Last year, the Committee to Protect Journalists published a scathing report on the conduct of the Obama Administration. Its author, Leonard Downie Jr., who worked on the Watergate investigation at the Washington Post, declared that Obama's "war on leaks and other efforts to control information are the most aggressive I’ve seen since the Nixon administration." David E. Sanger, the chief Washington correspondent for The New York Times, characterized today's executive branch as "the most closed, control freak administration I’ve ever covered."
Back then, Obama seemed to be at war with whistleblowers and classified leaks. This week, the Obama Administration is targeting some noncombatant observers.
According to a new policy put out by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, some current and former intelligence employees will be prohibited from discussing state secrets that have already been revealed to the public by someone else. They "must not use sourcing that comes from known leaks, or unauthorized disclosures of sensitive information,” the policy states, threatening "the imposition of civil and administrative penalties."
In a few days, Glenn Greenwald is releasing a new book that includes new revelations sourced to the documents leaked by Edward Snowden. This rule won't help the Obama Administration to hide the classified material in those documents. It won't prevent foreigners from reading the documents. But it will help the Obama Administration to exert marginally more control over the political and policy debates that will inevitably be prompted by the newest disclosures.