The Growth of Press Freedoms in the United States Since 9/11
Leaks, National Security, and Freedom of the Press, Forthcoming
14 Pages Posted: 22 Apr 2020
Date Written: April 13, 2020
The number, frequency, and seriousness of leaks of classified information have grown sharply in the last two decades. The government has reacted to these leaks with several initiatives to stop or deter them. Journalists and their allies, in turn, have complained that these initiatives have narrowed press freedoms and damaged the First Amendment. This essay argues that the journalists are wrong. The last two decades have witnessed an unprecedented growth in press freedoms in the national security context, and greater protection for journalists in their reporting of national security secrets. The indictment of Julian Assange is no violation of this norm, and in many ways confirms it.
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