Friday, 19 May 2017 08:19

Loose Lips Sink Ships

Written by  Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll

Loose Lips Sink Ships

Lt. Gov. Jennifer CarrollThe 2016 election brought about a public civic education which is lacking in primary education in America. The average person was hearing first hand terms like classified markings, security clearance such as: top secret and special access programs, and how these terms were directly related to national security.

Since the election, discussions about securing classified documents, transferring classified information and “need-to-know” are household topics. 

The media have become obsessed with carelessly disclosing any classified information leaked to them without discernment. 

When the New York Times recently chose to put ratings, number of clicks and sensationalism above the national security of this country, that crossed the line of reckless journalism. President Trump, in a private meeting at the White House, discussed critical information on fighting ISIS with Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov. The New York Times blamed the President for releasing classified information to the Russians stating, that his disclosure put foreign intel forces in jeopardy. But in fact, it was the New York Times in releasing this classified information obtained from unnamed sources have put foreign intel forces in jeopardy. There was a day when the media used discretion, discernment and reported information that was factual and relevant to the public interest, but not to the destruction of the nation. 

Former Democrat Congressman Dennis Kucinich said, "We need to protect our nation, it's under attack." What's sad is that the country is under attack from within. These reckless journalists who are on a mission to destroy President Donald Trump are doing it at the expense of the democracy of this country. If America falls, where on earth can we go to have the level of freedom and liberties that's taken for granted? Where will these same journalists go to hide behind and be protected by the First Amendment -freedom of the press?  

As a young enlisted jet mechanic in the Navy I was privileged to receive my first security clearance and held a Top Secret Clearance until I retired from the military. Anyone bestowed this privilege knew the rules on handling or transferring classified information. To date, everyone who has access to classified documents are instructed and trained on proper security handling, which includes sharing of or speaking about classified materials. My husband, a government contractor, holds a security clearance and he is very mindful of his responsibility to never speak of the classified information he works with. This is the level of care and professionalism government leakers in Washington D.C. should follow. 

In the Navy we had a phrase, "loose lips sink ships," and if the loose lips of government leakers keep passing classified information to the press we will have some sinking ships and the big sinking ship could be our country.

Leakers in government with diarrhea of the mouth who illegally share sensitive classified information to the press should consider that not only are they putting our nation’s security at risk they are also impacting lives of working families.  When sensitive national security information is leaked to people who do not have a "need-to-know," this creates a huge work load problem for the intelligence agencies. Mothers and fathers must now work over time and on weekends taking time away from their families to put out these fires. Troop movements may be impaired, new policies and procedures must be developed and implemented, all of this taking lots of time and money to implement. The cost to tax payers is increased for personnel and running government building operations beyond normal working hours.

If the press is so bend on destroying President Trump at the expense of destroying this country, then they should get out of the news business and run for office and be that change they seek.

 

Jennifer Carroll 

Former Lieutenant Governor 

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