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FBI breakup? Consider source

March 25, 2007

Re "Break up the FBI," Opinion, March 21

How wonderful -- advice on how to run the FBI from John Yoo, the Bush administration's former torture cheerleader. Yoo ascribes the failings of the FBI's process for issuing national security letters to agency management. However, administration officials to whom the FBI director ultimately reports have made no secret of their belief that Americans can be placed under surveillance without requiring a warrant. If the administration respected legal requirements for obtaining warrants before surveillance, I would think the FBI would be run in a manner consistent with that belief. Yoo blames the FBI for carrying out what the administration had been wanting to do all along.

Yoo alludes to the FBI's shortcomings in understanding and preventing Al Qaeda attacks. Conveniently, Yoo neglects to mention the Aug. 6, 2001, memo, "Bin Laden Determined to Strike in U.S.," which was included in the president's daily briefing. The real problem was that the administration ignored these warnings.

ALLEN NIKORA

Los Angeles

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In providing Yoo's credentials, you neglected to mention why he will be remembered for the rest of his life, namely his memos while part of the U.S. Department of Justice that argued for the legality of torture and that enemy combatants could be denied the protection of the Geneva Convention. Anything he proposes should be seriously questioned, as should his teaching at UC Berkeley's law school.

HENRY J. PINCZOWER

Los Angeles

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Yoo, in his fine Op-Ed, forgets a monstrous oversight on the part of the FBI: Its Web page on Osama bin Laden fails to mention the 9/11 attacks! This may be worth another whole column, or perhaps a quick investigation by The Times.

DAN NOeL

Costa Mesa

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