Latest News, Opinion

Editorial: Loose lips birth deadly results

The Journal editorial

Keeping secrets can be just as important as uncovering them for intelligence agencies. An enemy’s knowledge of what one knows can be dangerous.

The anger of British officials about leaks regarding their investigation of the Manchester concert hall bombing is understandable, then. Americans ought to be just as concerned.

Press reports in our country have revealed, step by step, what British authorities are doing in tracking down accomplices of the suicide bomber who killed 22 people in Manchester. That has infuriated British officials, who understandably do not want the terrorists to have any more information than absolutely necessary.

We in the press have an obligation to withhold some information in criminal investigations, of course. Our job is to report the news — not make it by tipping terrorists off that police are hot on their heels.

But — and this is a very big “but” — reporters often assume that if information was sensitive, U.S. intelligence officials would not be giving it to the press.

Apparently that has not been the case. British officials say they are angry about information leaked to the media by U.S. intelligence sources.

So bad is the situation that British officials say they will stop sharing information about the probe with U.S. officials, until they can be assured of confidentiality.

Clearly, that hampers U.S. anti-terrorism work. Obviously, irresponsible leaks of intelligence information have to stop.

See more from The Journal

Comments are closed.

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

And get our latest content in your inbox

Invalid email address