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Tag: State of War

14 Pulitzer Prize Winners Ask Justice Department Not to Jail Reporter

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

More than a dozen Pulitzer Prize winners urged the Justice Department on Monday to stop trying to force New York Times reporter and author James Risen to identify a confidential source, the US News reports.

Risen has said he’d go to jail before testifying at the trial of former CIA employee Jeffrey Sterling, who is accused of providing a tip for Risen’s book, “State of War: The Secret History of the CIA and the Bush Administration.”

Prosecutors allege Risen divulged a CIA scheme to provide flawed nuclear weapons designs to Iran.

Fourteen Pulitzer Prize winners issued a statement in support of Risen.

“Enough is enough,” said three-time Pulitzer Prize winner David Barstow of The New York Times. “The relentless and by all appearances vindictive effort by two administrations to force Jim Risen into betraying his sources has already done substantial and lasting damage to journalism in the United States. I’ve felt the chill firsthand. Trusted sources in Washington are scared to talk by telephone, or by email, or even to meet for coffee, regardless of whether the subject touches on national security or not.”

New York Times Reporter, Author Faces Jail Time If He Refuses to Testify About Book Leak

Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A New York Times reporter may face jail time if he refuses to testify about who leaked information to him for a book he wrote on the botched CIA operation in Iran.

The New York Times reports that James Risen, author of “State of War,” has steadfastly refused to testify, but he has run out of legal challenges, leading up to “the most serious confrontation between the government and the press in recent history.”

Reporter James Risen

Risen faces the possibility of prison time if he refuses to testify.

The government’s handling of the case will set a precedent, experts said.

“If the government proceeds and pursues the subpoena, especially if Mr. Risen goes to jail or is fined at some intolerable level, it will deal a withering blow to reporting that runs against the government’s wishes,” said Steven Aftergood, who studies government secrecy for the nonprofit Federation of American Scientists.

New York Times journalist Judith Miller was jailed for 85 days for refusing to testify about a CIA leak in 2005, the last time a reporter was imprisoned for not divulging information.