Administration Careful in Talking about Classified Ops
A page 3 story in today’s WaPo reports that the Bush Administration has answered questions about the covert intelligence operation reveleaded in the press months ago in such a way as to avoid hinting that there was a second, related covert operation ongoing.
[A]dministration officials have been punctilious in discussing the NSA program over the past five months, parsing their words with care and limiting comments to the portion of the program that had been confirmed by the president in December.
In doing so, the administration rarely offered any hint that a much broader operation, involving millions of domestic calls, was underway. Even yesterday — after days of congressional furor and extensive media reports — administration officials declined to confirm or deny the existence of the telephone-call program, in part because of court challenges that the government is attempting to derail.
Would we expect that any administration would, upon the illegal leak to the press about a highly sensitive intelligence program, decide it was time to reveal all of our classified ops in order to provide full disclosure? Regardless of one’s position on the utility or even legality of these programs, surely keeping them secret on operational grounds is reasonable.