Exposing Hillary So She Won't Get Elected

Hillary Clinton Emails Said to Contain Classified Data

Here’s the story behind the drive by the Inspector General of the State Department and the Intelligence Community Inspector General that the Justice Department open a full investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email account while she held the position of secretary of state.

Government investigators revealed they discovered classified information on the private email account that Hillary used while secretary of state, stating unequivocally that those secrets never should have been stored outside of secure government computer systems.

The inspectors general of the State Department and the nation’s intelligence agencies said the information they found was classified when it was sent and remains so now. Information is considered classified if its disclosure would likely harm national security, and such information can be sent or stored only on computer networks with special safeguards. The inspectors have no revealed which of Clinton’s emails contained classified data, though the State Department has redacted portions of email it has released, and the FBI demanded data in some emails pertaining to the security situation in Libya be withheld.

Clinton has said for months that she kept no classified information on the private server that she set up. Her campaign said Friday that any government secrets found on the server had been classified after the fact.

There are multiple holes in Clinton’s latest set of excuses.

To begin, she has stated there was nothing classified on her server. It appears now that there was. Simple. She violated national security laws, which require cleared individuals, such as Hillary, to protect sensitive information. Violation of the law is a crime. Exposing classified data is a crime; that in fact is what Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden are accused of doing. It does not matter if the info can be proven to have reached the media or an adversary, the crime is the exposure itself, not the results.

A person in Hillary’s position, and certainly with her claimed experience in government, should know what is and is not classified, sensitive or otherwise needs to be protected. In my own 24 years with the State Department, I know that almost everything that reached the secretary’s office needed to be classified, either because of the contents itself, or because it was part of the tiny fraction of information that bubbled up that high. Of all the issues in the world, an adversary knowing what the secretary was personally focused on, or how the data was being presented to her, was valuable in its own right.

Some/much of the information Hillary was dealing with originated within her inner circle, particularly email sent between her and her closest advisors that helped shape her decisions. It is the originating person that is charged inside State with assigning a classification. If Hillary’s staff did not assign a classification, well, then one was not technically included with the data. But that’s a fudge; it is the data itself that matters, with or without a label, and as part of the responsibility for holding a clearance a person is expected to make judgements to protect information. Hillary had to have known how sensitive the information was at times, but apparently preferred no classification marking to allow her this thin veneer of deniability.

There have also been multiple public cases where the government has taken action against individuals because they “should have known unclassified” data “should have been classified” and thus protected. Google up those of TSA’s Robert MacLean, NSA’s Thomas Drake and, sadly, my own. All of us were punished, fired or threatened with jail over the alleged release of unclassified data that the government deemed ex post facto should have been considered classified. This is not speculation, it is precedent.

Criminal? Maybe. Irresponsible? Likely. Not very presidential? Certainly.