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‘A nightmare for the Five Eyes’: New batch of classified documents leaked to social media

Helene CooperJulian E. BarnesEric Schmitt and Thomas Gibbons-Neff, SMH, April 8, 2023

Washington: A new batch of classified documents that appear to detail US national security secrets from Ukraine to the Middle East to China has surfaced on social media sites, alarming the Pentagon and adding turmoil to a situation that seemed to have caught the Biden administration off guard.

The scale of the leak – analysts say more than 100 documents may have been obtained – along with the sensitivity of the documents themselves, could be hugely damaging, US officials said. A senior intelligence official called the leak “a nightmare for the Five Eyes”, in a reference to the US, Britain, Australia, New Zealand and Canada, the so-called Five Eyes nations that broadly share intelligence.

The latest documents were found on Twitter and other sites on Friday (US time), a day after senior Biden administration officials said they were investigating a potential leak of classified Ukrainian war plans, include an alarming assessment of Ukraine’s faltering air defence capabilities. One slide, dated February 23, is labelled “Secret/NoForn”, meaning it was not meant to be shared with foreign countries………………….

One analyst described what has emerged so far as the “tip of the iceberg”.

Earlier, senior national security officials dealing with the initial leak, which was first reported by The New York Times, said a new worry had arisen: Was that information the only intelligence that was leaked?

By Friday afternoon, they had their answer. Even as officials at the Defence Department and national security agencies were investigating the source of documents that had appeared on Twitter and on Telegram, another surfaced on 4chan, an anonymous, fringe message board. The 4chan document is a map that purports to show the status of the war in the eastern Ukrainian city of Bakhmut, the scene of a fierce, months-long battle.

But the leaked documents appear to go well beyond highly classified material on Ukraine war plans. Security analysts who have reviewed the documents tumbling onto social media sites say the increasing trove also includes sensitive briefing slides on China, the Indo-Pacific military theatre, the Middle East and terrorism………………………………………………………………………… more


April 10, 2023 - Posted by | 2 WORLD, secrets,lies and civil liberties

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