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Administration Defense of Domestic Surveillance Program Escalates

Notable articles today:

  • New York Times: Delicate Dance for Bush in Depicting Spy Program as Asset
  • Washington Post (reg. req’d) Bush Defends Domestic Spying – Deputy National Intelligence Chief Says Program is Targeted on Al Qaeda
  • President Discusses Global War on Terror at Kansas State University, January 23, 2006: “This is a — I repeat to you, even though you hear words, “domestic spying,” these are not phone calls within the United States. It’s a phone call of an al Qaeda, known al Qaeda suspect, making a phone call into the United States. I’m mindful of your civil liberties, and so I had all kinds of lawyers review the process. We briefed members of the United States Congress, one of whom was Senator Pat Roberts, about this program. You know, it’s amazing, when people say to me, well, he was just breaking the law — if I wanted to break the law, why was I briefing Congress?”
  • Former NSA head defends domestic surveillance: General Michael V. Hayden, the Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence, (and former National Security Agency Director “…acknowledged that the program established a lower legal standard to eavesdrop on terror-related communications than a surveillance law implemented in 1978.” [General Hayden spoke today at the National Press Club on the NSA Monitoring Controversy]
  • Related sources:

  • Village Voice: NSA whistle-blower wants to tell congress, but they don’t have clearance to hear
  • Postings on domestic surveillance
  • USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act of 2005 (H.R. 3199): A Legal Analysis of the Conference Bill, January 17, 2006 (72 pages, PDF)
  • The Nation, “What the President Ordered in This Case Was a Crime
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