This is a story about what happens when the demands of national security collide with the public’s right to know.
That dilemma is at the heart of the case of James Risen, a Pulitzer-Prize winning investigative reporter for the New York Times.
Risen was the first to break the story about the NSA’s secret wiretapping program that monitored Americans’ phone calls without a court warrant. He’s been subpoenaed to divulge his confidential sources in a separate federal criminal trial. He appealed the subpoena all the way up to the Supreme Court, but the court turned down his petition. Now, if he doesn’t name names, he could go to jail.