An email that Hillary Clinton forwarded to her State Department aides as secretary of state that allegedly contained the name of a CIA source in Libya could have had “lethal” consequences, a former CIA official said Monday.
“That’s the holiest of holies inside CIA — the true identity of a secret source,” 34-year CIA veteran John Rizzo said during an interview on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”
The “Morning Joe” panel was discussing a recent story from Yahoo Politics’ reporter Michael Isikoff about an email that the State Department recently turned over to the House Select Committee on Benghazi that chairman Trey Gowdy says contains the true name of a CIA source who was working in Libya during the height of the civil war there. (RELATED: Clinton Email Naming Top CIA Source Called ‘Unauthorized Disclosure Of Sensitive Information’)
“Tyler spoke to a colleague currently at CIA, who told him the agency had been dependent for intelligence from [redacted due to sources and methods],” reads an email that longtime Clinton friend Sidney Blumenthal sent her on March 18, 2011.
Clinton forwarded the email, which Gowdy says contains the CIA asset’s name, to some of her aides at the State Department. The email was one of 1,500 that the State Department gave Gowdy’s committee several weeks ago. About 500 of those were sent between Clinton and Blumenthal.
The “Tyler” mentioned in the email is Tyler Drumheller, a former chief of the CIA’s European unit. Drumheller and Blumenthal were involved in a North Carolina-based company called Osprey Global Solutions. Drumheller provided Blumenthal with geopolitical intelligence, which he in turn often forwarded to Clinton. Many of those intelligence reports appear to advance Osprey’s business interests.
“Even inside CIA, in internal emails or cables, or even conversations you never mention, you never talk about the true name of a human source,” Rizzo said Monday. “You use a pseudonym. I mean, honestly, it was quite stunning.”
Asked what the implications are for such an email being sent over an unsecure email network like Clinton’s, Rizzo said, “it could be literally lethal.”
“Who has access to that? Who is trying to hack into it? If this is a foreign-based source, living in Libya let’s say … you get outed as a CIA source over there, you’re a dead man. So it couldn’t be more serious,” he added.
While Clinton has claimed that there is “no evidence” that her private email server was hacked, it recently came to light that international hackers attempted to infiltrate her email account as well as her server.
Many computer security experts have said that a sophisticated hack by Russian of Chinese hackers could easily go unnoticed by the victim.
FBI director James Comey confirmed earlier this month that the agency is investigating the security of Clinton’s server. (RELATED: FBI Is Investigating The Security Of Hillary’s Email Server)
During an interview with “60 Minutes” that aired Sunday, President Barack Obama said that he does not believe that Clinton’s off-the-books email system posed a national security threat. He did call it a “mistake,” however. (RELATED: Obama Says Hillary’s Email Use Was ‘A Mistake’)
Yahoo’s Isikoff also weighed in on the implications of the email during Monday’s segment.
“In some senses this is maybe the single most problematic email exchange we’ve seen with Hillary Clinton yet of all the emails that have been released,” he said. “On its face it would appear to be evidence of the commission of a federal crime, by somebody, not Hillary Clinton.