Hillary Clinton discussed on her private email server at the State Department a nuclear scientist who the Iranian government executed this past week for spying on behalf of the United States.
Shahram Amiri, who worked with the Central Intelligence Agency to collect intelligence on Tehran’s nuclear program, was hanged for treason, Iran’s state-controlled media confirmed Sunday.
Recent Stories in National Security
Iranian judiciary spokesman Gholamhosein Mohseni Ejehi said Amiri "had been linked to our hostile and number one enemy, America, the Great Satan" with "access to the country’s secret and classified information."
Amiri, born in 1977, disappeared in Saudi Arabia during a religious pilgrimage to Mecca in 2009 before resurfacing a year later in the U.S., claiming that the CIA had abducted and tortured him. Two weeks later, Amiri visited the Iranian-interests section at the Pakistani Embassy in Washington, D.C. and demanded to return back to Iran.
Clinton, who was secretary of state at the time, maintained that Amiri had arrived in American "of his own free will."
Ten days before Amiri departed for Tehran, a State Department official emailed Clinton claiming that he had psychological problems, the Associated Press reported.
"Per the subject we discussed, we have a diplomatic, ‘psychological’ issue, not a legal issue," wrote Richard Morningstar, a former State Department special envoy for Eurasian energy. "We should recognize his concerns and frame it in terms of a misunderstanding with no malevolent intent and that we will make sure there is no recurrence. Our person won’t be able to do anything anyway. If he has to leave, so be it."
A separate email from senior Clinton adviser Jake Sullivan touched on the State Department’s concerns about media coverage of Amiri.
"The gentleman … has apparently gone to his country’s interests section because he is unhappy with how much time it has taken to facilitate his departure," Sullivan wrote. "This could lead to problematic news stories in the next 24 hours."
Sen. Tom Cotton (R., Ark.) called Clinton’s decision to transmit details about Amiri across her unsecured system "reckless."
"That goes to show just how reckless and careless her decision was to put that kind of highly classified information on a private server, and I think her judgment is not suited to keep this country safe," Cotton said Sunday on CBS.