Where do the media get off exposing a spy?

At first blush, the Robert Levinson affair seems like the epitome of reckless reporting on national security: The news media flat out blew a missing spy’s cover. Levinson, a former FBI agent who vanished in March 2007 on the Iranian island of Kish, hadn’t been working as a private investigator, as the U.S. government had […]

Unlike media, public worries more about spying Snowden exposed than secrets he leaked

It’s unwise to put too much weight on polls, but a recent survey on the Edward Snowden affair suggests better judgment among the general public than our usual opinion leaders have been able to muster. The national survey of U.S. voters by Quinnipiac University found that by a huge margin—55 to 34 percent—respondents considered Snowden, […]

U.S. is uniquely harsh in its panic over government secrets

By the standards of other countries, the U.S. approach to official secrecy is ferocious. For leaking hugely newsworthy information to the press, ex-intelligence contractor Edward Snowden, who’s beseeching a score of countries for asylum, and Bradley Manning, the U.S. soldier being tried by a military court in Maryland, face charges of espionage. They could go […]

Assange and Wikileaks: Time to Ask the Impertinent Questions

I’m badly out of step with my media brethren, since I find the fate of Wikileaks and its besieged founder, Julian Assange, a truly compelling story. Other media don’t agree. The pressure on Assange, who has taken sanctuary in the Ecuadorean embassy in London, is to them fringe stuff, a quirky faceoff involving a spectral, […]