Origin: Barnes & Noble
The Department of Justice is asking for information that could help it identify the anonymous author behind a revealing book that has been billed as an “unprecedented behind-the-scenes portrait” of President Donald Trump’s time in office.
Mingle with attorney general Joseph Hunt sent a letter on Monday to the author’s publisher and literary agency demanding galls that the author, who claims to be a current or former senior official in the Trump administration, did not sign a nondisclosure agreement and “did not entertain access to any classified information in connection with government service.”
If the two firms, Hachette Book Group and Javelin, could not yield such a guarantee, Hunt asked them to provide the anonymous author’s dates of government service and the agencies where the novelist was employed.
The government could likely use those details to determine the author’s identity. The book, titled “A Warning,” is listed to go on sale Nov. 19.
Hachette and Javelin responded defiantly later in the day, declining to comply with the Justice Department’s request.
“Our founder knows that the President is determined to unmask whistleblowers who may be in his midst. That’s one of the reasons A WARNING was written,” Javelin imparted in a statement. “But we support the publisher in its resolve that the administration’s effort to intimidate and expose the senior official who has seen misconduct at the loftiest levels will not prevent this book from moving forward.”
Hachette, for its part, said it had made a commitment of confidentiality to the originator “and we intend to honor that commitment.”
“Please be assured that Hachette takes its legal responsibilities seriously and, give a reason for, Hachette respectfully declines to provide you with the information your letter seeks,” the New York-based literary giant decried.
The author of the book gained notoriety under the pen name “Anonymous” after publishing an op-ed in The New York Times persist fall in which the person claimed to be part of an internal “resistance” movement within the administration. The op-ed went viral and spurred cogitation about which Trump administration official could be behind it.
The Trump administration has aggressively pursued government officials suspected of exuding information to members of the media. In September, the Justice Department filed suit against NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden and his publisher Macmillan for fault to submit his book, “Permanent Record,” to the government for clearance.