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Published: Sunday 08 September, 2013

longchamp backpacks longchamp backpacks ´╗┐Glasnost on the Potomac under Obama

FILE This Sept. 19, 2007 file photo shows the National Security Agency building at Fort Meade, Md. When Edward Snowden joined friends in his late teens to edit a website built around a shared interest in Japanese animation, they chartered the venture from an apartment in military housing at Fort George G. Meade, the 8squaremile installation that houses the NSA center dubbed the Puzzle Palace and calls itself the nation preeminent center for information, intelligence and cyber. AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File

Some other Democrats, too, are proving hostile to the administration on this. Sens. Ron Wyden of Oregon and Mark Udall of Colorado have dogged the administration to back off what they see as an assault on civil liberties and challenged its claims that the telephone and email monitoring programs helped stop specific acts of terrorism.

Intelligence committee members are briefed on certain national security secrets but not allowed to talk about them. That has left Udall, for one, champing at the bit. He told The Denver Post he was well aware of the monitoring programs that shocked lawmakers who hadn been clued in and did short of leaking classified information to bring it to light.

As a candidate, Obama criticized Bush for putting forward a choice between the liberties we cherish and the security we provide. Now he says, can have 100 percent security and also then have 10 longchamp backpacks 0 percent privacy and zero inconvenience, and, going to have to make some choices as a society. ___


These tools have been used just as vigorously as in the Bush years, watchdogs say, despite modest steps toward accountability.

The statesecrets privilege helps the government withhold sensitive national security records in court proceedings. But in its 2013 review of Obama first term, the Center for Effective Government says both the Bush and Obama administrations used the privilege to dismiss entire cases against the government, not just protect specific records.

The government also operates with a range of regulations, legal opinions and policy directives that ne longchamp backpacks ver see the light of day.

Targeted drone killings, the recently leaked phone and email surveillance programs, and a former Bush program of warrantless wiretapping came from these shadows.

administration has continued to use secret to make controversial decisions without oversight, to disallow legal challenge, and to withhold key decisions and memoranda that have the force of law from public scrutiny, the center says.

Certain actions are subject to court scrutiny but it a court like none other. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court hears cases inside vaults in a federal courthouse.

In one step toward openness, the Obama administration has disclosed some secret legal opinions, but only those from the previous administration, regarding the treatment of terrorist detainees and some other matters specific longchamp backpacks to the Bush years.

The Obama administration has pursued an unprecedented number of investigations of those who leak government secrets and taken extraordinary steps in doing so. Among them are the secret seizure by the Justice Department of two months of phone records for more than 20 Associated Press telephone lines and the gathering of emails of Fox News journalist James Rosen, in both cases to try to identify sources of stories.

At the same time, a 2012 law signed by Obama improved protections for whistleblowers, generally understood to be those in government who expose waste, fraud or abuse. Spillers of national security secrets needn apply.

All governments always have kept secrets on the grounds that sensitive information cannot fall into the hands of adversaries and that frank discussions among nations and inside the government must stay confidential until they no longer matter. But history is rife with secrets kept for political purposes, to conceal corruption and simply to avoid inconvenience or embarrassment.

Now the court martial of Army Pfc. Bradley Manning is addressing how grave were the secrets he revealed when he supplied WikiLeaks with more than 700,000 classified battlefield reports, diplomatic cables and video clips while working as an intelligence analyst in Iraq. His lawyers contend damage was minimal. longchamp backpacks