[A2k] Why sources of leaks of ACTA text need to be protected

James Love james.love at keionline.org
Wed Sep 8 11:32:22 PDT 2010


Recently KEI released the Consolidated ACTA Text, that "Reflects Changes
Made During The August 2010 DC Round."  The document contained this
declaration: 

"This Document Contains Foreign Government Information to be treated as
U.S. CONFIDENTIAL

A number of persons have asked us the source of the document, and our
position is to provide no information.  Our reason for being careful is
that civil servants can risk their careers or even their freedom if they
are identified as the source of a leak.  To put this into human terms,
consider what happened in 2003, when a 17 year veteran of USTR,
Christina Lund, was alleged to have to talked to U.S. Trade about the
U.S.-Chile trade negotiations (See Reuters story below).

In the case of the ACTA text, the US government has blocked public
release of all versions of the consolidated text except for the April
2010 version, following a 633 to 13 vote in the European Parliament
demanding its release.  It is appalling that the Obama Administration
continues to stonewall the public from having access to documents that
are available to all country negotiators, and to industry insiders
serving on USTR advisory boards.  It is also quite unfortunate that
government officials have to risk so much personally to overcome the
Obama administration stonewalling, to make copies of the text available
to the public.

It should also be noted that all significant improvements in the ACTA
text have been in response to criticism of the actual ACTA text, which
in all cases but one has only been possible through career threatening
leaks.  Jamie



AP • Reuters • CBS • MSNBC • Photos

USTR Reviews Clearance of Career Trade Negotiator
 Email this story

Feb 21, 2003 

By Doug Palmer
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Office of U.S. Trade Representative has told
a 17-year veteran of the agency it plans to revoke her security
clearance because she improperly shared information with industry, her
friends and former colleagues said on Friday.

The action would likely end the government career of Christina Lund, a
former deputy assistant U.S. trade representative who helped negotiate a
landmark agreement that brought China into the World Trade Organization.

Dick Self, a former U.S. trade official now in private law practice,
said such an action would make it much more difficult for USTR to work
with U.S. industry to carry out trade negotiations.

Lund became the subject of an FBI criminal investigation in May 2002
based on suspicions she leaked a document related to U.S.-Chile trade
negotiations to Inside U.S. Trade, a Washington based publication. Lund,
50, is not a political appointee and although a Democrat, has served in
the both Republican and Democratic administrations.

She was put on administrative leave and had her security clearance
suspended while the probe continued.

After the Justice Department decided in December against filing any
criminal charges, Lund asked to be reinstated.

Instead, the U.S. Trade Representative's Office has begun action to
strip Lund of her security clearance based on the grounds that she
shared certain non-classified information with industry representatives,
Self said.

Self had been informed of a memo received by Lund from the agency in
which they proposed to revoke her security clearance.

"There is a history of sharing of data that is not classified so that
the private sector understands the state of the negotiations. As long as
it doesn't give away the position of another country that's
sensitive ... that has never been regarded as inappropriate," Self said.

Sharing such information was something that "people like me and everyone
who worked there did as a matter of standard procedure and which was
always regarded as appropriate to help facilitate the negotiations," he
said.

A friend of Lund, who declined to be named and who has seen the memo,
said it does not contain any of the original charges against Lund,
including the accusation that she leaked documents to the press.

A spokesman for the U.S. Trade Representative's office declined to
comment on the case, citing federal privacy rules regarding personnel
matters.

On its Web Site, USTR describes how it routinely works with cleared
private sector advisers to formulate trade policy.

"This advisory process has been extremely successful during negotiations
on China's accession to the WTO; the multilateral agreements on
information technology, financial services and basic telecommunications;
as well as the NAFTA and Uruguay Round negotiations, the Summit of the
Americas and in Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) initiatives,"
USTR said.

Lund's attorney Mark Flanagan was expected to meet with USTR officials
on Monday to discuss the complaints against her.

Flanagan refused to talk in detail about the case, or even confirm the
meeting on Monday, but others close to the case said the meeting was
expected to go ahead.

"The criminal investigation was closed. The matter is now pending at the
agency and we're hopeful that the agency will also decide to close the
matter favorably," he said.

Lund would not speak on the record about the case. 

-- 
James Love, Director, Knowledge Ecology International
http://www.keionline.org | http://www.twitter.com/jamie_love
Wk: +1.202.332.2670 | US Mobile +1.202.361.3040 | Geneva Mobile +41.76.413.6584





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