amendment issues, according to a senior Justice Department official.

    The department has been given a deadline of Tuesday by U.S. District Court Judge Leonie Brinkema to decide whether to enforce a subpoena requiring Risen to testify in the prosecution of CIA officer Jeffrey Sterling on charges of disclosing national defense secrets on Iran to Risen.

    Risen appealed the subpoena all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, which turned him down in June. Sterling's trial is scheduled to begin in January.

    The senior official, who was not authorized to speak publicly on the case, said Justice Department lawyers have asked Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. to approve an arrangement in which Risen does not have to name his source, but will testify about other circumstances surrounding his reporting.

    Continued here:
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  13. The Wrong Guy Member

    Defiant on Witness Stand, Times Reporter Says Little | New York Times

    After losing a seven-year legal battle, James Risen, a reporter for The New York Times, reluctantly took the witness stand in federal court here on Monday, but refused to answer any questions that could help the Justice Department identify his confidential sources.

    Mr. Risen said he would not say anything to help prosecutors bolster their case against Jeffrey A. Sterling, a former C.I.A. officer who is set to go on trial soon on charges of providing classified information to Mr. Risen for his 2006 book, “State of War.”


    Mr. Sterling’s trial is scheduled to begin next Monday. Prosecutors gave no indication in court whether, in light of Mr. Risen’s testimony Monday, they planned to call him as a witness.
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  14. A.O.T.F Member

    GCHQ captured emails of journalists from top international media

    • Snowden files reveal emails of BBC, NY Times and more
    • Agency includes investigative journalists on ‘threat’ list
    • Editors call on Cameron to act against snooping on media

    GCHQ’s bulk surveillance of electronic communications has scooped up emails to and from journalists working for some of the US and UK’s largest media organisations, analysis of documents released by whistleblower Edward Snowden reveals.

    Emails from the BBC, Reuters, the Guardian, the New York Times, Le Monde, the Sun, NBC and the Washington Post were saved by GCHQ and shared on the agency’s intranet as part of a test exercise by the signals intelligence agency.

    The disclosure comes as the British government faces intense pressure to protect the confidential communications of reporters, MPs and lawyers from snooping.

    The journalists’ communications were among 70,000 emails harvested in the space of less than 10 minutes on one day in November 2008 by one of GCHQ’s numerous taps on the fibre-optic cables that make up the backbone of the internet.

    Continued -

    tsgMl0u-_normal.png Gabriella Coleman @BiellaColeman · 6h 6 hours ago
    The latest revelations: that GCHQ spies on journalists is firm and sickening evidence the system is broken and needs a total re-haul.

    And I stand by what i said in an earlier comment, in an another thread. - They ( GCHQ) really are the fucking enemy.
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  15. The Wrong Guy Member

    Former CIA officer convicted in leak case | The Washington Post

    A former CIA officer involved in a highly secretive operation to give faulty nuclear plans to Iran was convicted Monday of giving classified information about his work to a New York Times reporter and author.

    Jeffrey Sterling, 47, of O’Fallon, Mo., was convicted of nine counts of unauthorized disclosure of national defense information and other related charges for leaking materials that prosecutors said put lives at risk and compromised one of the U.S. government’s few mechanisms to deter Iran’s nuclear aspirations. He stared expressionless at jurors as the verdict was read and hugged his sobbing wife afterward.

    U.S. District Judge Leonie M. Brinkema allowed Sterling to remain free on bond until his April 24 sentencing.

    Continued here:
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  16. The Wrong Guy Member

    Two out of Three Investigative Journalists in US Believe They're Being Spied On | Common Dreams

    In the wake of the NSA mass surveillance scandal, an overwhelming majority of investigative journalists believe that the U.S. government is spying on them, and large numbers say that this belief impacts the way they go about their reporting, a Pew Research Center poll released Thursday reveals.

    The findings are based on a December online survey, conducted in association with Columbia University’s Tow Center for Digital Journalism, of 671 journalists who are members of Investigative Reporters and Editors, Inc., which is a non-profit organization for journalists.

    According to the poll, approximately two out of three investigative journalists believe the U.S. government "has probably collected data" from their phones, emails, or online communications.

    For national security, foreign affairs, and federal government reporters, the number is even higher at 71 percent.
    Eighty percent of respondents think that their status as a journalist makes them more likely to be snooped on.

    These beliefs have real repercussions.

    Under the threat of surveillance, journalists are changing the way they go about their work, as the following graph summarizing report data shows:

    Continued here:
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  17. A.O.T.F Member

    (Comment on Article from RobVann)

    He's right.

    "ALL Editor's-in-chief" should be making the use of encryption MANDATORY!
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  18. The Wrong Guy Member

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  19. The Wrong Guy Member

    Why aren’t more news organizations protecting their e-mail with STARTTLS encryption?

    By Kevin Gallagher, Freedom of the Press Foundation

    The Guardian published a shocking story a few weeks ago showing that in 2008 Britain’s spy agency GCHQ collected and stored the e-mails of some of the world’s biggest news organizations, including the New York Times, Washington Post, and BBC. We wanted to find out which news organizations are still vulnerable to this mass spying technique, so we conducted a survey of 65 major news organizations to see if they have implemented a common security protocol known as STARTTLS that can protect their e-mails from being intercepted as they travel across the Internet.

    We found that news organizations like the Associated Press, Le Monde, the LA Times, CBS News, Forbes, Baltimore Sun, and Der Spiegel are still not protecting journalists and their sources from this type of surveillance, and are putting all of the people who communicate with them at risk of being spied on. You can see the full results of our survey below.

    Continued here:
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  20. The Wrong Guy Member

    CIA's Jeffrey Sterling Sentenced to 42 Months for Leaking to New York Times Journalist | The Intercept

    Jeffrey Sterling, a former CIA agent convicted of sharing classified information with a New York Times reporter, was sentenced today to three and a half years in prison, a significantly shorter term than had been expected.

    Sterling’s lawyers had asked the judge not to abide by sentencing guidelines calling for 19 to 24 years behind bars. They argued Sterling should be treated with the same leniency shown to former Gen. David Petraeus, who was allowed to plead guilty to a misdemeanor and avoid prison after admitting to leaking classified information to his biographer and then-girlfriend, Paula Broadwell. Sterling’s lawyers also pointed to the case of former CIA agent John Kiriakou, who was recently released from jail after a 30-month sentence for disclosing the name of a covert agent to a reporter, and to the 13-month-sentence handed down to Stephen Kim, who pleaded guilty to talking about a classified document with a Fox News reporter.

    “[Sterling] should be treated similarly to others convicted for the same crimes and not singled out for a long prison sentence because he elected to exercise his right to trial,” his lawyers stated in a pre-sentencing memorandum, noting that Sterling had taken his case to a jury rather than reaching a pre-trial plea bargain with prosecutors. “[T]he court cannot turn a blind eye to the positions the government has taken in similar cases.”
    U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema seemed to agree.

    “To put you at ease, the guidelines are too high,” Brinkema said as the sentencing hearing got underway, glancing at Sterling and his lawyers, Ed MacMahon and Barry Pollack.

    She went on to say that Sterling’s case was similar to Kiriakou’s, for which she had also been the presiding judge, because both involved the disclosure of the identity of an intelligence agent. She said Sterling should serve more time because Kiriakou had pleaded guilty whereas Sterling pleaded innocent and was found guilty by a jury. Brinkema added that “a clear message” had to be sent to people in the intelligence community that a price will be paid for revealing the identities of intelligence agents and assets, though she also said, in what appeared to be a reference to Petraeus not serving any prison time, that the judicial system had to be fair.

    Speaking to the media after the hearing, Pollack said, “We think (the jury) got it wrong. That said, the judge today got it right. She looked at all of the good work Jeffrey Sterling had done throughout his life and gave him a fair sentence under the circumstances. Today closes a sad chapter in a long saga.”

    The sentence, while one of the longest for a leaker in the Obama era, was far lower than some people had expected. Jesselyn Radack, director of National Security and Human Rights at the Government Accountability Project, told The Intercept that she had expected “a lot worse” than 42 months. “Any jail time is excessive in light of what Gen. Petraeus got, but in light of what the government was seeking, between 19 and 24 years, this is the least worst outcome,” she said. Radack noted, however, that the offense for which Brinkema sent Kiriakou and Sterling to prison was also committed by Petraeus, because the information he shared with Broadwell included the identities of covert agents.

    But in a series of its own pre-sentencing memos, the latest filed just a day before Brinkema issued her decision at the Alexandria federal courthouse, the prosecution claimed that Sterling’s conviction on nine counts in January was far more serious because he had been “willfully compromising a then-ongoing, extremely sensitive, closely-held operation designed to infiltrate and disrupt the nuclear weapons program of Iran and other rogue states, putting CIA assets at risk and exposing classified methods to our adversaries.”

    Continued here:
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  21. Anonymous Member

  22. The Wrong Guy Member

    US Court Rules to Keep Full CIA Torture Report Classified | Sputnik International

    In a civil action suit brought forward by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), District of Columbia Judge James Boasberg ruled Wednesday in the intelligence agency's favor, dismissing the human rights group's claim.
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  23. The Wrong Guy Member

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  24. A.O.T.F Member

    Google says government forced it to hand over Jacob Appelbaum's data for WikiLeaks grand jury


    “Google released another legal disclosure notice related to the United States government’s ongoing grand jury investigation into WikiLeaks,” Kevin Gosztola writes at Firedoglake.

    Google recently told Jacob Appelbaum, who has worked with WikiLeaks, that Google was ordered by the U.S. government to provide data from his account to federal investigators.

    From Firedoglake:

    Google’s full legal disclosure to Appelbaum consisted of 306 pages of documents. He did not post the disclosure in its entirety but shared screen shots of parts of the disclosure through his Twitter account.
    On April 1, the government apparently determined there was some information that could be disclosed to Appelbaum.

    The government seems to confirm in legal documents that it does not consider WikiLeaks to be a journalistic enterprise. It also writes, “The government does not concede that the [redacted] subscriber is a journalist,” referring to Appelbaum.

    Nevertheless, the government broaches the issue and insists “newsmen” may be subject to grand jury investigations of this intrusive nature.
    Google Reveals It Was Forced to Hand Over Journalist’s Data for WikiLeaks Grand Jury Investigation” [Firedoglake]

    Applebaum's tweets on Google's disclosure follow.

    Xk-mjIxF_bigger.jpeg Jacob Appelbaum@ioerror
    Odd &quot;due process&quot; in modern America. I have received another legal disclosure notice from Google: &quot;November 2009 to present.&quot;

    Continued -

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  25. A.O.T.F Member

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  26. Anonymous Member

    The whole package is available from Cryptome:

    35 Megabytes.
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  27. A.O.T.F Member

    Controversial GCHQ Unit Engaged in Domestic Law Enforcement, Online Propaganda, Psychology Research


    The spy unit responsible for some of the United Kingdom’s most controversial tactics of surveillance, online propaganda and deceit focuses extensively on traditional law enforcement and domestic activities — even though officials typically justify its activities by emphasizing foreign intelligence and counterterrorism operations.

    Documents published today by The Intercept demonstrate how the Joint Threat Research Intelligence Group (JTRIG), a unit of the signals intelligence agency Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), is involved in efforts against political groups it considers “extremist,” Islamist activity in schools, the drug trade, online fraud and financial scams.

    Though its existence was secret until last year, JTRIG quickly developed a distinctive profile in the public understanding, after documents from NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden revealed that the unit had engaged in “dirty tricks” like deploying sexual “honey traps” designed to discredit targets, launching denial-of-service attacks to shut down Internet chat rooms, pushing veiled propaganda onto social networks and generally warping discourse online.

    Continued -

    There is a definite correlation and connection to the below situation.

    Source -

    You can read all about their treacherous, low life activities. - Scroll to the bottom of the page, one will find the book, Undercover - The true story of Britain's secret police.

    Is it any wonder why we just want to plain fucking destroy these morons.
  28. The Wrong Guy Member

    This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to the author and

    The Pentagon Just Legalized War Crimes and Killing Journalists

    By Claire Bernish, The Anti Media, June 24, 2015

    Just when it seemed the government’s policy language couldn’t get any more paradoxical, self-justifying, and replete with inconsistencies, the Pentagon issued its “Law of War Manual” earlier this month. The manual is meant to dictate legal conduct for service members from all branches during military operations. Though the enormous tome is drier than stale bread, there are plenty of alarming entries — from designating journalists as potential terrorists to allowing the use of internationally banned weapons — which more than warrant a thorough perusal.

    This manual is the first comprehensive change made to Department of Defense’s laws of war policy since 1956 and has been in the making for 25 years. One change in terminology directly targets journalists, stating, “in general, journalists are civilians. However, journalists may be members of the armed forces […] or unprivileged belligerents.” Apparently, reporters have joined the ranks of al-Qaeda in this new “unprivileged belligerent” designation, which replaces the Bush-era term, “unlawful combatants.” What future repercussions this categorization could bring are left to the imagination, even though the cited reasoning — the possibility terrorists might impersonate journalists — seems legitimate. This confounding label led a civilian lawyer to say it was “an odd and provocative thing for them to write.”

    On a purely surface level, a manual of laws governing the details of how a country behaves in conflict intimates that certain conduct — including that which would violate human rights — is simply unacceptable. Although this is technically, ostensibly true of the Department of Defense’s 1,180 page, single-spaced de facto user guide, its contents belie the United States’ standing as the most arrogantly bellicose government on the planet.

    Use of depleted uranium by U.S. forces during the Iraq War and beyond is well-documented and categorically reprehensible — leaving thousands of Iraqi civilians to suffer the consequences well into the future. “What this has generated is, from 2004 up to this day, we are seeing a rate of congenital malformations in the city of Fallujah that has surpassed even that in the wake of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki that nuclear bombs were dropped on at the end of World War II,” admonished Al-Jazeera journalist Dahr Jamail. He wasn’t exaggerating.

    A study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health found cancer rates due to use of weaponized depleted uranium to be 40 times greater than before the U.S. invasion. Worldwide calls to ban such munitions have not yet been answered — though Belgium, all of Latin America, and Costa Rica have all instituted their own proscriptions in the meantime. As countless individuals reported deformities detailing babies born with missing limbs, two heads, no head, and other profoundly disturbing disfigurations, the fact that the Law of War Manual establishes depleted uranium as an acceptable tool of war puts the U.S. in a position to be rightly condemned.

    It is no less than spectacularly ironic that the government touts itself as a champion of human and civil rights while simultaneously stipulating in writing that internationally-prohibited munitions are perfectly justifiable during war — as long as we’re using them, of course. And to make absolutely certain all bases are covered, the precise descriptions of the types of weapons understandably marked “Prohibited,” appear — in name — in the category immediately following: ”Lawful.”

    If that weren’t egregious enough, also listed under the heading of “Lawful” are cluster munitions.

    These internationally-banned bombs, however, are delineated in the manual as having “Specific Rules on Use” — notably, such weapons’ use may reflect U.S. obligations under international law” [emphasis added]. While this is technically apt, cluster bombs have been banned by the 2008 Convention on Cluster Munitions — which was agreed to by 116 countries around the world. The U.S. stands out in joining infamous human rights violator, Saudi Arabia, in its refusal to sign. These insidious munitions leave unexploded ordnance for months, or even decades, after the originating bomb was dropped. Children are often maimed or killed when they unwittingly mistake them for toys.

    The appearance of cluster munitions at all presents a telling paradox since U.S. policy ostensibly only allows for export. Receiving countries must stipulate that the bombs “will only be used against military targets” with minimal harm to innocent civilians. After reports earlier this month that U.S.-supplied cluster bombs had been used to target Yemeni citizens, the DoD announced it would diligently investigate — and also claimed its export of the insidious weapons would cease as of 2018.

    But, if we are to believe this apparent concern holds any truth whatsoever, then why list “cluster munitions” as lawful weapons for U.S. use? Yes, that is a facetiously rhetorical question.

    Depleted uranium and cluster munitions are just two examples of many in the manual that actually generate a plethora of questions rather than provide the definitive answers one might expect from the Pentagon’s title. Also found among the listed “lawful” devices are mines, nuclear weapons, booby-traps, herbicides, non-blinding laser weapons, incendiary devices, and fragmentation weapons — and the weapons sections comprise a mere fraction of the voluminous, 6,169-footnoted, document.

    Such deftly crafted and contrary language in the Law of War Manual would be head-scratchingly comical — were it not for the very shocking consequences for civilians around the world it ultimately justifies.

    Some apologists will predictably point to the manual’s title as reason to declare that the U.S. government has admirable standards it upholds, even in times of war — but, rather fortunately, the number of people who know better grows exponentially every day.

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  29. The Wrong Guy Member

    Report: After Spying Operation in Germany, CIA Outed Suspected Leaker to Retaliate Against Journalists

    By Ryan Devereaux, The Intercept

    In the summer of 2011, the CIA station chief in Berlin asked one of the most powerful intelligence officials in Germany to go on a private walk with him, the German newsmagazine Der Spiegel reports. The American spy had an important message to convey: one of Germany’s own senior officials was leaking information to the press.

    The suspected leaker, Hans Josef Vorbeck, had been in contact with Spiegel, the station chief told the German official, Günter Heiss. Head of Division 6, Heiss is responsible for coordinating Germany’s intelligence services. Vorbeck was his deputy.

    At the time, Vorbeck was responsible for managing German counterterrorism efforts. Following the meet up, Vorbeck was discreetly transferred to a less prestigious post, overseeing historical archives for the BND, Germany’s foreign intelligence service.

    For four years the conversation that led to Vorbeck’s demotion remained secret. It has now become public, thanks largely to a German intelligence inquiry launched in the wake of Edward Snowden’s historic leak of top-secret NSA documents. The walk – and its implications for U.S., German relations – are detailed in today’s report.

    Continued here:
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  30. The Wrong Guy Member

    There's a follow-up here:
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  31. The Wrong Guy Member

    NYT’s James Risen & Abby Martin on Fighting Censorship, Endless War

    Published by Empire Files on July 2, 2016

    Few journalists know the cruelty of government censorship as well as James Risen, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist at the New York Times, targeted for several major stories implicating criminality by the US war machine and its national security state.

    Having just ended a seven-year legal battle, where he bravely faced jail time to protect his inside sources, Risen joins Abby Martin on The Empire Files to talk about his case and the stories he wrote that were such a threat.
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