Leaker or Whistleblower?
On Thursday, the FBI arrested National Guard Airman, Jack Douglas Teixeira, and charged him with leaking national security secrets online, and is facing 10 years in prison. It is amazing the speed at which the FBI was able to identify and arrest this leaker. Compare that to the felonious leak of the draft of the Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision which would overturn Roe v Wade. Almost a year later, no law enforcement official has been able to identify who the leaker was which is puzzling considering it could only be one of about a dozen people – one of the three liberal Justices on the Court or one of their clerks. Yet, our intelligence agencies are still unable to identify the person who committed that felony which led to an assassination attempt on conservative Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
The recently leaked classified documents showed that much of what our current administration has been telling us about the war in Ukraine is a lie. We have been told that the United Sates is only supporting Ukraine’s war efforts with money and weaponry, and the Ukraine military is beating back the untrained, unprepared Russian army. The leaked documents show that nothing could be further from the truth. The United States has, in fact, deployed troops on the ground to fight the Russians in Ukraine which we have been told again and again was not happening and is also a violation of the 1973 War Powers Act – an impeachable offense. The documents clearly show that we are in a proxy war with nuclear armed Russia, and slowly creeping toward a nuclear confrontation. We also learned that Ukraine is not winning the war; they are being beaten badly. For every one Russian killed, seven Ukrainian’s lose their lives. It is an unsustainable disaster for Ukraine.
Back in the 1980’s, we covertly shipped Stingers Anti-Aircraft Missiles into Afghanistan to fight the Russian invasion there, and the Afghans expelled the Russians in 18 months. Over the last 15 months, we have sent Ukraine over $100 billion of the most advanced weaponry in the world, and they are getting slaughtered. The only way Russia loses the war in Ukraine is if the United States deploys its full ground forces there. Does anyone want that to happen? Does anybody want another Vietnam? We’re going to wake up five years from now, after a million Ukrainians and thousands of American soldiers have been killed, and wonder how we allowed this level of devastation to take place.
One President’s leaker is another President’s whistleblower. I’m trying to understand the difference between the leak of classified documents about our war in Ukraine by low level national guard airmen, Jack Teixeira, and the leak of the Pentagon Papers by a United States war analyst, Daniel Ellsberg in 1971. The war in Ukraine has many similarities to the war in Vietnam. South Vietnam’s sovereign border was breached by the North Vietnam army in its attempt to take over the Democratic South Vietnam and turn it into a communist state. Ukraine’s sovereign border was breached by the Russia army in its attempt to take over the “Democratic” country of Ukraine and put it under control of its totalitarian state.
The Pentagon Papers revealed that the United States government had secretly enlarged the scope of the Vietnam War with coastal raids on North Vietnam and attacks in Cambodia – none of which were disclosed to the media nor approved by Congress. The recently released classified documents by Airman Teixeira show that the United States has enlarged its support for the Ukrainian war effort by putting American boots on the ground which has not been disclosed to the media nor approved by Congress. The Pentagon Papers also showed that the motivation for the Vietnam war was not protecting the democracy of South Vietnam as the American public had been told by our leaders; it was a proxy war with Communist China. The recently leaked classified documents show that the motivation for the Ukraine war is not protecting the democracy of Ukraine as the American public have been told; it is a proxy war with Russia.
The Pentagon Papers exposed the lies the American people were told about Vietnam. Since Kennedy was dead, and Johnson was no longer President, the brunt of the fallout from the Pentagon Papers would fall squarely on the shoulders of President Richard Nixon – a Republican, which is exactly what the media wanted. Their primary motivation to print the Pentagon Papers was not necessarily to expose the lies our government had been telling the American people about Vietnam for the previous 10 years, it was to hurt Richard Nixon and his reelection campaign. Just as right now, the media is going after this whistleblower, because they are trying to protect Joe Biden’s reelection campaign. The media should be just as angry at our government’s lies about the Ukraine war as they were about its lies regarding the Vietnam war, but they are not because Democrat Presidents are allowed to lie, and Republican ones are not. That is why Daniel Ellsberg was portrayed as a hero, and Jack Teixeira is labelled the villain.
Interesting, the Washington Post and the New York Times willingly released the content of the Pentagon Papers back in 1971 and protected the identity of the leaker. But in 2023, both news agencies worked with the FBI and CIA to help them capture Jack Teixeira. Why are these two news agencies treating the two leakers completely different? To the Washington Post and the New York Times, Daniel Ellsberg was not the villain. The government was the villain which meant the leader of the government, Nixon, was the villain. To this day, most casual observers believe that Vietnam was Richard Nixon’s war when in fact, he inherited it. John F. Kennedy got us into the war, Lyndon Johnson escalated the war, whereas, Nixon had been withdrawing many our ground troops and was supporting the war effort through the air.
Because Ukraine is Joe Biden’s war, the media will work in lock step with the administration to defend and justify our participation in it. They will not ask the hard questions and will repeat the administration’s talking points to the public. So, the leaker of classified information which proves that the Biden administration has been lying to the American people about the war in Ukraine will be painted as the villain because the media’s job is not to expose the truth and hold our government officials accountable for their lies and corruption, the role of the media is to be propagandist for a Democrat administration and be attack dogs against Republicans. It does not have to even be said. We all know that if Donald Trump was the President, and a low-level airman had leaked classified documents which revealed the lies and corruption of the Trump administration’s role in a foreign war, the leaker would be hailed as the hero, and the focus would be 100% on the content of the leak and the destruction of Trump.
From 2017 to 2020, the media heralded as a courageous hero any government official who leaked classified or private information which harmed Donald Trump. James Comey was celebrated for leaking classified information to the New York Times which led to the fraudulent Russian investigation of President Trump which hamstrung most of his first term. Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman leaked the contents of a classified phone conversation between Donald Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky about the corruption of Hunter Biden which was used to impeach Trump, and the media protected Vindman as a whistle blower and portrayed him as a hero.
When the leak hurts a Republican President, the focus is entirely on the content of the leak, and not the leaker. But when the leak hurts a Democrat Politician, the focus is entirely on the leaker, and the content of the leak is ignored. Edward Snowden and Julian Assange leaked classified information that exposed the lies and corruption of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton and were attacked and vilified for it. Assange’s leaks showed that Hillary Clinton had set up an illegal private server at her home and was illegally conducting official government business and sending classified information across that unsecured server which had been hacked by foreign agents.
Edward Snowden’s leaks showed that under Barack Obama, the United States government was spying on American citizens in direct violation of our FISA courts and our Constitutional rights. For their efforts for trying to protect America and its citizens from government corruption, Assange is sitting in Belmarsh Prison in England right now, and Snowden has been living in Russia under political asylum for the last 10 years. Daniel Ellsberg was initially charged with conspiracy, espionage, and theft of government property, for stealing and releasing the Pentagon Papers which carried a maximum of 115 years in prison, but he had all the charges eventually dismissed. Ellsberg is still celebrated as a hero. In 2006, he won the Right Livelihood Award, which is an alternative to the Nobel Prize, and in 2018, he won Olof Palme Prize for "profound humanism and exceptional moral courage."
This is part of the multi-tiered justice system that is playing itself out across America’s political landscape. Republicans will be held to the highest account of the law, and democrats will be allowed to get away with almost anything short of murder. If you are a government whistleblower under a Democrat administration, you’ll be treated as the vilest criminal, but if your government whistleblower under a Republican administration, you’ll be heralded as a hero. Everyone who releasing classified documents to the public should be held accountable under our laws, not just the ones who harm Democrats.
Judd Garrett is a graduate from Princeton University, and a former NFL player, coach, and executive. He has been a contributor to the website Real Clear Politics. He has recently published his first novel, No Wind.