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National Security Desk / Jun. 10, 2016

Clinton's Emails Devastated U.S. Intelligence

Foreign governments probably know the identities of those members of the CIA.

In keeping an unsecured email server in her basement, Hillary Clinton endangered national security in more than one way. Of the 55,000 emails released by the State Department, 47 of them contained information about CIA personnel or information about the agency sensitive enough to mark as classified. Because the State Department had to explain why it redacted information when it publicly released Clinton’s emails, anyone that has the original emails knows who the CIA contacts are. And, for example, when the U.S. government planned a drone strike in Pakistan, the classified information would make it onto Clinton’s server to give her the opportunity to comment. Such topics should have been discussed over a secure network, but using an unsecure email was convenient for Clinton and her diplomats. Remember the fact that Clinton handled secrets in the Special Access Program? Those beyond-Top-Secret operations will probably have to be shut down because Clinton endangered people aiding U.S. intelligence the world over.

“Secretary Clinton has been seeing this kind of thing for a long time,” an ex-military-intelligence operative told National Review. “If she is competent to handle major decisions, if she is the highly capable person she claims to be, she would know what all this material was, without having some label stating it was secret. If, on the other hand, someone could put reports in front of her describing these various things, again and again, without the appropriate labels, and she was not smart enough to recognize that this material was from classified sources, then she isn’t competent to be the president, or a departmental secretary. Or, of course, this is all lies. There are no other options.”

Meanwhile, hackers and foreign governments probably know the identities of those members of the CIA. They know details about the Special Access Programs. They know details about America’s drone strikes. “Nobody is going to die” because of Clinton’s emails, former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright dismissively insisted last week. But if members of the intelligence community died, would the government ever admit that fact? This is why everyone from the lowest analyst to the secretary of state follows protocol — to keep Americans safe. This is why the FBI’s investigation isn’t just a “security review.”

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