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Obama Administration Embraces Bush Position on Warrantless Wiretapping and Secrecy
by via EFF
Tuesday Apr 7th, 2009 3:07 PM
Says Court Must Dismiss Jewel v. NSA to Protect 'State Secrets'
San Francisco - The Obama administration formally adopted the Bush administration's position that the courts cannot judge the legality of the National Security Agency's (NSA's) warrantless wiretapping program, filing a motion to dismiss Jewel v. NSA late Friday.

In Jewel v. NSA, the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is challenging the agency's dragnet surveillance of millions of ordinary Americans. The Obama Justice Department claims in its motion that litigation over the wiretapping program would require the government to disclose privileged "state secrets." These are essentially the same arguments made by the Bush administration three years ago in Hepting v. AT&T, EFF's lawsuit against one of the telecom giants complicit in the NSA spying.

"President Obama promised the American people a new era of transparency, accountability, and respect for civil liberties," said EFF Senior Staff Attorney Kevin Bankston. "But with the Obama Justice Department continuing the Bush administration's cover-up of the National Security Agency's dragnet surveillance of millions of Americans, and insisting that the much-publicized warrantless wiretapping program is still a 'secret' that cannot be reviewed by the courts, it feels like deja vu all over again."

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by judgejudy
Wednesday Apr 8th, 2009 3:42 PM
The new boss is starting to look like the old boss.
by Heads or tails only looks different
Thursday Apr 9th, 2009 5:16 PM
Flip a coin, call heads or tails. Sure, both sides look different, though they are attached to the same piece of metal coin, despite their seemingly different appearances. Of course we can say; but the heads side of a coin looks totally different from the tails side, so they must be different! That is not the case anymore in our two party system, only the Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde appearance of difference masking an identical imperialist agenda..

In human terms, Obama looks, walks, acts and talks very differently from his predecessor GW Bush, yet several crucial decisions of actions (deeds, not words!) taken by Obama indicate that he is following the footsteps of the war criminal GW bush regime early on..

One key point is Obama's absolute refusal to attempt a war crimes trial of GW bush for their use of torture, a known violation of the Geneva Conventions. Complicity with a war criminal makes another war criminal, nothing less..

Now the Spanish government is taking the needed steps in charging several members (Feith, Gonzales, Yoo, etc...) of the GW bush regime with war crimes for authorizing torture that Obama himself refuses to do, perhaps cowering to the Republicans in hopes that his precious magical stimulus bill will pass..

Background on Spain's war crime charges;

"A Spanish court has initiated criminal proceedings against six former officials of the Bush administration. John Yoo, Jay Bybee, David Addington, Alberto Gonzales, William Haynes and Douglas Feith may face charges in Spain for authorizing torture at Guantánamo Bay.

If arrest warrants are issued, Spain and any of the other 24 countries that are parties to European extradition conventions could arrest these six men when they travel abroad.

Does Spain have the authority to prosecute Americans for crimes that didn’t take place on Spanish soil?

The answer is yes. It’s called “universal jurisdiction.” Universal jurisdiction is a well-established theory that countries, including the United States, have used for many years to investigate and prosecute foreign nationals for crimes that shock the conscience of the global community. It provides a critical legal tool to hold accountable those who commit crimes against the law of nations, including war crimes and crimes against humanity. Without universal jurisdiction, many of the most notorious criminals would go free. Countries that have used this as a basis to prosecute the most serious of crimes should be commended for their courage. They help to create a just world in which we all seek to live."

read on @;

The protection of war criminal GW bush regime from prosecution implicates Obama as being complicit to GW's torture of detainees, and the second violation is Obama's continued support of warrentless wiretapping as begun by GW bush regime in violation of the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights that guarantees Americans right to privacy without government intrusion. Neither would we be so naive to believe that this continued surveillance by U.S. authorities doesn't extend beyond the "likely suspects" of al Queda and other hardcore terrorist cells, yet remains an extension of the government's ear into the lives of domestic peace, poverty and environmental activists who struggle with localized oppression in their communities..

Since the Republicans attack Obama from the right over taxes and gun control, the voices on the left and elsewhere have remained mostly silent and seem afraid to critique Obama and the neoliberal Democrat establishment (Reid, Pelosi, Frank, etc...) lest they be called Rush Limbaugh fans and "right-wingers" as Barney Frank recently labeled a youth at Harvard for daring to ask a question that Frank didn't enjoy answering..

A different side of the same fascist coin doesn't mean much other than a new face to look at and a new tone to answer to. Anyway, if GW bush was already practicing a form of fascism, when does a fascist regime ever step down willingly? With Pelosi taking impeachment of Bush "off the table" on her first day in office and Obama ignoring GW bush's war crimes of torture, (would Obama be so willing to forgive and forget, let bygones be bygones if some nutcase killed his family! Think not!!) we simply have a continuation of the same fascist regime protocol GW bush begun post 9/11..

Terrorist attacks on U.S. soil is NOT valid grounds to violate the Geneva Convention AND the U.S. Constitution all at once!!

Now people need to decide on how to extract the six members Spain has charged with war crimes onto Spanish soil so they can be put on trial as the Nazis were at Nuremberg. Extraordinary rendition can work both ways as these six Bush regime officials may soon find out..

Finally Obama shows reluctance to withdraw the U.S. troops from Iraq in a timely manner as he promised during his campaign speech, and his insistence on continuing the useless and destructive occupation of Afghanistan, with every U.S. bomb dropped in the Afghani mountains, the Taliban grows stronger with greater popular support..

Same goes for al Queda as our troops remain in Iraq, and Obama ignores the plight of Palestinains by supporting Zionist Israel as according to the demands of his AIPAC campaign financers..

The end of al Queda will only come naturally by attrition (lack of enrollment) when the U.S. military bases on Muslim lands are removed, and when Zionist Israel grants autonomy and self determination to occupied Palestine, never before..

Bomb or invade another Muslim nation again and al Queda will only grow stronger and larger exponentially with every day of continued occupation..

Hip hip hooray for the Somali pirates, ol' Blackbeard would be proud of their achievements against such a large and powerful foe as U.S. empire and their capitalist minions!!

Death to corporate capitalism!!

Death to AIG corporate executive swindlers and thieves!!

Death to empire!!

Maybe collecting a bounty reward for extracting these six individuals from their hiding places and bringing them to Spanish soil to face war crimes charges would help expedite the process!!
by John Thielking
Saturday Apr 11th, 2009 11:56 AM
Obama is not really changing much of anything when it comes to the war on terror or the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. He is dropping the name "war on terror" and replacing it with "contingency [something or other]". He is relabeling the missions in Iraq, not committing to really withdrawing combat troops. I guess I should have paid attention to Nancy Pelosi when she said the troops should be "redeployed". That is exactly what Obama is doing, sending them back in on a different mission.
by Barbara Moody
(b_red [at] Saturday May 30th, 2009 7:17 PM
I may be wrong but, from what I have heard, the lawsuit that was brought by JEWEL against the NSA DEMANDED THE RELEASE OF ALL INFORMATION GATHERED BY THE NSA, and that is the reason, the sole reason, that Obama and his Justice Dept. refused to honor it.

I know that the NSA's warrantless wiretapping was, and is, unconstitutional in the extreme yet, I can not fault Obama for refusing to release ALL information. It is still a duty of the President to protect the lives of our information gatherers, and our military personell, who are in the field. Obviously, the release of all information would put lives in danger.

At this time, I do not believe that Obama is in the same category as Bush and I will not believe that until someone can present me with undeniable information that would lead me to revise that conclusion. You have not done that....yet.