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Tag: Daniel Ellsberg

CIA Misled FBI About Smear Campaign of Pentagon Papers Leak

ppheadlineBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

When the CIA tried to damage the reputation of Daniel Ellsberg, the man who leaked secret Vietnam documents to the press, the agency’s director at the time offered misleading information to the FBI.

The revelations came to light after the legal watchdog Judicial Watch obtained a 155-page CIA inspector general’s report, USA Today reports. 

The June 1972 memo from CIA Director Richard Helms to his deputy asked the FBI to “desist from expanding this investigation into other areas which may well, eventually, run afoul of our operations.”

According to the report, the CIA was very concerned about the Pentagon Papers, which the New York Times would publish.

“The collective totality of Agency material in the Pentagon Papers would tell any sophisticated or professional outsider a very great deal about how the Agency goes about doing its business,” the report said. “This would constitute a major windfall for any hostile intelligence service and greatly facilitate future denigration operations, including the preparation of fabricated documents, forgeries or other types of tailored disinformation.

“It is against this backdrop that the Administration’s concern and efforts against Ellsberg must be viewed,” the report continued. “Not only did they feel that an example must be made of Ellsberg to forestall future leaks, but also they felt that if he were in touch with the Soviets, as had been rumored, it was of vital importance to identify his contacts. The concern was legitimate, the means to achieve their ends was, to say the least, questionable.”

Opinion: Why NSA Leaker Edward Snowden Doesn’t Deserve Celemency

Fred Kaplan
Slate

I regard Daniel Ellsberg as an American patriot. I was one of the first columnists to write that Director of National Intelligence James Clapper should be fired for lying to Congress. On June 7, two days after the first news stories based on Edward Snowden’s leaks, I wrote a column airing (and endorsing) the concerns of Brian Jenkins, a leading counterterrorism expert, that the government’s massive surveillance program had created “the foundation of a very oppressive state.”

And yet I firmly disagree with the New York Times’ Jan. 1 editorial (“Edward Snowden, Whistle-Blower”), calling on President Obama to grant Snowden “some form of clemency” for the “great service” he has done for his country.

It is true that Snowden’s revelations about the National Security Agency’s surveillance of American citizens—far vaster than any outsider had suspected, in some cases vaster than the agency’s overseers on the secret FISA court had permitted—have triggered a valuable debate,leading possibly to much-needed reforms.

If that were all that Snowden had done, if his stolen trove of beyond-top-secret documents had dealt only with the NSA’s domestic surveillance, then some form of leniency might be worth discussing.

But Snowden did much more than that.

To read more click here.

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Slice of History: Nixon Talks to Atty. Gen. Mitchell About Pentagon Papers and Hoover