New York Times reporter James Risen has been subpoenaed
by the Department of Justice, which is
demanding that Risen reveal his source for information in his 2006 book,
State of War. The DoJ wants to know how Risen, whose book discusses the
Bush administration's relationship with the CIA, found out about a
secret program to disrupt the Iranian nuclear program. Why is the Obama
administration going after the reporter for something that happened
during the Bush presidency?
- Obama Follows Bush's Lead
Talking Points Memo's Justin Elliott calls this
"Following in the footsteps of the Bush Administration. ... Risen was
about the matter during the Bush Administration, in February 2008. ...
This is the second public example of the Obama DOJ aggressively pursuing
leak cases. Earlier this month, a former National Security Agency
official was charged
with crimes in connection with alleged leaks to then-Baltimore Sun
reporter Siobhan Gorman."
- Bush Was Right, So Is Obama The
Weekly Standard's Gabriel Schoenfeld says Bush's
original subpoena "was widely cited as just another instance in which
the supposedly ultra-secretive Bush administration was waging war on the
press." That Obama has followed suit now proves "that the revelation of
secrets, particularly those involving ongoing classified intelligence
programs, can place us all at risk?"
- Contrast With Obama's
Inaction on Bush's Wiretapping Reason's Jesse Walker quotes an old
post by Julian Sanchez: "The contrast
[with] the non-reaction to other forms of lawbreaking makes the standard
in effect for Bush-era misdeeds clear: If you illegally gathered
information on members of the public, Obama's DOJ would rather let
sleeping dogs lie. If you illegally tried to get information to
the public, you'd better lawyer up."
- Contract With Obama
Inaction on CIA Torture Liberal blogger John Cole drips with
sarcasm. "It's just a damned shame Risen didn't torture anyone. I'm
serious- can't Risen just claim he tortured someone to get the
information, but destroyed the tapes?" Cole asks, referencing CIA
defenses about its torture program. "Then mumble something about a few
bad apples. Doesn't that get you a pass under the current rules?"
He Go to Jail? Gawker's Hamilton Nolan predicts,
"James Risen could be the next Judy Miller. Not Judy Miller in the sense
of being a government patsy; Judy Miller in the sense of sitting in
jail in order to protect sources." New York Times reporter Judy Miller
took prison time in 2005 rather than reveal her sources under a similar
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