US newspapers accused of complicity as drone report reopens security debate
New York Times and Washington Post knew about secret drone base in Saudi Arabia but agreed not to disclose it to the public
US news organisations are facing accusations of complicity after it emerged that they bowed to pressure from the Obama administration not to disclose the existence of a secret drone base in Saudi Arabia despite knowing about it for a year.
Amid renewed scrutiny over the Obama administration’s secrecy over its targeted killing programme, media analysts and national security experts said the revelation that some newspapers had co-operated over the drone base had reopened the debate over the balance between freedom of information and national security.
On Tuesday, following Monday’s disclosure by NBC of a leaked Justice Department white paper on the case for its controversial targeted killing programme, the Washington Post revealed it had previously refrained from publishing the base’s location at the behest of the Obama administration over national security concerns.