DOD approves book from ex-Mattis speechwriter

Guy Snodgrass's attorney confirm Pentagon gives OK

(CNN) - The Defense Department cleared an insider account of the Trump Pentagon from Secretary James Mattis' former speechwriter on Wednesday, averting a courtroom battle over accusations that the Defense Department had held up the book's release to benefit the former secretary.

Attorneys for Guy Snodgrass, a former Navy pilot who helmed Mattis' communications team during his tenure at the Pentagon, confirmed to CNN that the Pentagon's classification office had given the green light to their client's manuscript, "Holding the Line: Inside the Pentagon with General Mattis."

"The book has been cleared for release subject to minor redactions," Brad Moss, an attorney for Snodgrass, told CNN over the phone.

In a brief letter dated Wednesday, the chief of the Pentagon's classification office notified Snodgrass that the department had inserted several "re-written" chapters in place of the author's original words.

Snodgrass sued the department last month, accusing Pentagon officials of breaching his First Amendment rights. The complaint cited numerous sources who claimed the delay was retribution for violating an unspoken loyalty oath to the secretary. The filing also accused Mattis of "complicity" in blocking the book from publication, in part so the former secretary's own book would hit bookstore shelves first.

The resolution followed a fireworks-free hearing in federal court Monday at which Snodgrass and Justice Department officials had indicated they were close to resolving the issue.

The lawsuit detailed a contentious back-and-forth between Snodgrass and Pentagon officials, including stern warnings from department lawyers that the former speechwriter had neglected his "duty to protect the confidences of Secretary Mattis."

According to the complaint, word of the book provoked an email from Mattis himself, in which the former secretary wrote that his onetime aide appears "to be violating the trust" of senior Pentagon officials that he would keep private deliberations private.

What events the books retells remain closely guarded inside the Pentagon. Snodgrass' attorneys said they have not seen their client's manuscript, as is typical in the classification review process.

DISCLAIMER FOR COMMENTS: The views expressed by public comments are not those of this company or its affiliated companies. Please note by clicking on "Post" you acknowledge that you have read the TERMS OF USE  and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Your comments may be used on air. Be polite. Inappropriate posts or posts containing offsite links, images, inappropriate language, or memes may be removed by the moderator.  Job listings and similar posts are likely automated SPAM messages from Facebook and are not placed by WFMZ-TV.

Allentown, PA 18102




  • 0%

This Week's Circulars

Latest from the newsroom