September 20, 2013
The Hidden Classified Briefing Most of Congress Missed

Inside the House of Representatives, there is an internal communications system designed specifically for members and their staffs. It’s a legacy product from when members used to send each other physical interoffice mail, addressed “Dear Colleague.”
The “e-Dear Colleague” system now exists as an intranet database of messages that can be searched by topic, and as a kind of listserv on official doings for the 435 representatives’ offices. With so many people on it, the volume of email is high, which is why when there’s an important intelligence briefing for members of Congress, staffers are formally notified directly by their party leaders in the House.
Except in August, according to Rep. Justin Amash, when something extraordinary happened. An important national-security document the libertarian Michigan Republican and some of his colleagues on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence had been trying to see for some time was made available to all members on less than 24 hours’ notice by the Intelligence Committee chair, with a viewing scheduled for when they were supposed to be voting, and on the very day Congress was set to begin its five-week summer recess. And the email went out through the “e-Dear Colleague” system, where it was buried.
Read more. [Image: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters]

The Hidden Classified Briefing Most of Congress Missed

Inside the House of Representatives, there is an internal communications system designed specifically for members and their staffs. It’s a legacy product from when members used to send each other physical interoffice mail, addressed “Dear Colleague.”

The “e-Dear Colleague” system now exists as an intranet database of messages that can be searched by topic, and as a kind of listserv on official doings for the 435 representatives’ offices. With so many people on it, the volume of email is high, which is why when there’s an important intelligence briefing for members of Congress, staffers are formally notified directly by their party leaders in the House.

Except in August, according to Rep. Justin Amash, when something extraordinary happened. An important national-security document the libertarian Michigan Republican and some of his colleagues on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence had been trying to see for some time was made available to all members on less than 24 hours’ notice by the Intelligence Committee chair, with a viewing scheduled for when they were supposed to be voting, and on the very day Congress was set to begin its five-week summer recess. And the email went out through the “e-Dear Colleague” system, where it was buried.

Read more. [Image: Kevin Lamarque/Reuters]

  1. political-fanatic reblogged this from theatlantic
  2. hexoatl reblogged this from theatlantic and added:
    Disgusting, yet I’m not surprised in the least. The “intelligence” community is running rampant with no leash or...
  3. thepeopleseason reblogged this from cognitivedissonance
  4. this-is-eirikur reblogged this from cognitivedissonance and added:
    “There’s no point in acting all surprised about it. All the planning charts and demolition orders have been on display...
  5. secular-paladin reblogged this from cognitivedissonance and added:
    DOUBLE SECRET PROBATION
  6. cognitivedissonance reblogged this from theatlantic
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  11. oldauntamy reblogged this from theatlantic and added:
    Dear Government: You’re all embarrassing teenagers. Please stop trying to act so cool, so all-knowing, so ridiculous....
  12. oldparasitesingle reblogged this from theatlantic
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  15. ourparalleluniverses reblogged this from theatlantic and added:
    The Hidden Classified Briefing Most of Congress Missed Inside the House of Representatives, there is an internal...
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