Mark Esper: ‘Damaging’ leak shows too many people have access to classified intel

Mark Esper: ‘Damaging’ leak shows too many people have access to classified intel

Former Defense Secretary Mark Esper voices concerns after a 21-year-old National Guardsman leaked sensitive materials. #FoxNews

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Let's bring in Former Defense secretary Mark esper and I saw you yesterday start Talking a little bit about your concern And that he had access to final products Could you explain that here Yeah like like most people I don't Understand why a 21 year old national Guardsman had access to uh some of the The most highly kept secrets in the United States and in particular finished Products from The Joint staff or Finished products from the CIA Operations center I just don't know why He would have access to those frankly I Don't know why the ma the Massachusetts National Guard needs access to those Things either A fair point on that we talked about That last hour with the former head of Dni John Radcliffe just a question on This we've heard so many experts over The past 24 hours say there must be a Need to know I I think we can all agree On that but if he's working in I.T Um You know you go looking for young people When you're looking for people to do Coding or to fix your technology Um I get there must be a better system Before you grant someone access to that And I the the question is what's the Solution after you think about this Today

Well I'm as befuddled as you are I Understand the need for a clearance in Order to work on the equipment that's Apparently what he did he was a Communications specialist who set things Up he did it work there is a need to Have a clearance for that but there's Not a need for him to have access to the Information on that system let alone Finish products from The Joint staff and CIA and look I have two immediate Concerns right now that we need to find Out through the FBI and through the Investigators is what is the scope and Skill of the release so that we can get A better handle on that and close up all The everything that's open and then Secondly uh why did he do it and is Anybody else involved that's what we Need to know right now and then we can Start kind of closing these doors DOD Has a problem of not just over Classification but in this case over Distribution there's too many people That have access to this information That should really only be for the Highest levels of our government and we Need to get that under control so he's Doing Court in in this hour Um but the other thing is not only did They leak the information did he leak The information uh that is embarrassing But we also found out something here is Call for number five Joe Rogan in the

Washington Post reporting that the most Shocking Intel leak reveals new Chinese Military advances including Hypersonic Missiles what do we need to know here Yeah look it's not just embarrassing but It's damaging we've hurt our Ukrainian Partners with regard to their current Operations and possibly their future Operations against Russia as they Ponder A counter-offensive we've likely burned Our access to the Russian military and Russian intelligence systems that was Giving us great insights with regard to Where they are today in the and in the Future and to your reference Dana with The Chinese we may have exposed those Sources at least the techniques as well And so those are all very damaging which Is why I was kind of surprised that President Biden said yesterday that he Didn't see any contemporaneous harm or Something like that coming out of this But this is very damaging not just to Our operations but but to our Relationships with our allies as well I Should make a point it was Josh Rogan in The Washington Post not Joe Rogan of Course who has his own podcast yeah I Just want to clear up one thing that you Said a moment ago about the Air National Guard in Massachusetts and we put this Question to John Radcliffe last hour Why is it that way Well you know sometimes the National

Guard units of the National Guard are Called up to perform specific Missions At a federal level I think we need to Find out whether this happened in this Case but otherwise I just don't see the Need for the for the Massachusetts National Guard to have access to Finished products right that's the issue Sorry that's the interruption here but Yeah just to be clear on this if Massachusetts has it the other 49 states Have it Possibly that's my concern is again Finished products like this should only Be for the people at the highest levels Of The theater of operations things like That not not down to the reserves and The guard and young Airmen and young Soldiers out there they just don't have A need to know and that's the issue the Question is the need to know and clearly Again there's over distribution of these And over access to this highly Classified intelligence one thing I also Wanted to ask you about is you said is Anybody else involved That could be that that opens up a range Of possibilities right and I think There's a lot of skepticism that the Government is being Folsom with what we Know about this individual but was this Individual being paid by somebody else In order to do this or what happened to

Change that is that what you mean Yeah I mean on the most dangerous and Most concerning end is is there some Type of foreign influence that was Prodding him or asking him for Information and then you ask yourself Was if not that was there somebody else Another colleague in the unit aware and Then you may have a negligence issue From the chain of command where was he Not properly supervised or was he given Access the information he wasn't or Shouldn't have been allowed access to so I I think we got to pull those threads But I'm most concerned about the most The most dangerous one now is is there Some type of outside influence was Involved here because we need to track That down quickly and make sure that we Close the doors Really good points Mark esper thanks for Coming on today thank you good to have You on I'm Steve Ducey I'm Brian Kilmeade and I'm Ainsley Earhart and Click here to subscribe to the Fox News YouTube page to catch our hottest Interviews and most compelling analysis

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