FBI looks into possible White House leaks

The FBI has launched an investigation into apparent leaks of classified information involving a cyberwarfare program against Iran, a U.S. official said Wednesday. FBI spokesman Paul Bresson had no comment on the reported investigation.

Sen. Saxby Chambliss, ranking Republican on the Senate Intelligence Committee, said he was informed that an FBI inquiry was under way. The senator from Georgia and other leaders of the House and Senate Intelligence Committees issued a joint statement Tuesday deploring the apparent leaks.

“In recent weeks, we have become increasingly concerned at the continued leaks regarding sensitive intelligence programs and activities, including specific details of sources and methods,” said Chambliss; Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein, D-California; Chairman Mike Rogers, R-Michigan; and Ranking Member C.A. “Dutch” Ruppersberger, D-Maryland, in the statement.

“These disclosures have seriously interfered with ongoing intelligence programs and have put at jeopardy our intelligence capability to act in the future. Each disclosure puts American lives at risk, makes it more difficult to recruit assets, strains the trust of our partners and threatens imminent and irreparable damage to our national security in the face of urgent and rapidly adapting threats worldwide.”

The House and Senate Intelligence Committee leaders said they intended “to review potential legislation to strengthen authorities and procedures with respect to access to classified information and disclosure of it, as well as to ensure that criminal and administrative measures are taken each time sensitive information is improperly disclosed.”

“We also intend to press for the executive branch to take tangible and demonstrable steps to detect and deter intelligence leaks, and to fully, fairly, and impartially investigate the disclosures that have already taken place.” The White House pushed back against suggestions it could be leaking classified information for political purposes.

“This administration takes all appropriate and necessary steps to prevent leaks of classified information or sensitive information that could risk ongoing counterterrorism or intelligence operations,” spokesman Jay Carney said Wednesday aboard Air Force One as the president traveled to campaign events on the West Coast.
“Any suggestion that this administration has authorized intentional leaks of classified information for political gain is grossly irresponsible.”

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