Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Reporters and confidential sources...

So I flipped on MSNBC tonight and caught a little bit of "Hardball" with guest host Andrea Mitchell, she had a few journalists on who were discussing the possible jailing of Judith Miller and Matthew Cooper for refusing to reveal their sources. Since the guests were all journalists I was hardly suprised that they all were upset about the possible jailing of their colleagues. I thought Chicken Little was going to make an appearance the way they talked about the end of confidential sources.

Perhaps it is the lawyer in me coming through but I have absolutely no sympathy for these two journalists. This is a criminal investigation of a possible Federal crime, the two journalists are witnesses who have information vital to the investigation. There is no federal protection for journalists and their sources, it's really that simple. These two are impeding a criminal investigation and any other person in the position would be hauled off to jail, the fact that they are journalists is of no legal consequence.

I am not unsympathetic to the value of confidential sources but at the very least this leaker is a coward who jeopardized a covert CIA operative, all of her contacts through her many years at the CIA, and a CIA cover company that was doing intel work in Iran and North Korea. In addition he or she's actions were most likely criminal as well. These two journalists are not covering for some whistle-blower who uncovered corporate or government corruption, they are protecting a criminal.

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