Judith Miller hasn't even put on her prison stripes yet, and the repercussions are already being felt. This from Doug Clifton, editor of the Cleveland Plain Dealer:
"As I write this (editorial), two stories of profound importance languish in our hands. The public would be well-served to know them, but both are based on documents leaked to us by people who would face deep trouble for having them leaked. Publishing the stories would almost certainly lead to a leak investigation and the ultimate choice: talk or go to jail. Because talking is not an option and jail is too high a price to pay, these two stories will go untold for now. How many more are out there?" He characterized these two investigative stories as profoundly important and that they would have been of significant interest to the public.
The reporters have stated they are prepared to go to jail. So the operative phrase is "too high a price to pay." Although the editor was referring to jail time (although I'm sure he was hoping readers would read between the lines when he chose those words), the attorneys for the newspaper, and more important, the newspaper's owner, Newhouse Newspapers, spiked these stories fearing financial penalties (and stated they didn't want the reporters to go to jail, but it's really all about the money).