Former NSA Chief’s Interview ‘Leaked’ Online

Michael Hayden's off-the-record phone interviews on train live-tweeted by snooping passenger

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Gary Cameron / Reuters

Retired U.S. Air Force General and former NSA chief Michael Hayden is pictured in his office in Washington May 1, 2013.

Correction appended

After managing one of the largest cyber intelligence operations in the world, former National Security Agency boss Michael Hayden experienced how the other half lives while aboard the Amtrak Acela commuter train.

As Hayden provided unnamed reporters with background interviews, fellow passenger and former director Tom Matzzie took the opportunity to live-tweet the exchange.

(MORE: Germany, Brazil Take NSA Spying Gripes to U.N.)

According to a report in Salon, Hayden spoke about America’s use of black sites and rendition. The erstwhile spy chief’s comments came just hours after news broke that the U.S. government had been monitoring the communications of 35 world leaders.

Correction: The original version of this article incorrectly described Hayden’s conversations with reporters and has been amended




So when we see Calabresi's report, is it still going to be sourced to a "former administration official"?

Personally I find this hilarious.  Welcome to the world of ubiquitous communication devices.


"Hayden provided unnamed reporters with off-the-record phone interviews"

Nothing about this part?

On Acela: Michael Hayden was talking to Massimo Calabresi at TIME I am pretty sure. Does he tweet?

Does the author know anyone at TIME he could ask?


This circumspect individual was the head of the NSA. Comforting.


@PaulDirks Offering valuable insights like "We were great, and Obama stinks"

Good thing he is on background.