The Pentagon reportedly suffered a security breach that occurred over a sizable period of time. According to the investigative website Bellingcat, classified documents that could endanger both the United States’ national security and the lives of many people became available on Discord, a platform popularly known for gaming. According to reports, the classified documents reportedly became available on Discord as early as January 2023. Some of the documents appeared on the site around March 2023.
The documents leaked are visible in pictures and appear creased in some images. They are marked “Top Secret” and NOFORN, which stands for Not Releasable to Foreign Nationals.
Questions have been raised about the authenticity of the documents leaked. However, the content of the documents has raised more questions regarding the United States’ conduct regarding nations considered both friend and foe. The documents leaked showed that the U.S. was spying on both allies and enemies, a possibility that has been denied by both the U.S. and foreign parties.
The leaked documents revealed that the U.S. was spying on Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and his communication with military officials. Information leaked in some documents alleges that Ukraine’s air defense has substantial weaknesses, which is knowledge that, if accurate, could pose a danger to many.
The documents also show that U.S. personnel have infiltrated the Wagner Group, a military group with significant links to the Russian political leadership. The leak of this information could compromise individuals carrying out this work.
A document that is allegedly from the CIA showed that Mossad, the Israeli intelligence agency, had intentionally sparked anti-government protests in Israel. The government of Israel has since denied these claims.
The leaked documents covered a wide scope of national and international information, with some leaked files warning of a possible nuclear attack by Russia. The U.S. has promised to thoroughly investigate the matter. “They were somewhere on the web, and where exactly, and who had access at that point, we don’t know. We simply don’t know,” Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin proclaimed at a press event. “We will continue to investigate and turn over every rock until we find the source of this and the extent of it.”
At the time of writing, it had not been discovered who was responsible for the leak.