The American Society of Newspaper Editors (ASNE) has asked Central Intelligence Director George J. Tenet to publicly declare that none of his agents pretend to be journalists.
In a letter sent to Tenet today, ASNE President and Star Tribune Editor Tim J. McGuire cited the murder of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl. “We know that Mr. Pearl was not a CIA operative, and we know that the Agency issued a clear denial of any relationship,” McGuire wrote in a letter also signed by Houston Chronicle Executive Editor Tony W. Pederson, chair of ASNE’s international committee. “Still, Mr. Pearl was accused by his abductors of being an agent.”
The letter asks the CIA “to declare unequivocally as policy that it will not use journalist covers for its agents” and to make it official policy that such covers will never be used.
For the full text of the letter, visit http://www.asne.org/index.cfm?ID=3399.