New York Times Executive Editor Jill Abramson says that President Obama’s White House is the “most secretive White House” that she’s covered during her long tenure as a political journalist.
By DYLAN BYERS |1/23/14 11:20 AM
“I would say it is the most secretive White House that I have ever been involved in covering, and that includes — I spent 22 years of my career in Washington and covered presidents from President Reagan on up through now, and I was Washington bureau chief of the Times during George W. Bush’s first term,” Abramson told Al Jazeera America in an interview that will air on Sunday.
“I dealt directly with the Bush White House when they had concerns that stories we were about to run put the national security under threat. But, you know, they were not pursuing criminal leak investigations,” she continued. “The Obama administration has had seven criminal leak investigations. That is more than twice the number of any previous administration in our history. It’s on a scale never seen before. This is the most secretive White House that, at least as a journalist, I have ever dealt with.”
The Times has been intimately involved with the government’s crackdown on leaks, both before and during the Obama administration. James Risen, a Times reporter, is currently fighting to avoid having to testify against a former CIA official accused of being his source. According to Robert Gates’s new memoir, Obama hadn’t been in office more than a month before saying he wanted a criminal investigation into disclosures on Iran policy that had been published the Times.
In the wake of the revelations about the Justice Department’s monitoring of Fox News reporter James Rosen, whom the DOJ labeled a “co-conspirator,” the Times editorial board wrote that “the Obama administration has moved beyond protecting government secrets to threatening fundamental freedoms of the press to gather news.”
Asked by Al Jazeera America’s John Seigenthaler whether the crackdown on leaks comes directly from the president, Abramson said, “I would think that it would have to. I don’t know that, but certainly enough attention has been focused on this issue that, if he departed from the policies of his government, I think we’d know that at this point.”
The full interview, which airs Sunday at 7 p.m. ET, is available here.
Things become secretive when they will NOT bear scrutiny…and for no other reason. Any administration that attempts to hide it’s activities and restrict the public’s knowledge of same activities isn’t only secretive, it’s suppressive. Something one would expect from SA dictators who wear those kooky uniforms full of medals.
Modern dictators usually use force or fraud to gain power and then keep it through intimidation, terror, suppression of civil liberties, and control of the mass media. [MC->Obama hits a 4 out of 6!]
The NY Times has been covering Obama’ butt for the past 5 yrs, what’sup now, one might wonder. Jill’ going to get THE CALL sooooon, and if she doesn’t grovel back saying her comments were misconstrued by the evil right wing, she will get some of that transparent attention from Obama’s goons aka IRS Audits for a start.