Chris Hayes called some critics of Glenn Greenwald out for hypocrisy on Thursday night, saying that those who allege his leaks endangered national security have not been as critical of other leaks that advance the government's agenda.
Rep. Peter King called for Greenwald's prosecution after the journalist published top-secret information about the NSA's surveillance programs leaked to him by Edward Snowden. Other critics have alleged that the leaks alerted terrorists to national security tactics, which would then allow them to change their tactics in order to avoid detection.
On Thursday, Hayes made note of Barbara Starr's report for CNN, which contained leaks from administration and intelligence officials. Those sources said that terrorists are changing their communication methods in light of the Snowden leaks.
The report, Hayes said, supported allegations against Greenwald, but also revealed more about what the United States knows about terrorists than did Snowden's leaks. "And, yet, somehow I have not heard members of Congress calling Barbara Starr's reporting dangerous, or pushing for her prosecution the way some did when Glenn Greenwald reported the Edward Snowden leaks," he said.
Hayes continued, "It is a problem for this country and for the functioning of our democracy when Glenn Greenwald's leaked reporting is treated so differently than Barbara Starr. When, with Glenn Greenwald, they're not designed to advanced Pentagon's agenda, then we have calls for prosecution. When they are, as with the Barbara Starr reporting, radio silence."
The Huffington Post's Michael Calderone raised a similar point on Thursday, in a piece about leaks from government officials that support the allegations against Greenwald. "But reporters also need to scrutinize claims that officials are only willing to make anonymously about national security, especially at a moment when they clearly bolster the government’s case against the 30-year-old fugitive being tried in the court of public opinion," he wrote.
For his part, Greenwald criticized Starr's report on Wednesday, calling it "mindless, government-subservient stenographic journalism."