Powerline recently posted an email from Lieutenant Cotton, an infantry officer in Iraq, concerning the New York Times compromise of the security classified program to monitor and track terrorist international financial activities. In his email Lt. Cotton, a Harvard Law School graduate with experience working in Washington, D.C. law firms, makes several points that bear repeating: “(T)he program was legal, briefed to Congress, supported in the government and financial industry, and very successful.”
Lt. Cotton then notes that the disclosure by the NY Times increases the danger he and his men face.
Lt. Cotton concludes that he knows the relevant espionage laws, that the NY Times has clearly violated them, and that the United States Justice Department has a duty to prosecute the NY Times to the fullest extent of the law.
For a different perspective on the security compromise led by the New York Times, a recent poll of Americans’ attitudes shows a high level of agreement with Lt. Cotton’s email.
Sixty-six percent of the American people think that “news organizations that report and publish information about national security secrets that may make it easier for terrorist to operate should face criminal charges.” Even 55% of Democrats thought criminal charges should be brought.
“By publishing the story, do you think the New York Times did more to help the American public or more to help terrorist groups like Al Qaeda?” Sixty percent said more to help terrorist groups, and even Democrats were split 42%-42%.
The New York Times is still standing behind their unrelenting sabotage of President Bush and the Iraq War. “This is something the American people need to know,” is followed by “The American people already know about this, so what’s the big deal?” The Times is having its cake and eating it too. “We are providing the American public vital information about something they already know everything about.” (The above NY Times quotes were made up by me, but they catch the essence of the Times’ pronouncements better and clearer than anything the Times has said.)
The Times further finds that the terrorists, like the American people, already know about the program so what use is it?” but at the same time admit that the program has had some notable successes, like the capture of Hambali, the Bali Bombing mastermind. So the Times says the program was successful, but the terrorists, like the American public, already know all about it. I wonder if the terrorists, like the American public, didn’t pay enough attention when this first came out, and didn’t understand all they knew?
Therefore, it was a Times imperative to make sure they got the message. “Hey, you Jihadi dummies, the financial tracking program really works, and here are all the details.'
If a few more of you idiots get caught, President Bush and the war against terrorism are going to start to look pretty good, and that’s the last thing we at the Times and you out there in Jihadi Country want, capiche?” (More truthful made-up Times quotes. Don’t you wish The Times could express themselves as clearly as I do for them?)
In conclusion, the American military, the American public, and I agree that the New York Times and its fellow-travelers violated laws to compromise an effective anti-terrorism program. The Times in their defense say that they did it for no good reason since everyone already knew about it, and the only reason President Bush wants to keep it secret is because it works. The Times thinks that this whole thing is typical of President Bush and his administration, taking advantage of terrorists who are too dumb to protect themselves. The Times protests such unfairness, and will do everything in their power to stop it before it helps Republicans get re-elected.
If you are tired of reading about the New York Times breaking espionage laws, here is a great video to watch: Changing Times, how the New York Times sells out New York to the terrorists.