In addition to targeting Chelsea Manning and Julian Assange, the US government is now throwing the book (well, actually, the Espionage Act) at Daniel Hale, former National Security Agency intelligence analyst turned whistleblower who leaked information about the US drone assassination program. Of course, I’m sure many of my American “progressive Democrat” friends will probably support this, as they have supported the US government’s attacks against Manning, Assange and Snowden, because, like the leaders of the Democratic party, their primary allegiance is to US imperialism above democracy and transparency.

The interesting thing I’ve been noting about the mainstream media coverage of the Hale charges is that some of them avoid talking about the information contained in his leak. For example, CNN just calls it “classified information”, “dozens of documents”, but go out of their way to mention that in his court appearance he wore “a black T-shirt that exposed tattoos on his forearms”, as if that is somehow relevant information. It’s an obvious attempt to make some kind of aspersions about his character, like he’s a member of the Bandidos or something. The New York Times at least mentions the documents were “about the military’s use of drones.” But they don’t make it clear, as The Intercept does, that the documents “detailed a secret, unaccountable process for targeting and killing people around the world, including U.S. citizens, through drone strikes.” The Guardian mentions drones, but also doesn’t mention killing citizens or civilians. Vanity Fair’s Joe Pompeo does mention them, by quoting The Intercept’s editor-in-chief, Betsy Reed, so full credit to him and that publication.

So ask yourself – why are some major media outlets, in a country that reveres freedom of the press, leaving out this critical bit of information regarding the Hale leak? In our recent Bullshit Filter series debunking Antivax claims, I pointed out that vetting your news sources is an important part of developing a news heuristic. Who do you trust? I’d suggest not trusting news sources that omit vital and relevant information from important stories.

BTW, the French government is also going after whistleblowers hard too. So much for Macron.