On Tuesday evening, RedState reported on another major DOJ leak about the Mar-a-Lago raid. Just like those that followed, the leak ran rampant through the media, ushering in a fresh chorus of “the walls are closing in” as the most hysterical among us pronounced Trump doomed.
According to The Washington Post, the former president had a document that described the nuclear capabilities of a foreign nation.
A document describing a foreign government’s military defenses, including its nuclear capabilities, was found by FBI agents who searched former president Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residenceand private club last month, according to people familiar with the matter, underscoring concerns among U.S. intelligence officials about classified material stashed in the Florida property.
Is this more proof that Trump put national security in danger and violated the law regarding the handling of classified information? That’s certainly the impression the Post wants you to take from their report, and to be sure, many did. Here’s Laurence Tribe and Adam Schiff both losing their minds over the revelation, which may or may not even be true given the Post’s track record regarding these types of leaks.
That’s just a small sampling of the histrionics shown on social media, but ask yourself, does the Post’s reporting justify those reactions? Does it actually say what people are purporting that it says?
Understand, that the point of these leaks is simple. They don’t happen to inform or advance the cause of justice. Rather, the DOJ leaks for one reason: To cause the minds of the public to wander. The DOJ wants people to take the mention of “nuclear capabilities” and extrapolate that into all kinds of crazy assumptions not actually backed by evidence, causing harm to Trump.
Do you know who is aware of that political gambit by the government? Judge Aileen Cannon, which is exactly why she appointed a special master despite the protestations of “legal analysts” everywhere.
Let’s talk about the specifics here, and what the Post’s report says and doesn’t say. What it says is that “a document describing a foreign power’s military defenses” was found in the trove of documents seized from Mar-a-Lago. Ask yourself what it doesn’t say, though, because nothing written in the Post’s article is accidental. Everything is deliberately formed to push a specific narrative.
Think about it. The Post has had no problem describing other documents as classified while working as the DOJ’s passthrough for damaging Trump leaks. In this case, though, there is no mention of the classification of this specific document. What’s that tell? It tells you that it wasn’t even classified.
If it wasn’t classified, that means it could be just about anything, including many things that would be completely proper for the former president to have had. I can go right now and search the internet for information about Iran’s nuclear capabilities. Am I now a spy because I have those documents? In this case, we could be talking about something as mundane as a news article Trump held on to or a mention of nuclear capabilities in one of his letters to foreign leaders.
We can’t know for sure because the DOJ crafted its leak to provide maximum political damage while not actually telling the public anything at all. That behavior is exactly why Judge Cannon was correct to slap down the government’s arguments and appoint a special master. If the DOJ can’t be trusted to not leak out the very materials it claims are criminal for Trump to possess, it certainly can’t be trusted to be the arbiter of what’s privileged and what’s not among the documents taken.
Note that we went from “Trump has classified US nuclear secrets” in the first iteration of this leak to “Trump had a document talking about another country’s nuclear capabilities” weeks later. The story is constantly shifting, and the same people who swallowed the first leak are more than happy to swallow the second. It is pathetic to watch them react the same way to every single “bombshell,” as if history doesn’t exist. We’ve been doing this for seven years now, and the song remains the same.