Monday, August 06, 2007

New York Times Story on FISA Legislation

Statement by Deputy Press Secretary Tony Fratto on New York Times Story on FISA Legislation.

Deputy Press Secretary Tony Fratto VIDCAP from White House press briefing 02/23/07Today's New York Times story by James Risen makes the unfounded claim that new FISA legislation has "broadly expanded the government's authority to eavesdrop on the international telephone calls and e-mail messages American citizens without warrants." This is highly misleading.
Revolutionary changes in technology have occurred since FISA was enacted in 1978, and those changes have resulted in FISA--contrary to the intent of Congress in 1978--often requiring the government to get a court order to collect information on foreign terrorists and other foreign targets located overseas. The new law makes clear that a court order is not required to conduct surveillance of foreign intelligence targets located overseas.

But under FISA, court approval is required for the government to target an individual located in the United States, and nothing in the new law changes that.

Congress has recognized there does not have to be a trade off between the goals of protecting Americans' rights and keeping our Nation safe. The Protect America Act accomplishes both goals.

# # # For Immediate Release Office of the Press Secretary August 6, 2007

Bush Signs Law to Widen Reach for Wiretapping By JAMES RISEN Published: August 6, 2007

WASHINGTON, Aug. 5 — President Bush signed into law on Sunday legislation that broadly expanded the government’s authority to eavesdrop on the international telephone calls and e-mail messages of American citizens without warrants.

Congressional aides and others familiar with the details of the law said that its impact went far beyond the small fixes that administration officials had said were needed to gather information about foreign terrorists. They said seemingly subtle changes in legislative language would sharply alter the legal limits on the government’s ability to monitor millions of phone calls and e-mail messages going in and out of the United States.
They also said that the new law for the first time provided a legal framework for much of the surveillance without warrants that was being conducted in secret by the National Security Agency and outside the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, the 1978 law that is supposed to regulate the way the government can listen to the private communications of American citizens.

“This more or less legalizes the N.S.A. program,” said Kate Martin, director of the Center for National Security Studies in Washington, who has studied the new legislation.

Previously, the government needed search warrants approved by a special intelligence court to eavesdrop on telephone conversations, e-mail messages and other electronic communications between individuals inside the United States and people overseas, if the government conducted the surveillance inside the United States.

Today, most international telephone conversations to and from the United States are conducted over fiber-optic cables, and the most efficient way for the government to eavesdrop on them is to latch on to giant telecommunications switches located in the United States.

By changing the legal definition of what is considered “electronic surveillance,” the new law allows the government to eavesdrop on those conversations without warrants — latching on to those giant switches — as long as the target of the government’s surveillance is “reasonably believed” to be overseas.

For example, if a person in Indianapolis calls someone in London, the National Security Agency can eavesdrop on that conversation without a warrant, as long as the N.S.A.’s target is the person in London.

Tony Fratto, a White House spokesman, said Sunday in an interview that the new law went beyond fixing the foreign-to-foreign problem, potentially allowing the government to listen to Americans calling overseas.

But he stressed that the objective of the new law is to give the government greater flexibility in focusing on foreign suspects overseas, not to go after Americans.

“It’s foreign, that’s the point,” Mr. Fratto said. “What you want to make sure is that you are getting the foreign target.”

The legislation to change the surveillance act was rushed through both the House and Senate in the last days before the August recess began.

The White House’s push for the change was driven in part by a still-classified ruling earlier this year by the special intelligence court, which said the government needed to seek court-approved warrants to monitor those international calls going through American switches.

The new law, which is intended as a stopgap and expires in six months, also represents a power shift in terms of the oversight and regulation of government surveillance.

The new law gives the attorney general and the director of national intelligence the power to approve the international surveillance, rather than the special intelligence court. The court’s only role will be to review and approve the procedures used by the government in the surveillance after it has been conducted. It will not scrutinize the cases of the individuals being monitored.

The law also gave the administration greater power to force telecommunications companies to cooperate with such spying operations. The companies can now be compelled to cooperate by orders from the attorney general and the director of national intelligence.

Democratic Congressional aides said Sunday that some telecommunications company officials had told Congressional leaders that they were unhappy with that provision in the bill and might challenge the new law in court. The aides said the telecommunications companies had told lawmakers that they would rather have a court-approved warrant ordering them to comply.

In fact, pressure from the telecommunications companies on the Bush administration has apparently played a major hidden role in the political battle over the surveillance issue over the past few months.

In January, the administration placed the N.S.A.’s warrantless wiretapping program under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, and subjected it for the first time to the scrutiny of the FISA court.

Democratic Congressional aides said Sunday that they believed that pressure from major telecommunications companies on the White House was a major factor in persuading the Bush administration to do that. Those companies were facing major lawsuits for having secretly cooperated with the warrantless wiretapping program, and now wanted greater legal protections before cooperating further.

But the change suddenly swamped the court with an enormous volume of search warrant applications, leading, in turn, to the administration’s decision to seek the new legislation. New York Times Story on FISA Legislation

Copyright 2007 The New York Times Company

*article Bush Signs Law to Widen Reach for Wiretapping fair use. This work is copyrighted and unlicensed. However, it is believed that the use of this work in the article New York Times Story on FISA Legislation qualifies as fair use under United States copyright law. Any other uses of this image, on Republican National Convention Blog or elsewhere, may be copyright infringement. See Wikipedia:Fair use and Wikipedia:Copyrights.

To the uploader: this tag is not a sufficient claim of fair use. You must also include the source of the work, all available copyright information, and a detailed fair use rationale. == Fair use for [[Bush Signs Law to Widen Reach for Wiretapping ]] == The article reproduced here is claimed to be used under fair use as:
  • # it is a historically significant article of a important event;
  • # it is of much lesser circulation than the original and is clearly marked as a copy with links to the original
  • # the article is only being used for informational purposes.
  • # Its inclusion in the article adds significantly to the story because it shows the subject of this article and how the event depicted was very historically significant to the general public.
Technorati tags: and or and or and or Graphene Oxide Paper Could Spawn a New Class of Materials and Spintronic Devices and The unexpected consensus among voting methods

Linkfest Haven, the Blogger's OasisTrackposted to Outside the Beltway, The Virtuous Republic, Perri Nelson's Website,
Rosemary's Thoughts, DeMediacratic Nation, Shadowscope, Webloggin, The Amboy Times, Leaning Straight Up, Conservative Cat, Diary of the Mad Pigeon, Pirate's Cove, Blue Star Chronicles, The Pink Flamingo, Planck's Constant, Wyvern dreams, Dumb Ox Daily News, Right Voices, Gone Hollywood, and The Yankee Sailor, thanks to Linkfest Haven Deluxe.

Trackback URL for this entry:

19 Trackbacks to this Post

Foreigners arrested at Satanic rock concert in Iran Excerpt: Included in the 230 young people arrested at the 'satanic concert', some were from Britain and Sweden. Punishment can include lashes, fines or imprisonment. From correspondents in Tehran The police operation took place on Wednesday night in the town of Weblog: Right Truth Tracked: 08.07.07 - 5:23 am

What About Terry Excerpt: What is it that would cause a man to break out of his comfort zone and say, “Enough is enough”?What is it that leads a person to activism?What is it that causes a person to risk arrest and his personal freedom by protesting against our ... Weblog: CommonSenseAmerica Tracked: 08.07.07 - 5:29 am

The Times; Afraid of Fearing the Right Thing to Fe Excerpt: “why, six years after 9/11, is this sort of fishing expedition the supposed first line of defense in the war on terrorism?” – Weblog: DeMediacratic Nation Tracked: 08.07.07 - 6:47 am

Moore's Sicko Has a Good Point Excerpt: I have not seen Sicko, nor do I intend to, as a matter of fact I ... Weblog: DeMediacratic Nation Tracked: 08.07.07 - 7:06 am

Read all of this one, it is interesting Excerpt: Source: My brother emailed this to me.Read down to the very bottom highlighted in green,IT'LL GIVE YOU GOOSEBUMPS! You don't want to miss this! ((*_*) )VERY INTERESTING-1. The Garden of Eden was in Iraq.2. Mesop... Weblog: Rosemary's Thoughts Tracked: 08.07.07 - 8:52 am

Conservative Thoughts Intifada Means War Even On NYC Madrassa T-Shirt… Read today’s New York Post article on the Khalil Gibran International Academy:” CITY PRINCIPAL IS ‘REVOLTING’ TIED TO ‘INTIFADA NYC’ SHIRTS.” It features Dhabah Almontaser’s views on the “Intifada NYC” t-shirt from the AWAAM organiza… Tracked: 08.07.07 08:57am

The World According To Carl Godly Wisdom — August 7, 2007… God Knows About All People At All Times Tracked: 08.07.07 09:06 am

Miss you, Pops Nuke, Says: Six years ago today, I lost my Dad. I miss him terribly. This is a repeat post, written in the wake of one of lt. Kerry’s “botched jokes” last year. 08.07.07 at 10:58 am

Employment denied, your're the wrong kind of white Excerpt: Political correctness gone too far, without a doubt. Abigail Howarth, 18, a white woman, applied for a job, but was told not to bother -- seems she was "the wrong kind of white." The company was looking to hire "ethnic Weblog: Right Truth Tracked: 08.07.07 - 11:08 am

FISA and the Imperial Judiciary Excerpt: What if a data packet could be purposely sent through the U.S. Weblog: DeMediacratic Nation Tracked: 08.07.07 - 11:18 am

NYC GPS A Go For Taxi Drivers Excerpt: Remember the outrage displayed from some NYC taxi drivers over the proposed installation of GPS in their taxis? Well, ... Weblog: 123beta Tracked: 08.07.07 - 3:42 pm

Indecision 08: Check The Carbon Footprints from Pirate's CoveIf there was any doubt that the liberal disciples of climate change fail to practice what they preach, nor even care, this should settle the case (Washington Times) Former Sen. John Edwards 2008 presidential campaign has paid nearly $22,000 to ... Tracked on August 07, 2007 at 03:52 PM

Things you should not do - if you are a Muslim Excerpt: After 9/11, unless you have a very, very good reason, you should not buy devices that look like pipes from Wal-Mart and stuff them with fireworks or gunpowder and drive near a military facility. Weblog: Planck's Constant Tracked: 08.07.07 - 4:27 pm

Hillary; compassionate misanthrope Hillary doesn’t trust humankind, which fits in nicely with the Liberal mindset; leave it to us and the nanny state will take care of you. Here’sa question and it’s something that has been irking me for some time now; why are all the ... Posted by a.k.a. Blandly Urbane at Tue Aug 07, 04:50:00 PM

Elizabeth Edwards Wishes Husband John Was a Black Excerpt: Elizabeth Edwards once again comes to the defense of her beautiful wife husband. I’m seeing a pattern here. He gets some bad press and she comes out swinging in his defense. The latest is her explanation as to why The Breck Girl (aka John Edwards) is... Weblog: Blue Star Chronicles Tracked: 08.07.07 - 6:46 pm

Leftists Want American Taliban Traitor John Walker Excerpt: This is unbelievable!The leftards are wanting the American Taliban, John Walker Lindh, AKA Abdul Hamid set free. I just heard a segment on Fox news in which some leftards were actually defending this guy and saying he was just ‘misguided’. MISG... Weblog: Blue Star Chronicles Tracked: 08.07.07 - 7:06 pm

Muslim Apostate Attacked in Netherlands Excerpt: In Saudi Arabia, leaving Islam is punishable by death. It looks like that's what our three terrorists' had in mind.AN IRANIAN-born politician who heads a Dutch group for ex-Muslims is to get extra protection after he was attacked near his Weblog: The Amboy Times Tracked: 08.07.07 - 7:30 pm

Obsessive Atheists Go on Anti-God Crusade David Wallace Croft is another of the obsessive anti-God Atheists who waste their time trying to make the lives of others tedious (Hat Tip: Colussus of Rhodey). One example of Croft’s inanity: complaining about a teacher who wore a ... Posted by Adam Graham at Tue Aug 07, 10:09:23 PM

Wednesday Hero Col. James W. Harrison Jr. 47 years old from Missouri US Army Command and General Staff College, Combined Forces Command Afghanistan May 6, 2007 Duty, Honor, Country. Col. James Harrison Jr. embodied that ethos, said his family. ... Posted by at Wed Aug 08, 12:19:24 AM

No comments:

Post a Comment