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WikiLeaks: When is it 'right' to leak national security secrets?

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Are the opportunities for leaks of classified information ballooning, given that the military and America's 16 intelligence agencies are classifying more information and that, according to a Washington Post investigative report, more than 854,000 Americans have clearance for top-secret work?

Is the likelihood rising that someone with access to information will feel a moral obligation to "get the truth out" – as the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq grind on and as many debate controversial practices such as waterboarding and secret prisons?

The existence of WikiLeaks, of thumb drives, and of thousands of young soldiers recruited for the wars every year supports answering that question with a "yes."

"The classifying of information has gone way up – it's doubled or tripled since these wars began – and then we have nearly nine years and counting of Afghanistan and Iraq and the controversial practices associated with them," says Coleen Rowley, a former field-office legal counsel for the Federal Bureau of Investigation who blew the whistle to FBI Director Robert Mueller about information lapses prior to 9/11 – and saw her career stall.

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