The official says the political appointment interfered with the review of Bolton’s book, apparently with the aim of blocking publication.


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On Bolton

John von Bolton during his 2018 trip to Ukraine as National Security Advisor. Photo by paparazzza /,

The more or less politically trained political reviewer was instructed to review the book by former National Security Adviser John von Bolton, although a career official said the book was ready for publication, according to court documents.

Career Officer Ellen Knight said the second review was used by the White House to block the publication of the book. The room where it happened, His views were expressed a Letter of September 22 filed in court և was written by his lawyer Kenneth Weinstein by Davis Polk որդ Wardwell. In: New York Times: has coverage.

The political appointee who reviewed the book was Michael Ellis, and Devin Nunes, a Republican in California. During the period under discussion, Ellis was a legal adviser to the National Security Council and then Senior Director of NSC Intelligence. Knight was Chief Executive Officer of the National Security Council.

Knight was initially unaware that Ellis was conducting the inspection, but was initially told that the cleaning delays were due to COVID-19. He conducted the review from May 2 to June 9, then underwent training on how to conduct classified reviews.

The letter states that Knight is concerned about the politicization of the pre-publication review process, as authors who lose credibility in the process will find ways to publish or publish their work without reviewing it.

Knight said that his team reviewed Bolton’s book when they received it on December 30, 2019.

book cover

“After the first reading,” the letter reads, “it was clear to Ms. Knight that the manuscript contained a wealth of classified information that would require considerable effort to publish. The subsequent review eventually became the most intensive process of reviewing the last publication of the last memory in the NSC. ”

On January 6, the Legal Office of the National Security Council requested a copy of the case file. Then it “immediately started playing, which, in his experience, played a huge role in the review process.”

For example, Charles Cooper, Bolton’s lawyer, once asked Knight’s staff to prioritize the Ukrainian chapter of his book to make it available to the public during President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial. Alice instructed Knight to temporarily refuse any response.

The NSC Legal Office monitored correspondence between Bolton հետ and his lawyer, Charles Cooper, and instructed Knight to use the telephone, not the other. The mail when he spoke to the office about his contacts with Bolton և Cooper.

Knight said his team “scrutinized” the information they thought was classified, then conducted “countless hours of research” to see if it was already available to the public. The team’s concerns led to a four-month review process with Bolton, which was “rude and demanding” but committed to cooperating in the review.

Knight said all his concerns had been resolved, and the review process ended on April 27. The next day, Knight contacted the National Security Council Legal Office to share his findings. Knight was instructed to stand by and tell Bolton that the review process was “ongoing.”

Knight said Ellis’s review did not consider whether classified items were already part of the public record. Instead, Ellis revised the book as if it were a government document subject to classification.

Although Knight was pressured not to agree to Ellis’ review as a difference of opinion, this was not the case, he said.

Instead, it was “a difference between the publication review process, which was carried out to create a published manuscript, and the classification review process, which was carried out to block publication,” the letter said.

Knight refused to sign the statement, which would be used by the government in court.

The Ministry of Justice presented it to the court its trial on June 17. Government: sought to delay publication The book և instruction, which puts constructive confidence in any profit received as a result of its dissemination.

U.S. District Judge Royce Lambert refused to block publication in June, noting that more than 200,000 copies of the book had already been shipped.

Lambert added that he was reviewing the government’s secret declarations and that Bolton “probably endangered national security by leaking classified information”. Lambert said Bolton could have sued the government over its dissatisfaction with the review process, rather than waiving it until the conclusion.

The Bolton book reported that President Donald Trump was seeking the approval or approval of many authoritarian leaders, and that Trump had offered to end criminal investigations by some companies in favor of those leaders.

“Initiative seemed to be an obstacle to justice as a lifeline we could not accept,” Bolton wrote.

Knight said that he does not participate in lawsuits, does not dispute the actions of all the lawyers with whom he has cooperated. He does not equate Bolton with his decision to publish a book, “except in accordance with his constitutional right to do so.”

But he did raise concerns about Bolton’s motion to dismiss in court. The letter states that Bolton wanted to investigate whether the White House had acted in good faith or in conducting a review of the bad publication. The government argues that it does not matter whether the White House acted in good faith, so there should be no investigation into the case.

“If the government is overwhelmed by the argument, the court will eventually deny the public a full understanding of how the pre-publication review of Ambassador Bolton’s book was conducted,” the letter said.

Knight’s work was a biennial detail that was due to be completed in August 2020. He was promised that he would then become a salaried employee who would remain on the National Security Council during various administrations. Then he was told that there was no way for him in the NSC.

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