Reports: Air Force Blocks NYT, Other News Sites Over Wikileaks

FABIANO/SIPA/Newscom
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The Air Force is now blocking the web sites of the New York Times, the Guardian, and other news outlets that have posted diplomatic cables leaked by Wikileaks.

According to the Wall Street Journal and Reuters, the Air Force ordered the sites blocked from personnel computers last month. An Air Force spokeswoman told Reuters that the Air Force “routinely blocks Air Force network access to websites hosting inappropriate materials or malware (malicious software) and this includes any website that hosts classified materials and those that are released by WikiLeaks.”

She said 25 sites have been blocked.The move goes further than those made by other branches of the armed services and the Pentagon, which has advised servicemembers to avoid looking at the Wikileaks documents on military computers.

As TPM has reported, civilian federal agencies have also instructed employees not to read the cables and, in some cases, blocked the Wikileaks site.

According to the Journal, the message, “ACCESS DENIED. Internet Usage is Logged & Monitored,” appears when servicemembers try to access the blocked sites. The message also warns that personnel looking at unauthorized sites may be punished.

The Air Force had told personnel in August not to go to the Wikileaks site or download any of the cables, according to a memo obtained by TPM.

[Additional reporting by Ryan J. Reilly]

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