New revelations in the Hillary Clinton e-mail scandal are damning to her claims that she "never sent or received any e-mail that was deemed classified, that was marked classified." A new intelligence review by the CIA confirms that at least two e-mails have already been found that did contain information that was highly classified.
As Hillary's computer tech is being offered immunity for his testimony, she is continuing to deny everything without really saying anything specific. Instead of giving forthright answers, she has continued to duck and dodge by attempting to play the whole thing off as a simple matter of conflicting opinions.
Her old friends at State are holding the same position as their former boss, but probably for their own reasons. As the investigation continues to reveal employment irregularities and conflicts of interest at the State Department, it looks as if Hillary's former employees have ample reason to want to keep the truth from seeing the light of day. It creates an interesting situation where the Hillary 2016 campaign and some at the State Department appear to be conspiring to keep their stories straight and look out for one another.
A good example of this is the way both the Clinton campaign and the State Department have attempted to obfuscate the fact that despite her — and their — denials, Hillary did send classified e-mails on her private, unsecured e-mail server. When the intelligence community inspector general first reported that at least one e-mail on Hillary's private server was —ans still is — considered classified, both Hillary's campaign and the State Department claimed it was a matter of opinion.
As The New American reported previously:
The beleaguered Mrs. Clinton and the State Department both claim that they did not consider the intelligence in the e-mail to be classified at the time it was sent. They consider the disagreement over the classification of the intelligence "a difference of opinion." Mrs. Clinton told reporters that the disagreement and misunderstanding is between the agencies involved and has "nothing to do with" her.
Unfortunately for Hillary and the State Department, they don't get to decide whether the information in that — or any other — correspondence is classified. There is the matter of Executive Order 13526, signed by President Obama in 2009, which says that only the agency that classified the material can remove that classification. That means that — her opinion to the contrary duly noted — Hillary is either mistaken or dishonest when she claims that she "never sent or received any e-mail that was deemed classified, that was marked classified."
Now that another review of the e-mail in question has confirmed that it and another e-mail were "Top Secret," how have Hillary and the State Department responded? The New York Times reports that Nick Merrill, a campaign spokesman, said, "Our hope remains that these releases [of the e-mails on the server] continue without being hampered by bureaucratic infighting among the intelligence community, and that the releases continue to be as inclusive and transparent as possible," seeming to imply that this is all somehow politically motivated.
John Kirby, the State Department spokesman, went even further in his statement:
Classification is rarely a black and white question, and it is common for the State Department to engage internally and with our interagency partners to arrive at the appropriate decision. Very often both the State Department and the intelligence community acquire information on the same matter through separate channels. Thus, there can be two or more separate reports and not all of them based on classified means. At this time, any conclusion about the classification of the documents in question would be premature.
The major e-mail in question deals with North Korea's nuclear weapons program and contains information gathered via satellite and spy-plane photography. Such intelligence is treated extremely seriously and violations of those laws carry severe penalties. Even 18 US Code 793, which is part of the Espionage Act, allows conviction and up to 10 years imprisonment for anyone who "through gross negligence permits" classified intelligence "to be removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone" without proper clearance.
Photo of Hillary Clinton: AP Images