Caveat: James Risen, the NYT reporter, is a CIA "Mockingbird" with little credibility, but does on occasion file a real report on the intelligence community to maintain his cover. However, he has never, in the span of his career, revealed as much, say, as this blog on a dialy basis. - AC
By Ryan Singel
April 14, 2008
Federal investigators are using phone records to figure out which federal officials talked with New York Times reporters about the government's secret wiretapping of Americans without court orders.
The feds are using phone records to find out who told Times reporter James Risen about warrantless eavesdropping on American citizens.
In the leak investigation, Justice Department officials are using phone records in an Arlington, Va. federal grand jury proceeding to ferret out James Risen's sources, according to the New York Times.
One presumes the government is using subpoenas or National Security Letters to get Risen or his suspected sources' phone records, then hauling former government officials in front of the grand jury.
But given that this Administration operates on the belief that the Fourth Amendment does not apply during wartime, that the Justice Department is not pursuing criminal charges against officials involved in wiretapping Americans without court approval and that the Administration claims to have King-like powers in the Time of Terror, the presumption that legal process was involved might be quaint.
Risen, the author of State of War: The Secret History of the CIA and the Bush Administration, was subpoenaed by the Justice Department in 2006, but is fighting the subpoena.