Fake Twitter accounts can be hilarious and, if you work in the White House, get you fired.
Jofi Joseph, a senior National Security Council staffer, was sent packing after the Obama administration figured out they were employing one of their harshest and best-informed critics.
Joseph was in the major leagues of politics, working on negotiations with Iran over their nuclear program and “a range of multilateral arms control treaties.”
He had served in the Obama administration since 2009, but it was his @NatSecWonk Twitter account that made people talk.
Joseph started texting hand grenades in 2011 and soon became a darling of the media.
The demise of his Twitter account was reason enough for Foreign Policy magazine to pen something of a love letter.
“Like a sniper in his hide, NatSecWonk delivered blows from his or her darkened perch. Anyone in the media, government, or think-tank world was fair game. But within the Beltway, NatSecWonk was considered a valuable source of information,” wrote Foreign Policy.
Joseph didn’t hold back. To sum up White House staffing issues during Obama’s second term he wrote, “Growing problem for the Administration — too many 1st term holdovers not getting the hint that it’s time to move on and get the [bleep] out.”
He pointed out that Obama sidestepped Secretary of State John Kerry on major foreign policy issues: “That Obama only called Kerry/Hagel AFTER he made decision with his WH aides on going to [Congress about use of military force in Syria] underscores how all foreign policy is WH-based.”
He often got personal: “When will someone do us the favor of getting rid of Sarah Palin and the rest of her white trash family?”
Or, he pointed out what he called idiocy: “Anyone else notice the irony of @BrookingsInst holding a roundtable this weekend on Global Poverty in Aspen, CO? Good grief.”
Politico says the White House set out to find the person behind @NatSecWonk after tweets repeatedly cast doubts on the administration’s account of the Sept. 11, 2012, attack in Benghazi.
Federal investigators believe Joseph may also be behind another Twitter account, @dchobbyist, which, according to Politico, includes racier tweets about sexual encounters, escort services – and the inner workings of the State Department. That account is “protected” so I can’t tell you what is going on in there.
Joseph, who no longer has a top security clearance, apologized for his behavior on Politico: “What started out as an intended parody account of DC culture developed over time into a series of inappropriate and mean-spirited comments. I bear complete responsibility for this affair and I sincerely apologize to everyone I insulted.”
He should also apologize for moonlighting. I like Twitter as much as anyone, but it seems he may have distracted himself and others from conducting serious business.
Oh well, maybe The Daily Show needs a social media director?
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