Anybody familiar with government classification experience knows that classification can be a transient thing. Take this document stamped secret. It was recently sold at a public auction. Violation of the law? Nope.
In 1942 there may have been a good reason to classify this document as SECRET. I suspect that VE/VJ day rendered that reason moot. During a housecleaning of government files, it is likely that Lt. Brewster’s orders were declassified. That doesn’t mean that the government chased down every copy to change the designation. Just because the paper, in hand, is labeled secret doesn’t mean that it is. It also doesn’t mean that it is okay to disregard the designation. At best, a document label secret should be protected until its true status is established. Once it is declassified then it is fair game.
Here’s what somebody smarter than me has to say about the raid at Mar-a-Lago. From Power Line:
The classification status of the documents remains to be seen. Another issue to be addressed is the security of classified documents. My understanding is that the documents were in a locked room. The locked room was in a building that was controlled via video and alarm monitoring. In addition, the United States Secret Service approved the physical security and provided armed security for Trump’s residence within Mar-a-Lago. Don’t forget that government entities in the form of the National Archives reviewed and released the documents to Trump and the GSA arranged transport.
I got this nifty stamp and I’m busy marking all of my documents. In the interests of security, eat this blog entry after reading. Can’t be too careful.