The Trump administration won’t release two emails from Hillary Clinton’s private account concerning the 2012 Benghazi attacks, a federal judge has confirmed, citing that a “significant risk to national security” was at stake should the emails be released, The Hill reports.
“In light of the substantiation of the important national security interests at stake, it does not appear that the agency’s failure to invoke Exemption 1 [for classified information] was part of an effort to gain tactical advantage, but rather, it stemmed from inefficiencies at and extraordinary burdens placed upon defendant’s FOIA unit,” U.S. District Court Judge Amy Berman Jackson wrote in her 12-page ruling.
After originally ruling that the two emails, titled “Quick Summary of POTUS Calls to Presidents of Libya and Egypt,” should be released to the conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch, Jackson changed her mind when the State Department stated that it made a mistake by not originally marking the emails as classified.
Watchdogs Judicial Watch criticized the Trump administration earlier in the week for not releasing the emails, accusing Trump of going back on his promise to “drain the swamp.” The two emails are dated two days after the 2012 attack that killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three others.
Judicial Watch chief Tom Fitton stated that they consider the decision “disheartening”, adding that “an administration elected to ‘drain the swamp’ is stalling the release of documents to protect Hillary Clinton and the Obama administration.”