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2/2/06 FBI Probes AIPAC Leak of Classified Iran Docs to NYT

The FBI is probing an effort by two former employees of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) to disclose classified information to the New York Times. This appears to have been part of an effort to cultivate Times reporters in order to selectively leak classified Iran WMD documents.

Larry Franklin, a former Iran desk officer at the Pentagon, recently pleaded guilty to trading classified papers with Israeli intelligence officers and employees at AIPAC. Two AIPAC employees accused of working with Franklin are now being tried in federal court in Alexandria, VA.

This prosecution follows the much publicized scandal involving ex-NYT reporter, Judy Miller, as the conduit of false information about Iraq WMD.

The Times is burying this story breaking today at the bottom of its on-line National page.


leveymg’s diary :: ::

In a short article in its on-line edition, the NYT is reporting that Times staff have been questioned by federal investigators in recent days about efforts by AIPAC employees to leak classified documents.

Two NYT reporters were approached by AIPAC employees with classified documents. Larry Franklin, a former Iran desk officer at the Pentagon Office of Special Plans(OSP), was recently convicted of trading secret documents with Israeli intelligence officers and representatives of AIPAC in Washington, DC.

This raises a question about the nature of the documents. Was this the classified material that Franklin himself had salted into Pentagon files at the behest of his handler, the Mossad Chief of Station at the Israeli Embassy in DC?

The Franklin indictment states that the former DoD officer incorporated changes suggested by a foreign intelligence officer into documents on Iran he was preparing for OSP. See, also see Franklin Indictment, pp 23-24, para 6. (”FO3" is Naor Gilon, the former Mossad chief who fled the country after word of the FBI’s investigation into Franklin and AIPAC was first leaked during the summer of 2004.)

Today’s NYT report is extracted below:

2 Times Reporters Queried in Federal Investigation

Published: February 2, 2006

WASHINGTON, Feb. 1 — Federal agents contacted two reporters from The New York Times on Wednesday seeking information about a former Pentagon official and two representatives of a pro-Israel lobbying group who have been at the center of a criminal investigation into the unauthorized disclosure of classified information.

The requests were made to David S. Cloud and Steven R. Weisman, reporters in The Times’s Washington bureau. Mr. Cloud was asked about possible contacts he had in the spring of 2003 with representatives of the lobbying group, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee. At the time, Mr. Cloud was a reporter for The Wall Street Journal.


A government official who has been briefed on the matter said that agents had contacted reporters from several news organizations.

The agents, the official said, are trying to determine whether reporters received national security information intended to influence their reporting on the Middle East.


The requests follow the Jan. 23 sentencing of Lawrence A. Franklin, a former Pentagon analyst and expert on Iran. Mr. Franklin’s sentencing, to a term of more than 12 years after a guilty plea, refocused the case on two former Aipac officials, Steven J. Rosen and Keith Weissman, who are scheduled to go on trial in April. Each has pleaded not guilty.

If this is what it appears to be, here is additional proof of Track Two of the effort by a neocon cabal and Israeli intelligence to plant false WMD data with the intent of driving the United States into an expanding war in the Middle-East.

COPYRIGHT 2006,  Mark G. Levey

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