Will US General Find Immunity from Obama's Selective Wrath for Leakers?

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Could the latest target of President Obama’s aggressive war against leakers of government secrets be a recent, and very high-level, member of the country’s military power structure?

Reporting by NBC News indicates that (Ret.) US Marine Gen. James Cartwright, who served as vice chairman on Obama’s Joint Chiefs of Staff, has been named as the focus of Justice Department investigation ordered by the White House to determine which officials may have been the source for revealing details about a US cyber-attack against Iran in 2010.

According to NBC,

Cartwright has refused to comment and DOJ officials have yet to indicate whether or not the retired four-star general could possibly be charged.

Detailing the controversy surrounding the Stuxnet program, the Guardian reports:


But now—at least according to the National Journal’s Brian Fung—going after Cartwright for possibly leaking details about the program may be a strategic error by Obama that has his habit of attacking leakers coming back to “bite” him. Fung writes:

News about the Justice Department’s investigation against Cartwright comes as the Obama faces heightened criticism for both how the nation’s security agencies conduct themselves relative to cyber-surveillance domesticall and abroad.

As many have pointed out, the Obama administration has proven itself very adept at taking advantage of anonymous leaks of classified information that reflect positively on the White House, but have been by far the most aggressive prosecutors when it comes to going after those who leak information unfavorable to government policies.

And, as historian and foreign policy expert Juan Cole writes on Friday, the news should also highlight some of the damning ways in which government spy programs intersect with alleged assaults on civil liberties. Revelations in recent months have drawn outrage and concern over how the US government not only goes after whistleblowers, but also about how it has used its surveillance capabilities to target journalists and other American civilians:


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