You are hereSpying
By Associated Press
The House handed President Bush a victory Saturday, voting to expand the government's abilities to eavesdrop without warrants on foreign suspects whose communications pass through the United States.
The 227-183 vote, which followed the Senate's approval Friday, sends the bill to Bush for his signature. He had urged Congress to approve it, saying Saturday, "Protecting America is our most solemn obligation."
By Thomas Ferraro and Richard Cowan, Reuters
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Democratic-led U.S. Senate, amid warnings of further attacks on the United States, approved a bill on Friday that would allow President George W. Bush to maintain his controversial domestic spying program.
On a vote of 60-28, the Senate sent the measure to the Democratic-led U.S. House of Representatives for consideration as early as Saturday as lawmakers push to begin a month-long recess.
By Larisa Alexandrovna, Huffington Post
Dear Speaker Pelosi:
I cannot fathom why you would think it wise on any level to grant more power to those who have already so abused it, but since you are bent on enabling the imperial presidency, let me just remind you of something: There is nothing wrong with the FISA law that the impeachment of Dick Cheney cannot resolve. We, the public know this. More importantly, we the press know that giving the President more surveillance power is not only un-Constitutional, it is also a direct and full frontal assault on the press. Or did you actually think that Karl Rove and his new spy toy are going to go looking for Osama bin who?
Patriot Abuse: I Was Gagged By The Patriot Act While The Attorney General Was Free To Tell Falsehoods About It.
By JANET NOCEK, Hartford (CT) Courant July 22, 2007
When the USA Patriot Act was being reauthorized in 2005, Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales claimed that not one single abuse of the "national security letters" provision had been reported.
It must be his poor memory that caused Mr. Gonzales to tell Congress that no abuse had been reported. What else would explain why he did not mention the reports that described abuses and mismanagement of NSLs - which we now discover were in his possession before his testimony?
NSA Spying Part of Broader Effort
By Dan Eggen, Washington Post
Intelligence chief says bush authorized secret activities under one order.
The Bush administration's chief intelligence official said yesterday that President Bush authorized a series of secret surveillance activities under a single executive order in late 2001. The disclosure makes clear that a controversial National Security Agency program was part of a much broader operation than the president previously described.
By Nick Juliano, Raw Story
President Bush is pressuring Democrats in Congress to expand his administration's authority to eavesdrop on international communications without a warrant and Democratic leaders seem more willing to give him at least part of what he wants, the New York Times reports.
By SCOTT SHANE and DAVID JOHNSTON, New York Times
A 2004 dispute over the National Security Agency’s secret surveillance program that led top Justice Department officials to threaten resignation involved computer searches through massive electronic databases, according to current and former officials briefed on the program.
By Spencer Ackerman and Paul Kiel, TPMMuckraker
Alberto Gonzales' testimony that there was "no serious disagreement" within the Bush Administration about the NSA warrantless surveillance program has left senators sputtering and fulminating about the attorney general's apparent prevarications. But a closer examination of Gonzales' testimony and other public statements from the Administration suggest that there may be a method to the madness.
Democrats urge perjury probe of Gonzales
(Or maybe they could just IMPEACH the lot of them?)
By LAURIE KELLMAN and LARA JAKES JORDAN, Associated Press
Senate Democrats called for a perjury investigation against Attorney General Alberto Gonzales on Thursday and subpoenaed top presidential aide Karl Rove in a deepening political and legal clash with the Bush administration.
"It has become apparent that the attorney general has provided at a minimum half-truths and misleading statements," four Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee wrote in a letter to Solicitor General Paul Clement.
Court throws out spying lawsuit
3-judge panel splits along party lines over Bush’s surveillance program
By Associated Press
CINCINNATI - A federal appeals court on Friday ordered the dismissal of a lawsuit challenging President Bush’s domestic spying program, saying the plaintiffs had no standing to sue.
In a 2-1 decision, two Republican appointees on the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against allowing the lawsuit. A Democratic appointee judge disagreed, saying it was clear to him that the post-9/11 warrantless surveillance program aimed at uncovering terrorist activity violated the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978.
By David Swanson
A former member of U.S. military intelligence has decided to reveal what she knows about warrantless spying on Americans and about the fixing of intelligence in the leadup to the invasion of Iraq.
Adrienne Kinne describes an incident just prior to the invasion of Iraq in which a fax came into her office at Fort Gordon in Georgia that purported to provide information on the location of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. The fax came from the Iraqi National Congress, a group opposed to Saddam Hussein and favoring an invasion. The fax contained types of information that required that it be translated and transmitted to President Bush within 15 minutes. But Kinne had been eavesdropping on two nongovernmental aid workers driving in Iraq who were panicked and trying to find safety before the bombs dropped. She focused on trying to protect them, and was reprimanded for the delay in translating the fax. She then challenged her officer in charge, Warrant Officer John Berry, on the credibility of the fax, and he told her that it was not her place or his to challenge such things. None of the other 20 or so people in the unit questioned anything, Kinne said.
By Bruce Fein, Washington Times
In 2006, House Judiciary Democrats inquired when the Justice Department initially concluded the Authorization to Use Military Force (AUMF) against international terrorism empowered the National Security Agency (NSA) to conduct warrantless electronic surveillance against U.S. citizens in contravention of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978 (FISA).
By Michael Isikoff and Evan Thomas, Newsweek
Gonzales, the president's lawyer and Texas buddy, is twisting slowly in the wind, facing a vote of no confidence from the Senate.
The United States Department of Justice has not always been above politics. John F. Kennedy, after all, appointed his brother and consigliere Robert to be attorney general. But the Justice Department is supposed to stand for the rule of law - to be the enforcer of the laws of the United States, not the place presidents go to get around the law. Independence is an important tradition in the columned limestone building on Constitution Avenue. It is worth remembering that before Richard Nixon could find someone at the Justice Department willing to fire the Watergate special prosecutor in 1973, he had to accept the resignations of the attorney general, Elliot Richardson, and the deputy attorney general, William Ruckelshaus. (Solicitor General Robert Bork finally did the deed.)
The revelations coming from a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing last week were startling. On May 15, former Deputy Attorney General James Comey testified about the Bush administration's extraordinary efforts in March 2004 to gain legal approval for the National Security Agency's domestic surveillance program by visiting Attorney General John Ashcroft's hospital room as he recovered from gall bladder surgery. The story is surprising, at the very least—but has so far attracted little media curiosity.
It's something millions of people have asked themselves over the six year reign of terror under the Bush Occupation - "How low will they go?" Well, ask no more to what depths of depravity the Bushies will stoop. All you have to do is watch former Deputy Attorney General James B. Comey's testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee describing how then WH Counsel Alberto Gonzales and former WH Chief-of-Staff Andrew Card went to former AG John Ashcroft's ICU bedside in attempt to coerce him into rubber-stamping the CrippledChimp's illegal NSA and FBI spying programs...
By Michael Collins, http://www.scoop.co.nz
Bush, Gonzales, Card Clearly Implicated
Tuesday was a remarkable day at the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee hearings. The exchange between Sen. Charles Schumer, R, NY and former Deputy Attorney General James Comey provides clear evidence pointing to criminal activity by the president, U.S Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, and former presidential adviser, Andrew Card. If Comey’s testimony is supported by other reliable witnesses, the Bush, Gonzales, and Card crew have some serious questions to answer.
By Glenn Greenwald, Salon
The testimony yesterday from James Comey re-focuses attention on one of the long unresolved mysteries of the NSA scandal. And the new information Comey revealed, though not answering that question decisively, suggests some deeply troubling answers. Most of all, yesterday's hearing underscores how unresolved the entire NSA matter is -- how little we know (but ought to know) about what actually happened and how little accountability there has been for some of the most severe and blatant acts of presidential lawbreaking in the country's history.
Another Enemy of the People? Mark Graber
I am posting the below with the permission of Professor Walter F. Murphy, emeritus of Princeton University. For those who do not know, Professor Murphy is easily the most distinguished scholar of public law in political science. His works on both constitutional theory and judicial behavior are classics in the field... "On 1 March 07, I was scheduled to fly on American Airlines to Newark, NJ, to attend an academic conference at Princeton University, designed to focus on my latest scholarly book, Constitutional Democracy...
"When I tried to use the curb-side check in at the Sunport, I was denied a boarding pass because I was on the Terrorist Watch list...
More bush Police State criminality...
FBI Provided Inaccurate Data for Surveillance Warrants
FBI agents repeatedly provided inaccurate information to win secret court approval of surveillance warrants in terrorism and espionage cases, prompting officials to tighten controls on the way the bureau uses that powerful anti-terrorism tool, according to Justice Department and FBI officials. The errors were pervasive enough that the chief judge of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, wrote the Justice Department in December 2005 to complain...
In this clip, former AT&T technician Mark Klein discusses his investigation of a secret room built in conjunction with the National Security Agency through which all customer information was routed. Watch this.
By Agence France-Presse
US officials failed to sideline dozens of domestic spying lawsuits on Tuesday as a federal judge ordered the war on terror-connected cases to proceed despite a pending appeal.
San Francisco District Court Chief Judge Vaughn Walker issued a brief written ruling that allowed evidence-gathering to commence conditionally despite protests by government lawyers.
By Jim Dwyer
The New York Times
Friday 16 February 2007
In a rebuke of a surveillance practice greatly expanded by the New York Police Department after the Sept. 11 attacks, a federal judge ruled yesterday that the police must stop the routine videotaping of people at public gatherings unless there is an indication that unlawful activity may occur.
Twenty two members of House Judiciary Committee demand NSA spy docs
By RAW STORY
Twenty two Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee wrote Attorney General Alberto Gonzales Wednesday demanding that he turned over documents pertaining to the Bush Administration's warrantless surveillance program, RAW STORY has learned. To date, only two Committee members have received access to the documents.
Justice to Release Spy Program Details to Senators
By Lara Jakes Jordan, Associated Press
Washington - Attorney General Alberto Gonzales said Wednesday he will turn over secret documents detailing the government's domestic spying program, ending a two-week standoff with the Senate Judiciary Committee over surveillance targeting terror suspects.
"It's never been the case where we said we would never provide access," Gonzales told reporters.
The FBI appears to have adopted an invasive Internet surveillance technique that collects far more data on innocent Americans than previously has been disclosed.
Instead of recording only what a particular suspect is doing, agents conducting investigations appear to be assembling the activities of thousands of Internet users at a time into massive databases, according to current and former officials. That database can subsequently be queried for names, e-mail addresses or keywords.
By LARA JAKES JORDAN, Associated Press
The Bush administration sought on Thursday to drop its appeal of a federal court ruling that concluded the government's domestic spying program is unconstitutional, saying the entire issue is moot since the surveillance now is monitored by a secret court.
Responding, lawyers for the American Civil Liberties Union said they would continue to push for their day in court since President Bush retains authority to continue the warrantless spying program.