I was once an Air Force radio operator assigned to an air-ground radio station located overseas. Behind the cipher-locked door of our facility operators routinely handled classified material. Even the trash was classified. Occasionally we’d get a new operator. One young airman, we’ll call him Ray, arrived right out of technical school. He was about as green as the White House lawn.
Some of Ray’s mates preyed on his gullibility and orchestrated a prank to break him in. They took pages from an unclassified publication stamped “Top Secret” at the top and bottom of each page, and stuffed it into Ray’s briefcase when he wasn’t looking.
Back at the barracks they discovered the bogus classified material and confronted Ray directly. Ray’s short career must have passed before his eyes! He thought he’d failed to safeguard classified material and the punishment for such transgressions was frightening. They had to peel Ray off the ceiling.
Then there’s the security misadventures of Hillary Clinton. Unlike Ray, she’s not new to handling and safeguarding classified material. Ray couldn’t tell the material marked as classified was actually not. Clinton alleges she couldn’t tell that unmarked email actually was. Hillary was the secretary of state, designated by the president as a classifying authority. As such she was charged to designate what should be classified or what should not.
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In basketball lexicon it was, “no harm, no foul” for Ray. For Hillary, it should be an intentional flagrant foul and ejection!
Bill Malec, O’Fallon