By Kevin Coleman Defense Tech Cyber Warfare Correspondent
The beltway is abuzz with talk of cyber espionage and betrayal. While not your typical spy story, the events have all the making of a great movie or novel. The act of espionage is the recently disclosed theft of 260,000 documents/cables from the State Department.
Inside sources say that Pentagon investigators, several members of our intelligence community, and third parties that played some part in the documents are in a global man-hunt for Julian Assange, the Australian born founder of Wikileaks. Intelligence sources say Wikileaks is about to publish the massive stash of classified State Department documents/ cables.
If this were to take place, it would result in serious damage to our national security. They very well could reveal "sources and methods" used by our intelligence community to collect foreign intelligence. These documents are said to have been, but remains unconfirmed by the DoD or State Department, exfiltrated by U.S. Army intelligence analyst Bradley Manning, who was arrested earlier this month for espionage after leaking a classified video of attack-helicopter gun camera footage from Iraq.
The 260,000 documents are said to include content about multiple foreign governments and intelligence agencies in the middle-east and possibly beyond. Philip J. Crowley, the State Department’s chief spokesman confirmed that the State department is involved with the aggressive investigation, led by the Pentagon into any documents/cables that Manning may have stolen off of the interagency computer network.
The Executive Branch, State Department and American embassies and others are said to be preparing for the massive, unauthorized release of classified diplomatic communications. One report stated these documents contain “harsh evaluations of foreign leaders as well as a fairly detailed description of the inner-workings of how American’s foreign policy decisions and activities take place.
Other comments suggest that sensitive communication with Israel is also included in these documents. If that is indeed true, I am sure the Mossad is hot on the case. This is very serious.
You can see the stress on Secretary of State Clinton’s face. Many intelligence professionals have openly stated that the unprecedented race to find Wikileaks’ Julian Assange is on. Who knows, maybe he has already been found and depending on who found him, we may never hear from him again.