There were the peculiar “personal” ditties to now-disgraced former military and intelligence honcho David Petraeus. Then we found out there ones about Sarah Palin. THEN we found even stranger ones about Osama bin Laden and … circumcision.
Of course, we’re talking about the emails Hillary Clinton sent using her personal email account/server during her time as United States Secretary of State.
As weird/fascinating as the aforementioned digital notes are, they’re truly trivial when compared to the latest dump and the bombshell the Associated Press dropped via the White House and the U.S. State Department late Friday evening.
Basically, nearly two dozen personal emails of Clinton’s were found to hold “closely-guarded government secrets” requiring “one of the highest levels of classification” — and were withheld from the public jettison.
In a lot of ways, it’s the smoking gun Clinton opposers have been pining for ever since the news of a private email server broke back in the summer of 2014 and the Freedom of Information Act request took effect soon thereafter (not to mention it’s come to light just a few days before the Iowa presidential caucuses).
This from the AP:
The Associated Press learned ahead of the release that seven email chains would be withheld in full for containing “top secret” information. The 37 pages include messages a key intelligence official recently said concerned “special access programs” -highly restricted, classified material that could point to confidential sources or clandestine programs like drone strikes.
“The documents are being upgraded at the request of the intelligence community because they contain a category of top secret information,” State Department spokesman John Kirby told the AP, calling the withholding of documents in full “not unusual.” That means they won’t be published online with others being released, even with blacked-out boxes.
Department officials wouldn’t describe the substance of the emails, or say if Clinton sent any herself.
Even if Clinton didn’t write or forward the messages, she still would have been required to report any classification slippages she recognized in emails she received. But without classification markings, that may have been difficult, especially if the information was publicly available.
Clinton’s campaign spokesman Brian Fallon challenges the top secret label on the emails, and called the news “overclassification run amok”.
The State Department also blocked 18 messages from Clinton to President Barack Obama not for classified reasons but “to protect the president’s ability to receive unvarnished advice and counsel”. They’ll be released, eventually, like all presidential records supposedly are (except for the ones … they don’t?)
What’s America going to do with Hillary?
We’ll just leave this right here:
Oh, and this (from October 2015) …
“In a heated exchange, Mrs. Clinton repeated that she had made a mistake in using a private email account, but maintained that she had never sent or received anything marked classified and had sought to be transparent by publicly releasing her emails.”
When the controversy was in its infancy, she said she never transmitted anything classified over the server. She changed her tune though not long after, adding the part about how she never sent anything “marked classified” over the server (noted in The New York Times quote above).