U.S. President Barack Obama holds a news conference at the Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House July 15, 2011 in Washington, DC (AFP Photo / Getty Images)
With alleged whistleblower Thomas Drake on trial for leaking classified info to the media, why is the Obama administration cracking down on disclosing the truth when the commander in chief has long lauded running a transparent presidency?
David K Colapinto is the general counsel for the National Whistleblowers Center and he tells RT that President Obama is trying to send a message to other employees within the intelligence community, and that’s “don’t you dare do the same thing.”
Drake is facing sentencing after the former senior official with the National Security Agency was accused of giving out top-secret documents. His lawyers are asking for one year’s probation after his felony charges have been downgraded to a misdemeanor.
Even if the sentence isn’t going to be as harsh as once thought, Colapinto said it will still serve as a warning to others that might try to follow in Drake’s footsteps.
“It obviously has as chilling effect on other employees,” said Colapinto, who remarked that no one wants to see their current or former colleagues prosecuted just for exposing the truth.
Given Obama’s alleged insistence on a transparent administration, Colapinto calls this sentencing “a big surprise,” and that the president has broken a huge promise to America.
Colapinto added that a crackdown is taking place, and the government is going to continue to try to squash those that attempt to expose their “hairbrained schemes.”
“There’s a lot of invasion of public privacy that is still going on,” said Colapinto. “There is infringement of civil liberties. I think that if the American people knew the true scope of what was really going on there would be calls for changes.”