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Secretaries of state have had private contacts since the job was created, so it's a mistake to get too indignant about Hillary Clinton's email exchanges about Libya with her longtime friend, Sidney Blumenthal. Still, these messages offer some useful insights about the court politics of Washington, and the way policymaking can be overwhelmed by trivia and personal puffery.The central characters in this palace intrigue are Clinton and Blumenthal, her Svengali-like confidant since the 1990s who is referred to in these documents as "HRC friend," "HRC Contact" and "Friend of S [for Secretary]".Blumenthal's missives on Libya appear to be mostly repackaged information from a former CIA officer named Tyler Drumheller, who is now part of Alphom Group, one of the many consulting firms in Washington that employ former spooks to harvest their old contacts for salable information.That's good, given that it was the CIA's job to report on Libya, for real.But the Blumenthal papers were taken seriously at State.
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