‘They hanged him? What difference at this point does it make?’

Second World War posters warned repeatedly against discussion of ship movements, war production, and indeed anything else Nazi spies might report to waiting submarines.  The government had to rely on defense workers, dock workers, and people with similar knowledge of war-related activities to keep it to themselves, because there was no way to put controls on the information in question.

But Hillary Clinton could not manage even this basic principle when dealing with highly sensitive information, including discussions about Shahram Amiri, an Iranian nuclear scientist who was apparently spying for the United States.  Iran recently returned Mr. Amiri's body, with rope burns on its neck, to his family after executing him for treason.  Wikileaks discovered conversations about Amiri on Hillary Clinton's private and unsecured email server – the one the FBI said might have been accessed by hostile foreign agents.  This one from Jake Sullivan to Hillary Clinton does not admittedly mention Amiri by name:

Per the subject we discussed, we have a diplomatic, "psychological" issue, not a legal issue. Our friend has to be given a way out. We should recognize his concerns and frame it in terms of a misunderstanding with no malevolent intent and that we will make sure there is no recurrence. Our person won't be able to do anything anyway. If he has to leave so be it.

"Our friend has to be given a way out" is very suggestive that the individual under discussion is a spy for the United States, and that the United States needs to provide some kind of cover for him to return home without being suspected.  Enough "bits of careless talk" of this nature might have put an Iranian rope around Shahram Amiri's neck for possibly helping the United States to counteract Iran's nuclear weapon program.

Mr. Sullivan sent yet another email to Hillary Clinton on her unsecured server that might have given the Iranians another piece for their puzzle.

The gentleman you have talked to Bill Burns about has apparently gone to his country's interests section because he is unhappy with how much time it has taken to facilitate his departure. This could lead to problematic news stories in the next 24 hours. Will keep you posted.

While it again does not mention Mr. Amiri by name, the Iranians did not need to be rocket scientists to connect this statement with the man who had in fact gone to the Pakistani Embassy's Iranian interests section.  Let's remember exactly what FBI director James Comey said about the manner in which Ms. Clinton handled sensitive information.  Emphasis is mine.

Although we did not find clear evidence that Secretary Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information, there is evidence that they were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information.

… None of these e-mails should have been on any kind of unclassified system, but their presence is especially concerning because all of these e-mails were housed on unclassified personal servers not even supported by full-time security staff, like those found at Departments and Agencies of the U.S. Government—or even with a commercial service like Gmail.

… With respect to potential computer intrusion by hostile actors, we did not find direct evidence that Secretary Clinton’s personal e-mail domain, in its various configurations since 2009, was successfully hacked. But, given the nature of the system and of the actors potentially involved, we assess that we would be unlikely to see such direct evidence. We do assess that hostile actors gained access to the private commercial e-mail accounts of people with whom Secretary Clinton was in regular contact from her personal account.

The following modification of another popular World War II poster says pretty much all that needs to be said.  The difference it makes, by the way, is not only that Hillary Clinton's reckless mishandling of sensitive information might have gotten a friendly agent killed, but it will also make it difficult if not impossible to recruit other foreign nationals to spy for the United States.  Who will risk his life for us when Hillary Clinton, if she is elected or appointed to any position that has access to intelligence information, might blow his cover with a careless word?

William A. Levinson is the author of several books on business management including content on organizational psychology, as well as manufacturing productivity and quality.

Second World War posters warned repeatedly against discussion of ship movements, war production, and indeed anything else Nazi spies might report to waiting submarines.  The government had to rely on defense workers, dock workers, and people with similar knowledge of war-related activities to keep it to themselves, because there was no way to put controls on the information in question.

But Hillary Clinton could not manage even this basic principle when dealing with highly sensitive information, including discussions about Shahram Amiri, an Iranian nuclear scientist who was apparently spying for the United States.  Iran recently returned Mr. Amiri's body, with rope burns on its neck, to his family after executing him for treason.  Wikileaks discovered conversations about Amiri on Hillary Clinton's private and unsecured email server – the one the FBI said might have been accessed by hostile foreign agents.  This one from Jake Sullivan to Hillary Clinton does not admittedly mention Amiri by name:

Per the subject we discussed, we have a diplomatic, "psychological" issue, not a legal issue. Our friend has to be given a way out. We should recognize his concerns and frame it in terms of a misunderstanding with no malevolent intent and that we will make sure there is no recurrence. Our person won't be able to do anything anyway. If he has to leave so be it.

"Our friend has to be given a way out" is very suggestive that the individual under discussion is a spy for the United States, and that the United States needs to provide some kind of cover for him to return home without being suspected.  Enough "bits of careless talk" of this nature might have put an Iranian rope around Shahram Amiri's neck for possibly helping the United States to counteract Iran's nuclear weapon program.

Mr. Sullivan sent yet another email to Hillary Clinton on her unsecured server that might have given the Iranians another piece for their puzzle.

The gentleman you have talked to Bill Burns about has apparently gone to his country's interests section because he is unhappy with how much time it has taken to facilitate his departure. This could lead to problematic news stories in the next 24 hours. Will keep you posted.

While it again does not mention Mr. Amiri by name, the Iranians did not need to be rocket scientists to connect this statement with the man who had in fact gone to the Pakistani Embassy's Iranian interests section.  Let's remember exactly what FBI director James Comey said about the manner in which Ms. Clinton handled sensitive information.  Emphasis is mine.

Although we did not find clear evidence that Secretary Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information, there is evidence that they were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information.

… None of these e-mails should have been on any kind of unclassified system, but their presence is especially concerning because all of these e-mails were housed on unclassified personal servers not even supported by full-time security staff, like those found at Departments and Agencies of the U.S. Government—or even with a commercial service like Gmail.

… With respect to potential computer intrusion by hostile actors, we did not find direct evidence that Secretary Clinton’s personal e-mail domain, in its various configurations since 2009, was successfully hacked. But, given the nature of the system and of the actors potentially involved, we assess that we would be unlikely to see such direct evidence. We do assess that hostile actors gained access to the private commercial e-mail accounts of people with whom Secretary Clinton was in regular contact from her personal account.

The following modification of another popular World War II poster says pretty much all that needs to be said.  The difference it makes, by the way, is not only that Hillary Clinton's reckless mishandling of sensitive information might have gotten a friendly agent killed, but it will also make it difficult if not impossible to recruit other foreign nationals to spy for the United States.  Who will risk his life for us when Hillary Clinton, if she is elected or appointed to any position that has access to intelligence information, might blow his cover with a careless word?

William A. Levinson is the author of several books on business management including content on organizational psychology, as well as manufacturing productivity and quality.