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Thread: Bush: U.S. won't stop spying on Americans

  1. #1
    Certified SG Addict Brent's Avatar
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    Bush: U.S. won't stop spying on Americans

    http://www.wfaa.com/sharedcontent/dw....1c231d9e.html

    you may not be able to view this, i'll quote the whole thing

    Bush: U.S. won't stop spying on Americans

    03:29 PM CST on Saturday, December 17, 2005
    Associated Press

    WASHINGTON — Facing angry criticism and challenges to his authority in Congress, President Bush on Saturday unapologetically defended his administration's right to conduct secret post-Sept. 11 spying in the U.S. as "critical to saving American lives."

    One Democrat said Bush was acting more like a king than a democratically elected leader. Bush said the White House had kept the congressional leadership informed, which a Republican lawmaker confirmed.

    Often appearing angry in an eight-minute address, the president made clear that he has no intention of halting his authorizations of the monitoring activities and said the public disclosure of the spy operation by the news media endangered Americans.

    Bush's willingness to publicly acknowledge some of the government's most classified activities was a stunning development for a president known to dislike disclosure of even the most mundane inner workings of his White House.

    Since October 2001, the super-secret National Security Agency has, without court-approved warrants, eavesdropped on the international phone calls and e-mails of people inside the United States.

    News of the program came at a particularly damaging and delicate time.

    Already, the Bush administration is under fire for allegedly operating secret prisons in Eastern Europe and shipping suspected terrorists to other countries for harsh interrogations.

    The NSA program's existence surfaced as the administration and its GOP allies on Capitol Hill were fighting to save the expiring provisions of the USA Patriot Act, the domestic anti-terrorism law enacted after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

    In a stinging failure to Bush, Democrats and a few Republicans who say this law gives so much latitude to law enforcement officials that it threatens Americans' constitutional liberties succeeded Friday in stalling its renewal.

    So Bush scrapped the version of his weekly radio address that he had already taped—on the recent elections in Iraq—and delivered a live speech from the White House's Roosevelt Room in which he lashed out at the senators blocking the Patriot Act as irresponsible and confirmed the NSA program. The gravity with which the White House regarded the situation was evident by the presence in the West Wing on a normally quiet Saturday of many of Bush's closest aides.

    Bush said his authority to approve what he called a "vital tool in our war against the terrorists" came from his constitutional powers as commander in chief. He said that he has personally signed off on reauthorizations more than 30 times.

    "The American people expect me to do everything in my power under our laws and Constitution to protect them and their civil liberties," Bush said. "And that is exactly what I will continue to do, so long as I'm the president of the United States."

    James Bamford, author of two books on the NSA, said the program could be problematic because it bypasses a special court set up by the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act to authorize eavesdropping on suspected terrorists.

    "I didn't hear him specify any legal right, except his right as president, which in a democracy doesn't make much sense," Bamford said in an interview. "Today, what Bush said is he went around the law, which is a violation of the law—which is illegal."

    Susan Low Bloch, a professor of constitutional law at Georgetown University Law Center, said the president needs authorization from Congress for this kind of activity—or risk adverse rulings from the Supreme Court has it has with other post-Sept. 11 changes.

    "He's taking a hugely expansive interpretation of the Constitution and the president's powers under the Constitution," she said.

    That view was echoed by congressional Democrats.

    "I tell you, he's President George Bush, not King George Bush. This is not the system of government we have and that we fought for," Sen. Russell Feingold, D-Wis., told The Associated Press.

    Added Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.: "The Bush administration seems to believe it is above the law."

    Republican Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, on Friday said the NSA program was inappropriate and he promised hearings soon.

    Bush defended the monitoring program as narrowly designed and used "consistent with U.S. law and the Constitution." He said it is employed only to intercept the international communications of people inside the U.S. who have been determined to have "a clear link" to al-Qaeda or related terrorist organizations.

    Government officials have refused to provide details, including defining the standards used to establish such a link or saying how many people are being monitored.

    The program is reviewed every 45 days, using fresh threat assessments, legal reviews, and information from previous activities under the program, the president said. Intelligence officials involved in the monitoring receive extensive training in civil liberties, he said.

    Bush said leaders in Congress have been briefed more than a dozen times. Rep. Pete Hoekstra, R-Mich., told House Republicans during a private meeting Saturday that those informed of the program by the White House were the top Republican and Democratic leaders of the House and Senate and of each chamber's intelligence committees. "They've been through the whole thing," Hoekstra said.

    The program through the nation's largest spy agency is designed in part to fix problems revealed by the 2001 attacks, in which it came to be learned that two of the suicide hijackers were communicating from San Diego with al-Qaeda operatives overseas.

    "The activities I have authorized make it more likely that killers like these 9-11 hijackers will be identified and located in time," Bush said. "The activities conducted under this authorization have helped detect and prevent possible terrorist attacks in the United States and abroad.

    The president had harsh words for those who revealed the program to the media, saying they acted improperly and illegally. The surveillance, was first disclosed in Friday's New York Times.

    "As a result, our enemies have learned information they should not have," Bush said. "The unauthorized disclosure of this effort damages our national security and puts our citizens at risk."

    Bush has more to worry about on Capitol Hill than his difficulties with the Patriot Act. Lawmakers have begun challenging Bush on his Iraq policy, reflecting polling that shows half of the country is not behind him on the war.

    On Sunday, the president was continuing his effort to reverse that by giving his fifth major speech in less than three weeks on Iraq. This latest one was a 15-minute address, set in prime time from the Oval Office, that was to focus on his vision for Iraq for 2006.

    One bright spot for the White House was a new poll showing that a strong majority of Americans oppose, as does Bush and most lawmakers, an immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq. The AP-Ipsos poll found 57 percent of those surveyed said the U.S. military should stay until Iraq is stabilized.

  2. #2
    Second Most EVIL YARDofSTUF's Avatar
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    Bush Hitler shall not back down!

  3. #3
    Junior Member MadDoctor's Avatar
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    ...welcome to yesterday's news.
    People will forget what you said... and people will forget what you did... but people will never forget how you made them feel.

  4. #4
    Ohh Hell yeah.. Sava700's Avatar
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    There are prob far worse things being done by other countries and even in this one that you, me and whoever don't know or need to know about. I could care less if they listen to my conversation... if they did I'm sure they would have sent me money by now!

  5. #5
    Junior Member zooner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sava700
    There are prob far worse things being done by other countries and even in this one that you, me and whoever don't know or need to know about. I could care less if they listen to my conversation... if they did I'm sure they would have sent me money by now!
    humph.

    I'm assuming you've never been wrongly accused of anything.
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  6. #6
    http://www.cnn.com/2005/POLITICS/12/...nsa/index.html

    CNN?..yea ...shaddup..pick your source....to entertain the theorists here ....is this now the beginning of putting the clamps down on the media? ...ooooh they jeopardized national security ..ooooooooh


    well?

  7. #7
    P/T Pagan God thepieman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Izzo
    http://www.cnn.com/2005/POLITICS/12/...nsa/index.html

    CNN?..yea ...shaddup..pick your source....to entertain the theorists here ....is this now the beginning of putting the clamps down on the media? ...ooooh they jeopardized national security ..ooooooooh


    well?
    I wonder if there was something in that Patriot extension that would cover his ass from past wrongdoing that he was so anxious to pass it. Just like the waiver he wanted to get for the CIA to be exempt in regards to the Secret Prisons and torture. All the rats are going to start jumping ship.
    Even Colin Powell mentioned that Renditions and secret prisons have been known by European governments that were acting so surprised. This rabbit hole will be much deeper then what is showing.


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  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by thepieman
    I wonder if there was something in that Patriot extension that would cover his ass from past wrongdoing that he was so anxious to pass it. Just like the waiver he wanted to get for the CIA to be exempt in regards to the Secret Prisons and torture. All the rats are going to start jumping ship.
    Even Colin Powell mentioned that Renditions and secret prisons have been known by European governments that were acting so surprised. This rabbit hole will be much deeper then what is showing.


    Pie

    This is just getting silly. Hollywood couldn't come up with a better script.

  9. #9
    Conspiracy Fool knightmare's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thepieman
    I wonder if there was something in that Patriot extension that would cover his ass from past wrongdoing that he was so anxious to pass it. Just like the waiver he wanted to get for the CIA to be exempt in regards to the Secret Prisons and torture. All the rats are going to start jumping ship.
    Even Colin Powell mentioned that Renditions and secret prisons have been known by European governments that were acting so surprised. This rabbit hole will be much deeper then what is showing.


    Pie
    I don't know about the patriot act, but he just missed/got under the window date, for the laws passed for international war crimes.
    “"A wise man can learn more from a foolish question than a fool can learn from a wise answer."”

    Bruce Lee

  10. #10
    P/T Pagan God thepieman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by knightmare
    I don't know about the patriot act, but he just missed/got under the window date, for the laws passed for international war crimes.
    If they just busted that General from Bosnia ...they can still get him too. I don't think there is a statute of limitation for war crimes.
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  11. #11
    Conspiracy Fool knightmare's Avatar
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    I kinda mixed up what i was trying to say Pie, they established a court for this, there will come a time when all nations and citizens will abide in this court.


    The Creation of an International Criminal Court


    The International Criminal Court (I.C.C.) was officially established on July 1, 2002, and is located in The Hague, The Netherlands. However, all of the world's nations have not ratified the Rome Statute of the I.C.C., the document outlining the purposes, capabilities, and restrictions of the I.C.C. In fact, the United States, Russia, and Japan are among the major industrialized states that have yet to ratify this document. However, a sufficient number of nations have ratified the Rome Statute, and in accordance with its rules, the court now officially exists.

    A key component of the I.C.C. is that only war crimes committed after the I.C.C.'s establishment can fall under its jurisdiction. Another aspect is that only those nations that ratify the document will fall under its jurisdiction. In general, the I.C.C. will have jurisdiction over crimes brought to its attention by outside parties or by its own investigators. The I.C.C. will not replace national tribunals, but will complement them by offering an arena for hearing claims that may be too complicated or extensive for a national court.[4]

    One could argue that until all of the nations of the world ratify the Rome Statute, the Court cannot truly be considered an international criminal court. However, the establishment of the Court is a significant step toward the creation of an international system of war crimes justice.
    “"A wise man can learn more from a foolish question than a fool can learn from a wise answer."”

    Bruce Lee

  12. #12
    P/T Pagan God thepieman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by knightmare
    I kinda mixed up what i was trying to say Pie, they established a court for this, there will come a time when all nations and citizens will abide in this court.


    The Creation of an International Criminal Court


    The International Criminal Court (I.C.C.) was officially established on July 1, 2002, and is located in The Hague, The Netherlands. However, all of the world's nations have not ratified the Rome Statute of the I.C.C., the document outlining the purposes, capabilities, and restrictions of the I.C.C. In fact, the United States, Russia, and Japan are among the major industrialized states that have yet to ratify this document. However, a sufficient number of nations have ratified the Rome Statute, and in accordance with its rules, the court now officially exists.

    A key component of the I.C.C. is that only war crimes committed after the I.C.C.'s establishment can fall under its jurisdiction. Another aspect is that only those nations that ratify the document will fall under its jurisdiction. In general, the I.C.C. will have jurisdiction over crimes brought to its attention by outside parties or by its own investigators. The I.C.C. will not replace national tribunals, but will complement them by offering an arena for hearing claims that may be too complicated or extensive for a national court.[4]

    One could argue that until all of the nations of the world ratify the Rome Statute, the Court cannot truly be considered an international criminal court. However, the establishment of the Court is a significant step toward the creation of an international system of war crimes justice.

    What about the court in The Hague?


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  13. #13
    Moderator Bouncer's Avatar
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    The US is not a signatory to the ICC.

    Regards,
    -Bouncer-

  14. #14
    Junior Member MadDoctor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bouncer
    The US is not a signatory to the ICC.

    Regards,
    -Bouncer-
    How does Bouncer known this stuff off the top of his head?!?!?!?! That’s why I love the big guy!
    People will forget what you said... and people will forget what you did... but people will never forget how you made them feel.

  15. #15
    Conspiracy Fool knightmare's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MadDoctor
    How does Bouncer known this stuff off the top of his head?!?!?!?! That’s why I love the big guy!

    he's pretty smart, plus it is enclosed in the post..

    (the United States, Russia, and Japan are among the major industrialized states that have yet to ratify this document.)
    “"A wise man can learn more from a foolish question than a fool can learn from a wise answer."”

    Bruce Lee

  16. #16
    ♫♪ ♫♪ ♫♪ ♫♪ downhill's Avatar
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    So Brent, since you posted this article....what's your thoughts on the issue?

  17. #17
    Conspiracy Fool knightmare's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by downhill
    So Brent, since you posted this article....what's your thoughts on the issue?
    wow Dh, now you are putting him on the spot...
    “"A wise man can learn more from a foolish question than a fool can learn from a wise answer."”

    Bruce Lee

  18. #18
    ♫♪ ♫♪ ♫♪ ♫♪ downhill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by knightmare
    wow Dh, now you are putting him on the spot...
    Honestly, that's not my intent.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by downhill
    So Brent, since you posted this article....what's your thoughts on the issue?

    troublemaker

  20. #20
    Certified SG Addict Brent's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by downhill
    So Brent, since you posted this article....what's your thoughts on the issue?
    Personally I feel like our privacy is going the way of the do do. I do not like the fact that we could be spied on by our own government. Cameras are getting smaller and smaller and there is no telling who is watching you. Though I do understand the desire to help protect our nation, and one way is to eaves drop on voice and data communication. It is a fine line, a very fine line, between protecting this country through eaves dropping and infringing upon our privacy and our rights as citizens. I sure am glad I am not the one in the Whitehouse.

    Overall I would urge the Whitehouse to protect our nation which part of that is protecting our rights and freedoms as citizens. It's not an easy task. Like Burke, I can see the beginnings of a police state. Hopefully we won't come to that though.

    I don't have any stance on the patriot act myself, I haven't read up enough on it to formulate an opinion.

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