More On Government Tracing Journalists' Calls

(AP / CBS)
ABC News' claim that the government is tracing reporters' calls, first reported yesterday on an ABC News blog, just got a little bit stronger.

Former CIA counterterrorism chief Vincent Cannistraro told the New York Sun that "the FBI is monitoring calls of a number of news organizations as part of this leak investigation. It is going on. It is widespread and it may entail more than those three media outlets."

The three named outlets were ABC News, the New York Times and the Washington Post. "This leak investigation" seems to refer to an FBI investigation of leaks of information about secret CIA prisons.

FBI spokesman Bill Carter told the Sun that the ABC News report was "misleading," but he did not dispute the claim that the FBI had obtained journalists' phone records. "In any case where the records of a private person are sought, they may only be obtained through established legal process," he said.