David Sanger of the NY Times appeared on the Newshour this evening to explain his actions in exposing many details of "Operation Olympic Games," the US/Israeli cyberattack on the Iranian enrichment plant at Natanz in Iran.
His defense of his actions in this matter consisted of two things:
- No real damage was done to US security interests because the Iranians and all the world deduced the existence of this cyberattack from the fact of the "escape" of the code into the internet. Therefore, he was merely provifding a public service by making an explanation of the project public so that it could be "debated" as policy.
- Implicit in this defense is the concept that mere classification of documents or information by the government is not, in itself, a bar to such revelation of government secrets. In his view, the public right to know comes first.
Under the "Sanger Doctrine" there should be many fewer prosecutions for unauthorised disclosure. pl