This story got buried under the deluge of breaking news on Sunday, but Fox News' Catherine Herridge and Pamela Browne reported a scoop late Friday that undercuts yet another lie Hillary Clinton and her allies have advanced over the course of her email scandal. You'll recall how Clinton's excuses evolved from a blanket "there is no classified material" (false), to "nothing was classified at the time" (false), to "I didn't send anything that was classified" (false), before finally settling on "nothing was marked classified at the time." As we've discussed previously, this final iteration is legally irrelevant; upon taking office, Clinton signed a binding non-disclosure agreement swearing to protect all classified information, both marked and unmarked. The document was very explicit that government officials have a duty to recognize and safeguard sensitive material -- and we've learned that some of Hillary's emails discussed issues like North Korea's nuclear weapons, the Iran negotiations, and drone strikes in Pakistan.
We've also discussed how the "marked classified" distinction is meaningless, and not just because of the aforementioned NDA. Intelligence is classified due to the nature of its contents, not based on whether someone marks it as such. Plus, her email server was set up and operated in such a way that intentionally avoided the official system and bypassed those who would be assessing sensitivity and applying formal designations. Jonah Goldberg put it this way late last month: "How could the classified material she sent be marked 'classified' if the whole point of her shadow server was to avoid oversight by the people who do the classifying?" Exactly. Before we get to Herridge's new story, let's also recall the evidence that Mrs. Clinton requested that markings be stripped off of classified material and sent to her on her unsecure system. All of which is to say that the parsed "marked classified at the time" justification has always been exceedingly weak. And now we have this:
Hillary Clinton, from the moment her exclusive use of personal email for government business was exposed, has claimed nothing she sent or received was marked classified at the time. But a 2012 email released by the State Department appears to challenge that claim because it carries a classified code known as a “portion marking” - and that marking was on the email when it was sent directly to Clinton’s account. The “C” - which means it was marked classified at the confidential level - is in the left-hand-margin and relates to an April 2012 phone call with Malawi's first female president, Joyce Banda, who took power after the death of President Mutharika in 2012. "(C) Purpose of Call: to offer condolences on the passing of President Mukharika and congratulate President Banda on her recent swearing in." Everything after that was fully redacted before it was publicly released by the State Department -- a sign that the information was classified at the time and dealt with sensitive government deliberations.
A one-off mistake that may have escaped her attention? Nope:
A US government source said there are other Clinton emails with classified markings, or marked classified, beyond the April 2012 document...Congressman Mike Pompeo, who sits on the House Intelligence Committee, has read the 22 Top Secret emails too damaging to national security to release, and routinely reviews classified documents. While he could not speak directly to the April 2012 email, he said, "I've seen information like that often. Often certain parts of a particular message will be unclassified and other parts will be classified and they are almost always marked paragraph by paragraph."...On Wednesday, Clinton told Bret Baier on Special Report, “the fact is, nothing that I sent or received was marked classified, and nothing has been demonstrated to contradict that. “
That is not a fact, actually, and this evidence contradicts it -- even more explicitly than a similar story that broke in early 2016. Click through for the rest of Herridge and Browne's piece, which includes speculation from Clinton advisor Sidney Blumenthal (about whom Hillary has also lied) that the man who hacked his emails (thus exposing a separate Hillary lie) may have been working for Russian intelligence. That man, known as Guccifer, says he also penetrated Clinton's server and has been extradited to the United States by investigators. I'll leave you with Herridge's on-air report, followed by an interesting tease from Wikileaks founder Julian Assange:
WikiLeaks to publish more Hillary Clinton emails, says Julian Assange https://t.co/A7LEsFeDCo— TIME.com (@TIME) June 13, 2016