The US Army Is Blocking Staff Access to the Guardian Website

After getting upset about the fact that Guardian has been breaking news and leaking classified documents about the many and varied spying programs of the NSA, the US Army has decided to block access to the news site among its employees.

An Army spokesperson told the Monterey Herald "some access to press coverage and online content about the NSA leaks" was being filtered as part of routine "network hygiene". He continued, pointing out that there are "strict policies and directives in place regarding protecting and handling classified information", suggesting the block was in place to limit unauthorized disclosures of classified material.

If the block sounds familiar, that's because it is: in 2010, the Army blocked the New York Times and Guardian during the US diplomatic cables leak by Assange et al. The reasoning? Well, at the time the White House insisted that "classified information, whether or not already posted on public websites or disclosed to the media, remains classified, and must be treated as such by federal employees and contractors."

That seems slightly farcical when you consider that the classified documents released by the Guardian are now freely available online. But rules are rules, and it seems the Army is doing the only thing it can to stop its staff coming across the documents. There are no plans to block website from the general public. [Monterey Herald via Verge]