Our “Public Debate” about Drones Is a State Secret

By: Sunday July 3, 2011 6:00 pm

When Anwar al-Awlaki’s family sued for due process, the government invoked state secrets, even as Crazy Pete Hoekstra and a stream of anonymous sources have leaked details of the drone targeting of him for over a year. One of the things Robert Gates specifically invoked state secrets over is whether or not we’re engaged in military operations in Yemen. Another is details of our counterterrorism work with Yemen.


Teaching Our Polish Partners in Torture: State Secrets

By: Saturday June 4, 2011 11:00 am

I had been predicting for weeks before Obama went to Poland that the Poles would move to quash their investigation into the black site at which KSM and others were tortured.

And sure enough, that appears to be what happened.

Paul Cuts Deal, Patriot Act Likely Headed for Passage Before Expiration of Key Provisions

By: Thursday May 26, 2011 6:10 am

It appears that Rand Paul has reached some kind of deal on his insistence to get votes for his amendments to the Patriot Act. There will now be votes on the amendments, with a likely 60-vote threshold. But the expectation is that the amendments will fail, and final passage will be secured Thursday. That will be followed by a quick vote in the House, and then a flight of the bill to Europe so President Obama can sign it before a midnight deadline when the three provisions of the measure would expire. And you said Congress can never be efficient. They can when motivated!

Government Subpoenas James Risen for the Third Time

By: Tuesday May 24, 2011 4:03 pm

The government appears to hope three time’s a charm. The last two times they subpoenaed James Risen in the case of Jeffrey Sterling, Judge Leonie Brinkema quashed the subpoena. But they’re trying again, this time to get him to testify at Sterling’s trial.

SCOTUS: Government Can Use “State Secrets” to Hide Crimes

By: Monday May 16, 2011 9:10 am

In effect, SCOTUS’ decision not to take this case leaves in place state secrets precedent that allows the government to commit grave crimes, but hide behind state secrets.

Appeals Court Overturns Dismissal of Lawsuit Challenging Warrantless Spying

By: Tuesday March 22, 2011 8:35 am

A standard tactic of the last two Administrations has been to operate in secrecy and then accuse those who have been denied access and information of not having standing to sue over, in this case, wiretapping, because they don’t have evidence that they’ve been targeted. It’s a cynical technique, but a successful one, until now.

With David Kris Gone, DOJ Tries to Vacate Vaughn Walker’s FISA Opinion

By: Monday March 7, 2011 2:45 pm

What’s so horrible in Walker’s rulings that the government might entertain “letting the terrorists win” in exchange for vacating the rulings? It seems there are three possible parts of Walker’s July 2008 ruling the government might want vacated.

Our Government Has Been Declaring Children’s Nosebleeds a State Secret

By: Friday February 11, 2011 7:10 am

I really hope judges begin to show some spine on State Secrets. By now, the assumption should be the government is invoking State Secrets for some stupid reason.

Like an embarrassing nosebleed.

CIA Doesn’t Want You To Know It Gave Iran Nuclear Blueprints

By: Thursday January 6, 2011 1:50 pm

This all seems to be about the CIA’s efforts to prevent you from knowing that it gave Iran nuclear blueprints in 2000.

State Secrets Santa and SCOTUS

By: Saturday December 25, 2010 7:52 am

Amid all the holiday hustle, bustle and, on at least some of the lame duck session accomplishments, success of Barack Obama, it is good to keep in mind what a lump of coal his administration has been on civil liberties and privacy. Nothing has been more emblematic of the cancer they have been in this regard than the posture they have relentlessly fought for on unfettered and unilateral ability of the Executive Branch to impose the state secrets doctrine to shield the government from litigation, even when it is concealing blatant and wholesale government criminality.

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