These kinds of disclaimers in articles have interested me for years. Here are two from the same piece today:
“A senior U.S. official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to brief the media.”
“A foreign diplomat, likewise speaking on condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to brief the media.”
In other words, people blab who are actually not permitted to do so. Yet they spill the beans.
I realize these may not be just loose lips that could sink ships—sure, maybe this person is a maverick, but then again they may in reality be staff who were indeed “authorized” by org superiors to speak, just not as official spokesmen.
Why would an org do this? To test the waters. To gauge reactions. To preserve org plausible deniability. To distance superiors from any backlash. To plant narratives. That said, please note I am sharing this insight on condition of anonymity because I am not authorized to speak by anyone, at least no one in the Biden Admin.
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