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The other man is Julian Assange, who in 2006 laid out as clear a statement of his intentions as you’ll find. “The more secretive or unjust an organization is, the more leaks induce fear and paranoia in its leadership and planning coterie,” the WikiLeaks founder wrote. That fear will engender more secrecy, he continued, which in turn will make it harder for the institution to act. The Insider Threat Program suggests that Assange was on to something.
So does another development. After the WikiLeaks cables came out, and again after the Snowden revelations, many federal workers found that they couldn’t access Web sites with news reports about the leaks. If that publicly available material found its way to an Army employee’s computer, the Monterey County Herald reported in June, the authorities might respond with “the wipe or destruction of the computer’s hard drive.” The information was still officially classified, you see.
And so the war on leaks degenerates to a government deliberately destroying its property to keep its staffers from catching sight of publicly available information.
Now there’s an enemy within.
This article originally appeared in The Washington Post.