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A Craven Act


Yesterday, we talked about the White House’s outrageous decision to leak that the underwear bomber was now cooperating with the FBI. We said that these coordinated leaks would damage national security by, among other things, telling the underwear bomber’s fellow terrorists that he had flipped on them and it was time to go to ground.

The White House dismissed this criticism, saying that revealing the underwear bomber’s cooperation would not harm national security. Well, apparently FBI director Robert Mueller didn’t get the memo. According to this letter from Senator Bond on the Senate Intelligence Committee, Director Mueller on Monday “personally stressed [to Senator Bond] that keeping the fact of his cooperation quiet was vital to preventing future attacks against the United States.”

Less than 24 hours later, the White House was deliberately leaking this very information to the press. What changed in those 24 hours? Nothing except the White House decided the political benefits of leaking outweighed the national security costs.

It is hard to imagine a more craven act than this one. The question is whether anyone will be investigated for this leak. Unlikely.

— Dana M. Perino is former press secretary to Pres. George W. Bush. Bill Burck is a former federal prosecutor and deputy counsel to President Bush.