Wednesday, October 17, 2012

CIA's Ex-Con Code Thief Reflects On His Career

From NPR:

An elite team of CIA operatives flies overseas, breaks into foreign embassies and steals secret codes, all without leaving a trace. While that might sound like the plotline of a Hollywood film, former CIA officer Doug Groat conducted such missions until he questioned his superiors about sloppy procedures on one operation that almost cost him and his team their freedom or maybe their lives. The battle that ensued between Groat and the CIA led to charges of espionage and extortion and four years in prison. Doug Groat joins us now from member station WUOT in Knoxville. Nice to have you with us today."

CIA's Ex-Con Code Thief Reflects On His Career, National Public Radio, October 15, 2012

The CIA Burglar Who Went Rogue, Smithsonian Magazine, October 2012

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Standing to Challenge NSA Surveillance

Standing is a concept in American jurisprudence in which a party has the right to make a legal claim. In general, an individual or organization filing the suit must demonstrate that they have suffered an actual injury due to the conduct in question. The standing rule prevents, in many cases, lawsuits filed on behalf of others. The standing rule also prevents lawsuits by a party that has not suffered an actual injury, but the potential for injury exists. For instance, the fact that the National Security Agency is conducting a surveillance program, along with the mere possibility that a specific individual might be caught up in the dragnet, is potentially insufficient to meet the standing criteria without evidence that the specific individual actually was impacted by the surveillance. 

Before the United States Supreme Court this month is the case of Clapper v. Amnesty International USA, in which the plaintiffs seek prospective relief from the NSA surveillance program called "Stellar Wind". The following link is to a page maintained by the American Bar Association on the case.

Clapper v. Amnesty International USA

Friday, October 5, 2012

Torture Creep

"Why are more Americans accepting Bush-era policies than ever before?"

 Torture Creep by Amy Zegart, Foreign Policy, September 25, 2012