Feb 16 2008
The FISA wars have become surreal as paranoid and delusional liberals panic about non-existent risks to civil liberties (all surveillance activities are reviewed by many organizations and the courts to ensure there is no abuse). Their made-for-TV juvenile fears of being listened in on have caused them to demand all surveillance, even that surveillance focused solely overseas. Why? Because much of the world digital communications flows through US owned assets. And technology neophytes don’t understand that foreign and domestic traffic is easily differentiated and therefore does not require judicial review to ensure separation. I don’t know a single judge who is technically savvy enough to know if communications are being separated or not – so judicial review is a joke.
Mike McConnell, head of National Intelligence, has this to say about the dangers the democrats have put us in by allowing all the changes we have made to FISA since 9-11, which have kept us safe, to lapse and be undone in one sad day of political opportunism:
Some have claimed that expiration of the Protect America Act would not significantly affect our operations. Such claims are not supported by the facts. We are already losing capability due to the failure to address liability protection. Without the act in place, vital programs would be plunged into uncertainty and delay, and capabilities would continue to decline. Under the Protect America Act, we obtained valuable insight and understanding, leading to the disruption of planned terrorist attacks. Expiration would lead to the loss of important tools our workforce relies on to discover the locations, intentions and capabilities of terrorists and other foreign intelligence targets abroad. Some critical operations, including our ability to adjust to dynamic terrorist threats that exploit new methods of communication, which sometimes requires assistance from private parties, would probably become impossible. And the difficulties we face in obtaining this essential help from private parties would worsen significantly if the act expires or is merely extended without addressing this issue. Without long-term legislation that includes liability protection, we will be delayed in gathering — or may simply miss — intelligence needed to protect the nation.
These circumstances can be avoided. The Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, after an in-depth review of our operations, recognized on a bipartisan basis the importance of providing liability protection to those who assisted our nation in a time of great need. The committee’s report stated that “without retroactive immunity, the private sector might be unwilling to cooperate with lawful government requests in the future without unnecessary court involvement and protracted litigation. The possible reduction in intelligence that might result from this delay is simply unacceptable for the safety of our Nation.”
Emphasis mine, but the statement comes from a Democrat led Senate committee and had overwhelming support from both Dems and Reps. Clearly there is concern that we just had a blindfold put over our eyes by a shrill and politically paranoid House Leadership who spend more time and energy fighting George Bush than al-Qaeda and terrorists. My previous thoughts on this debacle are here and here.
But right now is a really bad time to be blinded or delayed in getting our eye (or ears) on targets. That is because something is brewing in the ME with the assassination of a Hezbollah leader who is touted as the original Bin Laden. I discussed this horrific nexus of events in a previous post which showed why having the Democrat led House impair our defenses was putting our forces in Iraq and around the world at grave risk.
The news surrounding the result of this assassination are disturbing. First off we see Syria meeting with terrorists groups right after the assassination – why would they meet with all these groups which were reported to be preparing attacks on neighboring Arab states? One target could be Iraq and our forces there.
We see Jews around the world on high alert for an attack, which could set the ME back into conflict.
Given all these threats to our forces overseas and our allies in the ME one would think the Democrats could put aside their Bush Derangement Syndrome and wake from their silly delusional paranoia that the entire US military complex is focused on defeating liberals here in the US. But somehow they cannot wake up from their little fantasy world were the US is at war with them and not with al-Qaeda. If they can pull themselves together and focus on the real enemy overseas then America will relegate them to the dustbin of history – gladly.