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New York Times tips off Islamic Charity of Raid

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posted on Sep, 29 2004 @ 03:11 PM
Shortly after 9/11 the FBI was in the process of planning a raid on Global Relief Foundation, an Islamic charity suspected of providing financing for Al Qaeda. The Foundation was reportedly tipped off by a reporter for the NYT, which may have led to the Foundation destroying documents the night before the December raid according the 9/11 commission.

The US attorney's office is now seeking subpoenas for the Times to determine who leaked the imminent raid to them.

Chicago U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald, who is also acting as a special prosecutor in the CIA leak probe, informed the Times by letter last week that his office has subpoenaed telephone company records. The move is part of an effort to determine whether anyone in the government told Times reporters of planned federal asset seizures in December 2001 at the offices of an Islamic charity suspected of providing funding to al Qaeda, according to several sources familiar with the case.

The subpoena seeks the phone records of two Times reporters, Philip Shenon and Judith Miller, according to the sources. Officials at the Times and in Fitzgerald's office refused to comment.

This case will pit the rights of reporters to protect their confidential sources against national security concerns. I have to admit I'm disgusted that the NYT would tip off Global Relief that the Feds were coming - but I do respect the journalist's right to keep his sources secret. Where do we draw the line?

Washington Post

posted on Oct, 1 2004 @ 01:43 PM
I think the line has to be drawn at aiding illegal or dangerous activities, which this action did. It's one thing to protect sources but another to actively assist a group in obstructing justice. Besides that, I sometimes feel like I would want them forced to give up the source. I am very suspicious of anonymous sources because I don't know if they exist. That's why anytime I read something from "a person who refused to be identified" or "an anonymous source close to ______", I discount it because for all I know the reporter needed some juice so made it up themselves, knowing they'd never have to reveal their source without making the cops look like commies.

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