Reality Winner - the 25 Year Old NSA Subcontractor/Leaker

Have you heard of Reality Leigh Winner? You will. Just like Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden, Reality will seep into your consciousness. The 25 year old with (now rescinded we hope) Top Secret clearance who worked for an NSA subcontractor called Pluribus International Corporation. And who apparently admitted to the FBI over this past weekend that she had indeed photocopied or printed out classified material and mailed said material to an online news outlet.

Oh, and Reality (once again, this is the first name of a very real person) started her employment contract with Pluribus International on or around February 13th of this year, and worked out of a facility in Georgia.

Thought it was just top level intel community folks who were doing the leaking? Thought it was just a cloak and dagger game between powerful players lurking in the shadows? It surely is also or mostly that, but now anyone can join in on the leaking fun it seems. Even a 25 year old Air Force vet who managed to get a job with top secret clearance. And who is very "passionate" according to an interview with her mom, conducted by The Daily Beast.

All you need, apparently, is to get a gig working for an NSA subcontractor. Just ask Snowden.

Never mind the mundane conclusion any rational being would come up with: that the intel community needs to reform it's entire command and control structure starting with its top brass' propensity for influencing the politics of any given administration by continually leaking on the way to a publishing deal. And also reform itself by ensuring that top secret clearance is handed out as sparingly as possible. Which admittedly in today's world of massive data gathering, sorting, and analyzing by those agencies, is a tough ask. But you wonder how many leaks British intel has had, by comparison. Just asking.

Leaking has of course long been normalized by the political and security classes in Washington D.C. This has to change and the fact that a kid just out of Air Force duty has leaked important information that will damage the country's security interests in untold ways is the last straw. One hopes at least.

But that shouldn't worry Reality Leigh Winner. She will become a heroine before the week is up. Guaranteed. She will be painted as a brave whistleblower who is the victim of gender discrimination. The very discrimination that kept Hillary out of the White House. That and the frickin DNC's data room, if you take Hillary's recent words at face value.

And yes, she will be made to pay for what senior officials - uhm, like HRC and her server maybe? - have gotten away with. Reality will be seen as a scapegoat, and in some ways she is. Not because she shouldn't have been detained and shouldn't be charged. She damn well should. But because more than few of her higher ups should also be.

The out-of-control leaking has to stop. This might just be a start to that process of plugging the leaks that are flooding Washington. One can only pray it is.

Posted by Keeley at June 6, 2017 8:10 PM
Comment #417082

This is an interesting story in that there are so many high level officials leaking, almost on a daily basis but, the one to face criminal charges is a young 25 year old grunt.

How is that possible? Could she have been set up to take a fall for the higher end folks. How is it possible that someone who apparently held an air force clearance and now a clearance thru a supposedly reliable NSA contractor could carry out such a serious security offense? Political? Mad at the system? Mad at her boss? Done during a reefer experience?

Well, one can bet that old judge Jeff Sessions ain’t going to go light on her. Not to make an example of her but just considering the seriousness of the security breach.

I’m hoping Sessions will clean out some of the many Chinese and Soviet spies that have infiltrated the security services over the last 20 or so years. I think the previous admins felt it was a good thing to let our ‘neighbors’ know whats going on so as not to alarm them at some later date.

Probably nothing in the leaked report that the sov’s/chinese didn’t already know. Just let her go?-, and so on - - -

Posted by: Roy Ellis at June 6, 2017 9:28 PM
Comment #417088

What I concluded from this article is that specifically, a country’s security is at stake because of a 25-year-old Air Force officer. This is a serious issue which should be taken into consideration as soon as possible.
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Posted by: Gary Wilson at June 7, 2017 3:55 AM
Comment #417090

She’s not the top of the feeding chain. But she could be a link that could lead us to the one who is. Should be interesting to see what she’ll be willing to give up to save her own ass.

Posted by: dbs at June 7, 2017 6:58 AM
Comment #417093

I wonder if this kid realized what she’s done, or if she thinks she’s some kind of hero.

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 7, 2017 11:38 AM
Comment #417096

Benedict Arnold thought he was a hero Weary.

Posted by: Royal Flush at June 7, 2017 1:23 PM
Comment #417100

The leaker acted alone. She gave a classified document to The Intercept, which took the original to the NSA to ask if it was true. The NSA took the document, used it to track down the copier, and nailed the leaker. She will probably go to jail for a while.

The document shows the federal government knows there was an even broader assault during the 2016 campaign than recognized. The Russians were going after the VOTING SYSTEM. We already know they made multiple attacks against state’s voter registration rolls, and succeeded at least four times. As far as we know, their successes did not change the votes in those four states.

But it does raise the question: how far did the Russians penetrate the voting system, and did they change votes?

Posted by: phx8 at June 7, 2017 2:36 PM
Comment #417105

Of course she acted alone
Just those IRS employees in Cincinnati. Ba ha ha ha !!!!

Posted by: dbs at June 7, 2017 5:11 PM
Comment #417112

No, the Russians made her do it.

Posted by: Weary Willie at June 7, 2017 9:27 PM
Comment #417114

phx8 Where is the evidence that the RUSSIANS were going after voting systems? Even the document leaked says that it should be taken at face value.

And no they weren’t going after voting machines, the worst that they could have done if they were to have tricked anyone at that company to click on the link was get some login information into the corporate systems, not the voting machine networks (they are isolated) and all of the actual voting machines used in the election were already in the field by then…

You have to stop with the hysteric conspiracy theories, it’s not helping your credibility at all here.

how far did the Russians penetrate the voting system, and did they change votes?

Whoever it was didn’t and no they didn’t. Every audit has shown this.

Posted by: Rhinehold at June 7, 2017 9:43 PM
Comment #417115

phx8, Hillary lost because she ran a stupidly bad campaign, the same one that Trump’s opponents in the primaries ran, and she didn’t learn from that. The only person she could have beaten to become president, the only person with higher negatives than she had GOING IN to the election, and she couldn’t manage it.

She didn’t deserve to be president if she couldn’t manage that simple task, did she? And people are talking about her and her daughter running in 2020? No one using their brains anymore. I stated before the primaries that if the left wanted to win they would nominate Elizabeth Warren. She would have beaten Trump easy… But there was a debt to be paid, a promise to keep I suppose. Hillary WANTED to run against Trump and she got what she wanted and failed.

Posted by: Rhinehold at June 7, 2017 9:46 PM
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