Skip to main content

How about the WaPo?  Those 2 outlets, after all, initially published the Pentagon Papers in 1971:

The study comprised 3,000 pages of historical analysis and 4,000 pages of original government documents in 47 volumes, and was classified as "Top Secret - Sensitive" ("Sensitive" is not an official security designation; it meant that access to the study should be controlled)
The study, which included cables, presidential memos, and field memos from Vietnam, was not officially declassified until 2011.

As many of us know, Daniel Ellsberg and Anthony Russo copied and then leaked the Papers.   They were both prosecuted under the Espionage Act.  The charges against them were ultimately dismissed b/c of illegal government break-ins and wiretapping that fell under the rubric of the scandal commonly known as "Watergate."

What's fascinating in the present context, however, is that there is no record of any gov't searches or seizures of journalists in this time frame.   The Nixon WH, whose name lives on in infamy for its secrecy, civil liberties violations, and overall heavy-handedness, did go to court in a vain attempt to prevent publication--a major controversy at the time.  It never, however, went after any person (e.g. NYT reporter Neil Sheehan) or entity who ultimately published the Papers.  

It should be recalled that, at the time of the leak in 1971, over 150,000 American troops were still actively involved in a war in Vietnam.  There was also that Cold War thingy w/ the Soviets.  The pursuit of those who published these leaks, however, was apparently never considered by the wonderful folks who gave us the Plumbers even w/ that (undeclared) war going on.

Perhaps that historical context will provide relevant guidance today.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Meteor Blades, Ed in Montana, chrississippi, coral, dalemac, deben, Dump Terry McAuliffe, Gooserock, wytcld, Bob Love, Aspe4, willyr, gjohnsit, TheMomCat, bronte17, TracieLynn, Einsteinia, maxschell, ask, lunacat, cosmic debris, Dburn, taonow, Ignacio Magaloni, kharma, psnyder, ranger995, Lawrence, crackpot, MeToo, dkmich, zerelda, WisVoter, rmx2630, sawgrass727, kbman, Bluesee, marina, ZZZzzz, 3goldens, LakeSuperior, corvo, Simplify, basquebob, YucatanMan, Laurence Lewis, Kevskos, Lepanto, fixxit, eru, marathon, lotlizard, stevemb, Tool, WisePiper, Shotput8, Lisa Lockwood, Balachan, turdraker, peacestpete, CJnyc, kovie, Medium Head Boy, koNko, kck, blueoasis, Blue Wind, triv33, praenomen, MJ via Chicago, gooderservice, JVolvo, NearlyNormal, sceptical observer, blue in NC, lazybum, CA Nana, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, shaharazade, cpresley, One Pissed Off Liberal, Haningchadus14, Jarrayy, Deadicated Marxist, devis1, Dartagnan, EdSF, psychodrew, jds1978, david mizner, mommyof3, newpioneer, Aunt Martha, DeusExMachina, Empower Ink, kimoconnor, poligirl, Involuntary Exile, Ronald England, KJG52, boatjones, petulans, KrazyKitten, Parthenia, priceman, ZhenRen, LaFeminista, Rhysling, J M F, greengemini, ewmorr, maryabein, mkor7, JesseCW, his panic, commonmass, The Jester, The Free Agent, mookins, Lost and Found, sunny skies, Eddie L, gulfgal98, Lady Libertine, albrt, Johnny Q, 4kedtongue, Betty Pinson, orlbucfan, Nada Lemming, slice, allenjo, Teiresias70, smiley7, PhilJD, SouthernLiberalinMD, quill, DeadHead, Williston Barrett, greenbastard, Siri, turn blue, Horace Boothroyd III, HypocrisyWatch, lunachickie, Bisbonian, Leonhard Euler, BobTheHappyDinosaur, TheMeansAreTheEnd, jbob, quince, leeleedee, JosephK74, greenbell, Kombema, OldSoldier99, JohnWKelly, dream weaver

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site