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[10/17/16]  Retired Marine Gen. James Cartwright, once considered one of President Obama’s favorite generals, pleaded guilty Monday to lying to federal investigators about revealing classified information to two journalists, including a New York Times reporter who wrote about a highly-classified U.S. cyberattack against Iran’s nuclear program.

The charges weren’t exactly a surprise. Cartwright has known for more than three years that he was the target of an investigation into who leaked details about the so-called Stuxnet computer virus, which the United States used to destroy centrifuges inside an Iranian nuclear enrichment facility in 2008 and 2009.

But notably, Cartwright who previously served as vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, is the only person to have been charged in the leak investigation about the highly classified program, even though it’s clear from various books and articles that he wasn’t the only source of information about it. Times reporter David Sanger revealed the operation and wrote about it extensively in his book, Confront and Conceal.

That raises questions about why Cartwright is being charged now and if he was somehow singled out for speaking to Sanger and another journalist, Newsweek’s Daniel Klaidman.

In a statement, Cartwright acknowledged that he had talked to the journalists but said he was not the source of the leak about Stuxnet. Rather, he portrayed himself as trying to mitigate the fallout from the revelation of a secret program.