Skip to comments.Berger-Clinton Conspiracy?
Posted on 04/21/2016 8:26:15 PM PDT by Rabin
Top Clinton aide, Sandy Berger, stole and destroyed Classified and marked "TOP SECRET" documents out of the highest security sector of the National Archives. Berger admitted to walking off with 40 to 50 top-secret documents, in his socks, claims it was an "honest mistake".
(Excerpt) Read more at abovetopsecret.com ...
Rab can but wonder.
Heavily covered here 15 years ago.
Many times, since, too.
Hence lost but not quite forgot (just move on?).
Certainly worth covering again now.
A motive never was established for Berger’s thievery, and we have seen Hillary’s lies and corruption out in the open during the Obama regime.
Too bad Berger died four months ago.
He got away with it. That’s all.
It is still funny -— and sad -— that old Western style justice still did not exist. So many of our problems today would never have happened.
I heard some speculation about his motive and that was to remove and destroy the copy that had Clinton's hand-written comments in the margin, though no speculation of what those comments might have been. This makes some sense because there were other copies of the documents that Berger stole.
In a way the real story is the difference of how this was portrayed in the media. I mean, can you imagine if a Republican president's National Security Advisor stole documents from the National Archives? And can you imagine if a Republican administration sold M-16s to Mexican drug lords? It would be quite different and we all know it.
Only Mr. Berger knows what transpired on his first two visits, when he reviewed collections of confidential memos, e-mails, and handwritten notes, including materials taken from counter-terrorism adviser Richard Clarke's office - all of which were not catalogued at the individual item level.
On Mr. Berger's third visit Archives employees became suspicious that he might be removing classified material. Rather than directly confront a former Cabinet-level official, Archives officials simply took steps to identify further theft on succeeding visits. That is how Mr. Berger's thefts on his fourth and last visit were documented.
We don't know what Mr. Berger might have removed from the uncatalogued materials reviewed in his earlier visits, but we know his last visit focused on a memorandum called the Millennium Alert After Action Report (MAAAR). Copies of this report were made available to the 9/11 Commission, but the information in those copies undoubtedly is not what interested Berger most. Berger took five copies of the report and later destroyed three of them.
What was on the copies he destroyed? Handwritten notes from Berger, the President, or some other official? Observations that would be embarrassing to them, evidence they missed an important threat or considered or recommended actions - or decisions not to act - they wouldn't want to defend in public? Evidence, perhaps, that would have supported the Bush Administration? We don't know, and no one who does is saying, but the evidence must have been terribly damning for Berger to take the risks he did.
There are good reasons to protect sensitive communications within the government. Some discussions should be private if presidents are to have the best advice and the nation is to have the best decisions on sensitive matters. The President and top officials should be able to explore options and discuss threats - among themselves and with their key staff members - without fear that a remark taken out of context or poorly phrased will come back to haunt them.
Laws that endeavor to strike the balance between salutary confidentiality and beneficial public disclosure at times tilt too far to disclosure. In public debate, advantages of disclosure are often easier to explain than advantages of secrecy. That, in part, follows from the nature of secrets - if you don't reveal them, you can't explain fully why they should have stayed secret.
The Berger episode, however, strictly involves materials that are supposed to be turned over under the law, materials specifically covered by a presidential directive that authorized sharing the information with those investigating 9/11 intelligence-gathering and evaluation. Mr. Berger's willingness to risk everything to suppress the information goes well beyond ordinary concerns against excessive disclosure.
Bill Clinton obviously has great sensitivity to his place in history and to accusations that he did too little to respond to al-Qaeda, that he is to some degree responsible for failing to prevent 9/11's tragedy. That is why he and his lieutenants made reckless and baseless accusations against the current Bush administration, attempting to portray them as having dropped the baton handed off by ever-vigilant Clintonistas (who, according to John Ashcroft's testimony, withheld the MAAAR and its warnings about al-Qaeda's operations in the US from the Bush transition team).
But maybe there is more to the story. Maybe there is something far worse than we can imagine that is worth having his chief security aide risk his reputation, his career, and his liberty to cover up.
Mr. Berger, the Clintons, and their allies do not want questions about this story asked or answered. Mr. Berger's lawyer, Lanny Breuer, along with former Clinton officials, assured us that all of the material destroyed by Berger existed in other form and was made available to the 9/11 investigations, that nothing relevant to the Clinton Administration's response to al-Qaeda was withheld.
Of course, we also were assured that Monica had only imagined a relationship with Bill and that rumors to the contrary were, in Hillary's famous phrase, the work of a "vast right-wing conspiracy."
Politicians never like to admit mistakes. They see legitimate inquiries as politically inspired, which they often are. Changing the subject or shifting blame to others aren't tactics peculiar to the Clintons.
The Clintons, however, take the game of deny-deceive-and-distract to a new level. Their relentless personal attacks on Ken Starr were designed to undermine the credibility of information about Bill Clinton's perjury, to deflect attention from his own failings. Clinton's excessive reaction - complete with hyperbole, finger-wagging, and scolding - to a simple question from Fox News' Chris Wallace about his response to al-Qaeda is in the same vein. Something here touches a nerve.
That nerve is exposed in the Sandy Berger saga. This story at bottom is about the security of our nation, about what was - or was not - done to protect us from the most shocking and deadly attack on American citizens by foreign agents in our nation's history. This story is critical not only to understanding our past but also to securing our future. It can help us understand what it is reasonable to expect can be done to keep us and our loved ones safe from harm. It is, in short, as important a story as there is.
It is a story the news media should be desperate to explore, not desperate to avoid.
They should want to know the full story, no matter what the implications are for the legacy of a president much loved by an overwhelmingly liberal media or what the risks are for a former First Lady whose future is tied to her husband's past. Those risks loom especially large before a field of potential Republican presidential candidates with strong reputations in security matters - like Rudy Giuliani, for example, whose courageous performance on 9/11 still resonates.
Those who wrap themselves so frequently in the mantra of the people's right to know should want to know the truth - all the time. Sadly, today's would-be Woodwards and Bernsteins look more like ostriches than hawks, showing no curiosity about what Sandy Berger was hiding. Had that been the attitude when Watergate first appeared as a minor news story, Richard Nixon would have served out his full second term. The rest, as they say, is history.
Mr. Cass, Chairman of the Center for the Rule of Law and Dean Emeritus of Boston University School of Law, served Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush as Commissioner and Vice-Chairman of the US International Trade Commission.
Haddn’t heard. I would have thrown a party.
GW let him get away with it. Why?
Papers that have gone where no papers have gone before
Be back bump
Nothing happened to Sandy, just as nothing happened to Bill just as nothing will happen to Hillary.
Because you don't cut off your nose to spite your face.
Just like with Hillary and the Obama Administration, if you expose 'them', you expose yourself.
Bush couldn't expose Clinton without exposing his own father.
If he had classified papers in his socks,which is not the most secure place, does that mean the other places were already full of classified papers? Just an honest mistake; everyone does it.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.