Was CBS Bureau Chief an FBI Informant?
Chris Isham denies being snitch at time of Oklahoma City bombing
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 6, 2011 8:11 AM CDT
This file photo shows the north side of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma and the damage caused by a car bomb explosion, 19 April 1995.    (Getty Images)

(Newser) – It's a game of was he or wasn't he: An unnamed ABC News journalist was listed as an FBI informant at the time of the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995, according to a now-declassified memo unearthed by the Center for Public Integrity. And Gawker has tracked down his name: Chris Isham. The CBS Washington bureau chief, who was ABC News’ chief of investigative projects at the time, reportedly passed on a tip to the FBI and even named his source. The tip—that Iraqi forces were behind the bombing and more attacks were imminent in LA and Houston—turned out to be a dud.

The source in question, ABC consultant/former CIA officer Vincent Cannistraro, says he turned the information over to the FBI independently of Isham and tells the New York Times that he doesn't feel that Isham acted improperly, though he would have preferred it if Isham had notified him that the tip had been passed to the FBI. But Isham says it just isn't so: The FBI's description of their relationship is "outrageous and untrue,” he said in a statement to Politico. “Like every investigative reporter, my job for 25 years has been to check out information and tips from sources. In the heat of the Oklahoma City bombing, it would not be unusual for me or any journalist to run information by a source within the FBI for confirmation or to notify authorities about a pending terrorist attack."