Among the government secrets leaked to the media in recent months were reports on US cyber warfare against Iran, procedures for targeting militants for drone attacks and the existence of a double agent who penetrated a militant group in Yemen.
Republicans have also criticized the administration for disclosing details of the Navy SEAL team that killed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in a raid on his Pakistan hideout last year.
"Our intelligence people say this is the worst breach they have ever seen," Senator John McCain, senior Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, said in an interview on CNN's "State of the Union" program.
"It's very clear that this information had to come from this administration. It could not have come from anywhere else," Senator McCain said. "This needs a Special Counsel, someone who is very independent of the Justice Department's chief, Eric Holder."
Government leaks of classified data are a staple of Washington political life, this issue has taken on a special significance ahead of the 6 November presidential election, with some Republicans charging that the leaks look to be calculated to boost the President Barack Obama's re-election prospects aka self serving.
He said his panel conducted a preliminary review of the "Parade of Leaks" that raise serious questions.
Many are asking the question, me included, how can you have the US attorney, assigned through the Attorney General, investigate something that is at the highest levels in the executive branch? Not likely to give an substantial result or report.
Senator McCain ratcheted up the pressure by calling for a probe by a prosecutor with special powers, independent of Eric Holder's Justice Department.
"I have great respect for the 2 individuals that were appointed. But this, if it is, and it certainly is, the most egregious breach of intelligence in anybody's memory, that certainly requires a Special Counsel who is completely independent, someone with credibility ...," Senator McCain said Sunday on CNN.
Paul A. Ebeling, Jnr.
Paul A. Ebeling, Jnr. writes and publishes The Red Roadmaster's Technical Report on the US Major Market Indices, a weekly, highly-regarded financial market letter, read by opinion makers, business leaders and organizations around the world.
Paul A. Ebeling, Jnr has studied the global financial and stock markets since 1984, following a successful business career that included investment banking, and market and business analysis. He is a specialist in equities/commodities, and an accomplished chart reader who advises technicians with regard to Major Indices Resistance/Support Levels.
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