Monday, April 24, 2006

How to Defend Treason

It is apparently okay to aid the enemy and divulge classified information as long as it is the truth. This is according to Senator John Kerry, several members of Congress, and several members of the news media. “It is wrong. very wrong. to leak classified information. I abhor leaking,” said Kerry, Sunday morning, on the ABC News program This Week, “But if it is the truth, and it uncovers something wrong, then Americans should look at it as mitigating in dealing with the leak.”
God forbid we leak false classified information to mislead the enemy, that is wrong. But if the leak divulges information that may insinuate civil rights violations by the administration or the military, then the leaker should be protected under “whistle blower” legislation. That is what Kerry and the others seem to be saying.
I say bullshit.
First of all, I don’t recall anything in the Constitution that protects foreign nationals who are not dressed in military uniform and who want to destroy the United States. The Constitution and the Bill of Rights apply to the citizens of the United States and the government of the United States.
Secondly, any disclosure of classified information, by a person who is entrusted with that information, which could cause harm to military operations, or soldiers or agents involved in those operations, is a crime no less than High Treason. Treason is the only crime specifically mentioned in the Constitution as being punishable by death.
Thirdly, the role in the U.S. government of determining the constitutionality of a statute or act belongs to the Judicial Branch, not the Legislative Branch. Those Members of Congress who are accusing the military of Constitutional abuse are stepping outside of their roles as legislators.
Mary McCarthy, the CIA official who was fired for allegedly leaking classified information to the press, is neither a whistle blower nor a protector of the Constitution. She allegedly confessed, after failing a polygraph test, to speaking about classified information to reporters on several occasions.
At the 9/11 commission hearings, in 2003, McCarthy testified that she was concerned that the CIA was unable to effectively pass accurate information to those who needed it. Her own alledged leaks were instumental in weakening that ability.
McCarthy deserves a fair trial--I am a strong believer in “innocent until proven guilty.” But, if she is inclined to talk about classified information in public, information for which she had the highest clearance, she is indeed a danger to national security, and, if not imprisoned, should be kept under close surveillance and supervision.
As usual, blogger Pamela, aka "Atlas Shrugs" posted thorough blogosphere coverage on this subject.