Richard Lowry, editor of the conservative National Review, has written a letter protesting the U.S. State Department's "slipshod, deceptive, and, now, even thuggish" treatment of one of its reporters. Richard Mowbray was detained by State Department personnel in an apparent attempt to intimidate him into giving up the identity of a whistleblower who has provided Mowbray with confidential documents about "Visa Express," the controversial policy through which citizens of Saudi Arabia (including three of the 9/11 hijackers) have been able to obtain expedited U.S. visas. According to the Wall Street Journal, Mowbray's harassment "is of a piece with State's refusal to press Saudi Arabia on the plight of American women held in that country against their will. State's instinct is always to attack Americans who raise questions, instead of pressuring the Saudis on behalf of U.S. interests."
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