Letter to the Editor: Kent Doesn’t Know What He’s Talking About on Mar-a-Lago Raid


Those with strong memories may recall that on the very first day of the Trump presidency, Jan. 20, 2017, the new administration claimed despite all eyewitness and photographic evidence that the Trump inauguration crowd was the largest in history.

But not only did the Trump presidency begin with a  lie, its mendacity has moldered and metastasized ever since.

The security of military and intelligence data always has been a top concern of the nation-state. The compromise of such data often has been of enormous consequence.

During the Civil War, for example, two Union infantrymen accidentally discovered a copy of Confederate battle plans, Special Order 191, wrapped around a cache of three cigars.  Although slow and overly cautious, as usual, Union commander General George McClellan was able to use this information to stymie General Robert E. Lee's invasion of the North at the epochal Battle of Antietam on Sept. 17, 1862, the bloodiest day of the entire war.

During World War II, at a secret facility at Bletchley Park, England, Ultra cryptographers successfully hacked the German Enigma military code transmitter, allowing Winston Churchill to boast in private that he knew Hitler's orders to Rommel before Rommel. Nazi neglect of its security apparatus undoubtedly contributed to the successful Allied campaigns in Egypt, Tunisia, Sicily and Normandy, and may even have swung the balance.

But now we find that when Donald Trump left the White House, he hauled off crates of highly classified information to his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida. Some of these documents were labeled "TS/SCI," an abbreviation for "top secret/sensitive compartmented information," the highest classification extant. 

Without exception, such documents are meant to be read only in secure government facilities and should never be moved from such facilities without clear and urgent cause. To do so is an irrefutable violation of the Espionage Act and of other federal laws as well, and indisputably opens the door to many forms of malfeasance, including the illegal transfer of such information to foreign powers and treason.

Yet on Aug. 12, 3rd District congressional candidate Joe Kent posted that "the FBI leaked the nuclear documents nonsense to seed yet another narrative based on fake information that will be way too classified for them to release, we'll just have to trust the 'vanguards of democracy' w/another kangaroo court."

This is just garbage.  Kent is a military veteran, as was his wife, Shannon Kent, a cryptologic technician who died in combat in Syria during the Trump presidency.

Clearly, this is a sensitive matter, but Kent, of all people, should know better.

Joe Kent not only is a doormat for Donald Trump, he simply does not know what he is talking about.


Joseph Tipler