Sunday, July 17, 2005

Top Secret Politics

I was struck by the following passage from this week's edition of Newsweek's coverage of Rovegate (link courtesy AMERICABlog):

Missions accomplished. Except for a few little details. Under a 1982 law, it's a felony to intentionally disclose the name of a "covered" agent with the intent to harm national security. Under another, older statute, it could also be a felony to willfully disclose information from a classified document—which the State Department memo and, apparently, the Condi briefing book were. There is no indication that Rove saw the briefing book (Rumsfeld didn't get one) or that anyone disclosed classified information. But no one in the administration seems to have noticed the irony—or the legal danger—in assembling a top secret briefing book as guidance for the Sunday talk shows (my emphasis - Chris). Exactly what papers with what classifications were floating around on Air Force One? Who, if anyone, was dipping into them for info about the Wilson trip?

The bolded sentence says it all. The Bushies see nothing odd about preparing confidential/top secret briefing books, not for national security reasons, but for political purposes.

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