Friday, April 28, 2006

Danish Reporters Arrested For Publishing Iraq Weapons Story

The targeting of leaks and leakers is not merely a Washington obsession these days. Though it is likely that, given the nature of the information, the Danish government received helpful U.S. input in this matter.

Two reporters at one of Denmark's largest newspapers could face jail time for publishing classified intelligence reports about Iraq's weapons program, a prosecutor said Thursday.

Michael Bjerre and Jesper Larsen of the Berlingske Tidende newspaper were charged Wednesday with publishing confidential government documents, state prosecutor Karsten Hjorth said. If convicted, they could be fined or sentenced to as much as two years in prison.

No trial date was set.

In February and March 2004, Bjerre and Larsen wrote a series of articles based on leaked reports from the Danish Defense Intelligence Service. The reports said there was no evidence that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction during Saddam Hussein's rule--one of the main reasons given by the Bush administration for the U.S.-led invasion in 2003.

Editor in Chief Niels Lunde said the Berlingske Tidende and its reporters acted correctly. "Jesper Larsen and Michael Bjerre have carried out a precious piece of work," Lunde said in a statement.

Former intelligence officer Frank Grevil was convicted in late 2004 of leaking the documents to the reporters and was sentenced to four months in prison. During trial, he said he acted in the public interest.

These reporters did not publish secret war plans or anything else that could have been truly dangerous to national security.

They published information that was classified only to keep a politically embarrassing situation under wraps.

Washington is watching this case to see how much public support the reporters get in Denmark. If the heat is not too bad, we can expect to see American reporters start getting the same treatment.


Anonymous Cloudberry Charlie said...

Oh no, the Eff-Wit is coming down with the Meatball flu.

Cloudberry Charlie

4/28/2006 7:43 PM  
Blogger Effwit said...

Cloudberry Charlie:


I have the rockin' pneumonia and the boogie-woogie flu.

The Scandinavian POV comes from many years of studying the classic, "I Am Curious Yellow."

4/28/2006 8:04 PM  
Anonymous CC said...

You are just full of surprises. Now there is a most excellent outdoor bar and grill (see map link) called just that in Stockholm. It's down by the waterfront on the isle in Stockholm characterized as a sort of gentrified bohemian enclave a la NY's SoHo. Tis a most excellent place to get sloshed and quaffed.


Here's a link to their website:

Click on the link Bilder written in chalk

A piece of summer paradise in the city of sin and meddling-free abortions
(No wonder Jeb loves the place!)

4/28/2006 8:30 PM  
Blogger Effwit said...



Looks like a cool place.

If it's good enough for Jeb, then it's good enough for me.

He comes from a really good family.

4/28/2006 9:09 PM  
Blogger Meatball One said...

Jeb would never go there. But Stockholm, well Stockholm he loves.
Then again, Jeb would go there, but his wife wouldn't enjoy herself. But he would - but only cuz he comes from a good family.

When he's here with his wife he goes here:

That's quite another thing.

4/28/2006 9:16 PM  
Blogger Effwit said...


I was hoping you would add your two cents.

Your expertise on matters Skankanavian is beyond question.

(H)is wife wouldn't enjoy herself.

From what I have heard, his wife doesn't go everywhere with him.

4/28/2006 9:44 PM  

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