Source of Leak to Makers of Zero Dark Thirty Investigated
Vickers rumored to succeed Petraeus
By Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff
Posted Dec 18, 2012 9:14 AM CST
Michael G. Vickers speaks with The Associated Press during an interview at the Pentagon in this Nov. 16, 2007 file photo.   (AP Photo/Haraz N. Ghanbari)

(Newser) – Michael Vickers, a senior Defense official rumored to be a possible replacement for David Petraeus at the CIA, has been referred to the Justice Department after Pentagon investigators concluded that he leaked restricted information about the Osama bin Laden raid to Zero Dark Thirty filmmakers, two senior US officials tell the Miami Herald. Vickers, the Pentagon's undersecretary for Intelligence, gave filmmakers the name of a member of SEAL Team Six who helped plan the raid—though not, ABC News reports, one of the SEALs who actually conducted the raid. But so far, the Justice Department has declined to prosecute.

Vickers is Leon Panetta's top intelligence adviser, and it's not clear whether the matter will hurt his shot at the CIA directorship. One senior defense official says it's simply "a routine practice" to refer issues like this to the Justice Department, and adds that Pentagon officials doubt the case "will amount to anything," particularly since a 2011 conversation in which Vickers talked to the filmmakers about the SEAL, mentioning him by name, was deemed unclassified by the Pentagon. The Pentagon says its investigation into possible leaks related to the film is still ongoing. It was launched at Rep. Peter King's request, but his office hadn't been notified of any findings by this week. King says that "raises the question" of whether the delay was for political reasons. The Herald suggests it may have been an effort not to hurt the president's re-election chances, while ABC suggests it was to avoid embarrassing Panetta before he retires.

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Showing 3 of 7 comments
right2dave
Dec 18, 2012 1:18 PM CST
The current administration is like a sieve. Who's running that operation anyway?
reallybig
Dec 18, 2012 12:55 PM CST
GOOD LUCK on that, the CIA still hasn't found those weapons of mass destruction that Iraq had, and WHO killed the Libyan US Ambassador, and now want to find out WHO leaked the phony heroic fabrication of the Bin Laden assassination? -------- REALLY?
finkster
Dec 18, 2012 9:53 AM CST
No matter this controversy...it will help the film makers of Zero Dark Thirty With publicity like this...they'll be laughing all the way to the bank...