Chelsea Manning and Harvard – Let’s Talk About Disgrace

Harvard University on Friday revoked whistleblower Chelsea Manning’s invitation to be a “visiting fellow” following former CIA deputy director and torture proponent Mike Morell’s resignation in protest of the hiring and CIA director Mike Pompeo’s refusal to accept a speaking invitation at the school.

The smug pronouncements from the CIA crowd were stunning in their hypocrisy. Morell, in a letter he released to all major media outlets following his resignation, said, “I cannot be part of an organization — the Kennedy School — that honors a convicted felon and leaker of classified information, Ms. Chelsea Manning, by inviting her to be a Visiting Fellow at the Kennedy School’s Institute of Politics. Ms. Manning was found guilty of 17 serious crimes, including six counts of espionage, for leaking hundreds of thousands of classified documents to Wikileaks, an entity that CIA Director Mike Pompeo says operates like an adversarial foreign intelligence service.”

Harvard Kennedy Succumbs to CIA Pressure, Revokes Chelsea Manning’s Fellowship

The Institute of Politics at the Harvard Kennedy School revoked an invitation for United States military whistleblower Chelsea Manning to serve as a visiting fellow after intense pressure from the CIA.

According to the Harvard Crimson, the school newspaper, “high-ranking current and former CIA officials” convinced the Dean of the Kennedy School of Government to reverse course.

FBI gets Sputnik emails, critics see ‘red line for media’ crossed in Russia probe

A fired White House correspondent gave the FBI a thumb drive of internal communications and sat for a two-hour interview this month related to whether the Sputnik news outlet is illegally spreading propaganda without disclosure under the Foreign Agents Registration Act.

Some press freedom advocates say Americans should be concerned regardless of whether the meeting between journalist Andrew Feinberg, an FBI agent and a Justice Department attorney turns out to be related to special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe into Russia’s role in the 2016 election.

A Good American: a documentary about Bill Binney, an NSA whistleblower who says 9/11 could have been prevented

Bill Binney resigned from the NSA in October 2001, after 30 years with the agency where he was viewed as one of their best analysts: he quit because he believed that Bush-appointed leaders in the Agency had chosen to respond to the challenge of electronic communications by building out illegal, indiscriminate mass-surveillance programs that left the country vulnerable to terrorists while diverting billions to private contractors with political connections.

After his resignation, Binney and his fellow whistleblowers faced retaliation from the NSA, as the agency prevented him from getting work as a private intelligence contractor and eventually staged a guns-drawn dawn raid on his home.

A Leak or a Hack? A Forum on the VIPS Memo

The Nation

A letter from dissenting members of VIPS, a reply from VIPS, and the results of our independent review.

Editor’s note, 9/1/2017: For more than 150 years, The Nation has been committed to fearless, independent journalism. We have a long history of seeking alternative views and taking unpopular stances. We believe it is important to challenge questionable conventional wisdom and to foster debate—not police it. Focusing on unreported or inadequately reported issues of major importance and raising questions that are not being asked have always been a central part of our work.

Senators Try to Force Trump Admin to Declare WikiLeaks a ‘Hostile’ Spy Service

It’s one of a number of ways the Senate Intelligence Committee is trying to box the White House in on Russia.

By Spencer Ackerman – TheDailyBeast.com

If the Senate intelligence committee gets its way, America’s spy agencies will have to release a flood of information about Russian threats to the U.S.—the kind of threats that Donald Trump may not want made public.

Accused NSA leaker’s supporters call on feds to drop charges against her

By Jeremy Redmon | MyAJC.com

Reality Winner’s supporters said they delivered petitions with more than 16,000 signatures to the U.S. Justice Department’s headquarters in Washington Thursday, asking the agency to drop its charges against the accused National Security Agency leaker.

Among those delivering the petitions on “Whistleblower Appreciation Day” were representatives from several groups, including CodePink, Defending Rights & Dissent, RootsAction.org, Whistleblower and Source Protection Program and Stand with Reality, a nonprofit campaign that is supporting Winner’s case through advocacy and fundraising.

Don’t believe the dangerous myths of ‘Drone Warrior’

By Alex Edney-Browne, Lisa Ling | LA Times

Drone pilots have been quitting the U.S. Air Force in record numbers in recent years — faster than new recruits can be selected and trained. They cite a combination of low-class status in the military, overwork and psychological trauma.

But a widely publicized new memoir about America’s covert drone war fails to mention the “outflow increases,” as one internal Air Force memo calls it. “Drone Warrior: An Elite Soldier’s Inside Account of the Hunt for America’s Most Dangerous Enemies” chronicles the nearly 10 years that Brett Velicovich, a former special operations member, spent using drones to help special forces find and track terrorists. Conveniently, it also puts a hard sell on a program whose ranks the military is struggling to keep full.

In Opinion Mostly Rejecting Jeffrey Sterling Appeal, Fourth Circuit Criminalizes Unclassified Tips

by emptywheel

The Fourth Circuit just codified the principle that you can go to prison for four minutes and 11 seconds of phone calls during which you tell a reporter to go find out classified details you know about.

They just released an opinion mostly upholding Jeffrey Sterling’s conviction. The majority, penned by Albert Diaz, overturned one conviction based on whether Sterling handed a letter (about which the court seems to have misunderstood the evidence) to James Risen in Virginia, but that didn’t result in any reduction in sentence. The court not only upheld all other convictions, but did so in ways that will be really horrible for any clearance holders charged with leaks in the Fourth Circuit (the jurisdiction of which covers all the major government spy agencies).

A whistleblower imprisoned, not silenced

By Jeffrey Sterling

Two years of imprisonment have given me ample time to reflect on the circumstances in which I find myself today. I often retrace my steps, carefully recalling each conversation I had and action I took that landed me in this prison. However, in the two years that I have served, my position has never wavered. I know who I am, and I know what my values are. My name is Jeffrey Alexander Sterling, and I am an innocent man who has been wrongfully convicted of espionage after dedicating my life to serving the U.S. government.