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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

ACLU Reacts to FISA Court Denying Access To WireTapping Records

Hat tip to Jay at Stop the ACLU.


IT IS HEREBY ORDERED that the Motion of The American Civil Liberties Union for Release of Court Records is DENIED, for the reasons set forth in the Memeorandum Opinion issued on this date.

John D Bates
Judge, Foreign Intelligence
Surveillance Court

23 Page PDF file here. (From Wired Blog Network)

The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, in a rare public opinion, said the public has no right to view the documents because they deal with the clandestine workings of national security agencies.

The American Civil Liberties Union asked the court to release the records in August.

Writing for the court, U.S. District Judge John D. Bates refused.

"The identification of targets and methods of surveillance would permit adversaries to evade surveillance, conceal their activities, and possibly mislead investigators through false information," Bates said.

Needless to say the ACLU is disappointed that the FISA court did not rule to jeopardize our National Security.

The following can be attributed to Jameel Jaffer, Director of the ACLU National Security Project:

"The decision is disappointing, both in its reasoning and its result. A federal court's interpretation of federal law should not be kept secret from the American public. The Bush administration is seeking expanded surveillance powers from Congress because of the rulings issued by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court earlier this year. Under this decision, those rulings may remain secret forever."

Stop the ACLU:

Of course this common sense approach of avoiding the revelation of our “secret” methods of listening in on terrorist activity disppoints the ACLU. Their history of looking out for the “rights” of our enemies during war time is long and documented.

Judge Bates made a sensible decision, by releasing those records our ability to collect information about possible attacks and about terror groups, could be severely hampered, which is something the ACLU has shown time and again they don't care about.

Judge Bates also concluded:

Sources could be outed, targets could be tipped off, and diplomatic relations could be damaged.

"All these possible harms are real and significant and, quite frankly, beyond debate," Bates wrote in the opinion.

Once again, the FISA court keeps us safe from the ACLU.