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PJMcK's Journal
PJMcK's Journal
September 12, 2023

Regarding classified documents

A friend is visiting with us. She worked for the National Security Agency for her entire career. In her position, she handled countless documents with various classification markings. Without violating her secrecy oaths, here are a few things she said.

The classification of a document most often is not related to the content but rather the methodology. Most content has a relatively short life-span because circumstance change so quickly. A country’s leadership may change or military maneuvers may start or end. The point is that the issues in a document might no longer be relevant.

(As an example, consider the classified documents found in President Biden’s possession. News reports suggest that those contained directions for then-VP Biden’s caravan for his son’s funeral. The funeral is over but the Secret Service methods detailed in the document could provide an enemy with information to attack a government official.)

The manner in which the document’s information was obtained, however, must remain secret because it is probably a continuing source which could provide current and future information. These sources could be human assets, technological systems or other means all of which need to be protected. This is the reason a document would remain classified: Even though the circumstances of the subject matter may have changed, the way its data was obtained will be detailed in the document.

This is the reason that Trump’s theft of documents is so serious. Lives and sources could be compromised resulting in the loss of intelligence information leaving our leaders blind to changing circumstances.

Additionally, our friend pointed out that our intelligence agencies are not haphazard with documents. Almost without question, the authorities know what documents Trump took. Like an old fashioned library card, the agencies know who has various documents. It’s how they knew to try to retrieve them and that Trump hadn’t returned all of them. She also suggested that in her personal opinion, the agencies know what is still missing and there are reasons we aren’t hearing about them.

As I wrote, there was nothing our friend said that was privileged and her comments were meant in a general manner. Still, they provide a fascinating insight.

When I asked her if she thought Trump was going to lose this case, she smiled tightly and said that if she had done the same as Trump, she could have been shot but she would definitely be jailed in solitary confinement.

Profile Information

Name: Paul McKibbins
Gender: Male
Hometown: New York City
Home country: USA
Current location: Catskill Mountains
Member since: Mon Jun 5, 2006, 04:16 PM
Number of posts: 21,201

About PJMcK

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