January 3, 2013
Re "It's 2013, when dreams may yet come true," Editorial, Jan. 1 I'd like to add the following wish to The Times' list: That a meaningful dialogue on stopping the abusive application of the state secrets privilege and related policies take place. We need as a start a grass-roots effort to get the equivalent of 2012's H.R. 5956 passed. Can you imagine if religious clergy, Boy Scouts leaders and educational institutions had the state secrets privilege doctrine to hide behind?
July 21, 2009 |
U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth has ruled that CIA officials committed fraud to protect a former covert agent against an eavesdropping lawsuit and may sanction as many as six who have worked at the agency, including former CIA Director George J. Tenet. According to unsealed court documents, Lamberth referred a CIA attorney, Jeffrey Yeates, for disciplinary action. Lamberth also denied the CIA's efforts under the Obama administration to keep the case secret because of what he called the agency's "diminished credibility" and the "twisted history" in the case.
September 16, 2007 |
On Aug. 15, before an overflow crowd at the federal courthouse at 7th and Mission in San Francisco, three judges from the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals listened to lawyers argue whether the once-obscure "state secrets privilege" gives the government an absolute right to withhold documents, bury evidence and block lawsuits.
October 11, 2007 |
Score one more for the White House, which may keep its secrets to the bitter end. On Tuesday, the Supreme Court refused to take up the case of El-Masri vs. United States.
February 15, 2009 |
Last Monday in a San Francisco courtroom, the Obama administration faced a crucial early test -- and, in the view of many liberal supporters, failed miserably. Four alleged victims of the government's "extraordinary rendition" program -- each of whom says he was seized, flown to a foreign country and tortured at the behest of the U.S. government -- were appealing the dismissal of their lawsuit against Jeppesen DataPlan Inc., the San Jose company that they say helped organize the flights.
October 31, 2012 |
Civil libertarians are upbeat after an argument in the Supreme Court this week over whether lawyers, activists and academics can challenge the constitutionality of a law authorizing the wiretapping of potential terrorists abroad -- who may be conversing or swapping emails with Americans. The plaintiffs, who carry on confidential conversations with foreign clients and sources, say the law chills them in the exercise of their rights. As is often the case, the civil liberties groups are pinning their hopes on Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, who has voted with liberals on the court in previous cases arising from the war on terrorism. Kennedy seemed receptive to the plaintiffs' argument that they have standing to sue because they fear that their confidential conversations with sources and clients are being monitored. “I think the lawyer would engage in malpractice if he talked on the telephone with some of these clients, given this statute,” Kennedy told Solicitor General Donald Verrilli.