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  1. #1
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    Powell Speaks Out on Domestic Spy Program

    Powell Speaks Out on Domestic Spy Program
    By STEVEN R. WEISMAN

    WASHINGTON, Dec. 25 - Former Secretary of State Colin L. Powell said on Sunday that it would not have been "that hard" for President Bush to obtain warrants for eavesdropping on domestic telephone and Internet activity, but that he saw "nothing wrong" with the decision not to do so.

    "My own judgment is that it didn't seem to me, anyway, that it would have been that hard to go get the warrants," Mr. Powell said. "And even in the case of an emergency, you go and do it. The law provides for that."

    But Mr. Powell added that "for reasons that the president has discussed and the attorney general has spoken to, they chose not to do it that way."

    "I see absolutely nothing wrong with the president authorizing these kinds of actions," he said.

    Asked if such eavesdropping should continue, Mr. Powell said, "Yes, of course it should continue."

    Mr. Powell said he had not been told about the eavesdropping activity when he served as secretary of state.

    He spoke on the ABC News program "This Week" about the disclosure, first reported in The New York Times, that Mr. Bush had authorized the National Security Agency to intercept communications by Americans without approval from a special foreign intelligence court.

    Though Mr. Powell stopped short of criticizing Mr. Bush, his suggestion that there was "another way to handle it" was another example of his parting company on a critical issue with the president he served for four years.

    This fall, Mr. Powell broke with the administration on the issue of torture, endorsing a move by Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona, to pass a measure in Congress banning cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment of detainees by all American authorities, including intelligence personnel. The White House at first opposed the measure but later accepted it.

    Since leaving office at the end of Mr. Bush's first term, Mr. Powell has been involved in several business and public service ventures, including the establishment of the Colin Powell Center for Policy Studies at City College of New York, his alma mater.

    On Iraq, Mr. Powell repeated earlier statements that differed somewhat from those of Mr. Bush, saying he did not know whether he would have advocated going to war with Iraq if he had known that the country had no stockpiles of illicit weapons.

    Referring to the case for going to war if there were no such weapons, Mr. Powell said he would have told the president, "You have a far more difficult case, and I'm not sure you can make the case in the absence of those stockpiles."

    Mr. Powell said he expected American troop levels to continue to go down in the coming year out of necessity, because it will become difficult to sustain the current high levels and because the effort to train Iraqis should be successful.

    The main worry in Iraq, he said, is the growth of semi-independent militias with allegiance to sectarian groups within the Iraqi military.

    Asked if the ethnic divisions in Iraq that were reinforced by the recent elections posed a threat of civil war, Mr. Powell said, "I think it is something we all have to be worried about."

  2. #2
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    Re: Powell Speaks Out on Domestic Spy Program

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Powell
    "My own judgment is that it didn't seem to me, anyway, that it would have been that hard to go get the warrants," Mr. Powell said. "And even in the case of an emergency, you go and do it. The law provides for that."
    Hi Lady Mod,

    It may appear to some that Colin Powell is "damning with faint praise." He does not say it is wrong out right, he just mentions that "it would not have been that hard" to get the warrants.

    Hmmm...makes you think, doesn't it?

    How slowly the worm turns, but turns just the same. ;)

    DeeDee1965

  3. #3
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    Re: Powell Speaks Out on Domestic Spy Program

    Quote Originally Posted by DeeDee1965
    Hi Lady Mod,

    It may appear to some that Colin Powell is "damning with faint praise." He does not say it is wrong out right, he just mentions that "it would not have been that hard" to get the warrants.

    Hmmm...makes you think, doesn't it?

    How slowly the worm turns, but turns just the same. ;)

    DeeDee1965
    Colin Powell a worm!?!?!?!

    Colin Powell has stood very strong one everything I have ever heard him claimed he believed. It was no secret at the time of the build up to the war in Iraq that he was not extremely excited about going in. He was very cautious in his statements, by that I mean he was often saying that this will not be as easy as it may appear on the surface.

    He did not make any claim that the actions of Bush where below board. He did say it would have been just as easy to get warrant's and that was an alternate method of accomplishing the same thing.

    I have always like Powell for the simple reason he seemed to always try to look for multiple solutions to the same problem. This, in my opinion, is a very smart way of planning for the future.

    I wonder what it would take to get him to run for office in 2008?

  4. #4
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    Re: Powell Speaks Out on Domestic Spy Program

    Quote Originally Posted by DeeDee1965
    He does not say it is wrong out right, he just mentions that "it would not have been that hard" to get the warrants.
    DeeDee1965
    DeeDee1965, you may have missed this part of Lady Mods' article..."I see absolutely nothing wrong with the president authorizing these kinds of actions," he said.

    Asked if such eavesdropping should continue, Mr. Powell said, "Yes, of course it should continue."


    Sounds pretty straight forward to me.

    RegE, I would vote for him, too!

  5. #5
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    Re: Powell Speaks Out on Domestic Spy Program

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Powell via:catch-22
    ..."I see absolutely nothing wrong with the president authorizing these kinds of actions," he said.

    Asked if such eavesdropping should continue, Mr. Powell said, "Yes, of course it should continue."


    Sounds pretty straight forward to me.

    That's it in a nutshell. No room for debate on this one. The author of the story did try to lead with something against the administration though. It's interesting to see how certain authors spin their webs to ensnare the readers and lead them towards their personal beliefs.

  6. #6
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    Re: Powell Speaks Out on Domestic Spy Program

    Quote Originally Posted by Raider
    That's it in a nutshell. No room for debate on this one. The author of the story did try to lead with something against the administration though. It's interesting to see how certain authors spin their webs to ensnare the readers and lead them towards their personal beliefs.
    ever hear of the sayin..takes one ta know one!/just askin!!

  7. #7
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    Re: Powell Speaks Out on Domestic Spy Program

    I wonder, if this is such a non-issue, why would Bush have lied and said the following:

    "Secondly, there are such things as roving wiretaps. Now, by the way, any time you hear the United States government talking about wiretap, it requires -- a wiretap requires a court order. Nothing has changed, by the way. When we're talking about chasing down terrorists, we're talking about getting a court order before we do so. It's important for our fellow citizens to understand, when you think Patriot Act, constitutional guarantees are in place when it comes to doing what is necessary to protect our homeland, because we value the Constitution."

  8. #8
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    Re: Powell Speaks Out on Domestic Spy Program

    For anyone who missed it, the President stated on April 20, 2004 that a court order was necessary to do wiretaps because "we value the Constitution". For anyone who failed to see the implication, the logical corollary would be that warrantless wiretaps were a violation of the Constitution.

    Bush, at the time he made this statement, had "authorized" warrantless wiretapping by the NSA on American citizens.

    For those who may have failed to recgonize it, he was lying through his teeth.

  9. #9
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    Re: Powell Speaks Out on Domestic Spy Program

    Quote Originally Posted by Yirmeyahu
    I wonder, if this is such a non-issue, why would Bush have lied and said the following:

    "Secondly, there are such things as roving wiretaps. Now, by the way, any time you hear the United States government talking about wiretap, it requires -- a wiretap requires a court order. Nothing has changed, by the way. When we're talking about chasing down terrorists, we're talking about getting a court order before we do so. It's important for our fellow citizens to understand, when you think Patriot Act, constitutional guarantees are in place when it comes to doing what is necessary to protect our homeland, because we value the Constitution."

    It is important to note that once again you are saying the President Lied, but in fact he did not. In the above comment he was CLEARLY speaking of the Patriot Act and does just what the President said.

    In later comments at other times he speaks of authorizations under FISA, which does not require court orders.

    Of course, if you want to continue to believe he lied, that is your right.

  10. #10
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    Re: Powell Speaks Out on Domestic Spy Program

    Quote Originally Posted by RegulationE
    It is important to note that once again you are saying the President Lied, but in fact he did not. In the above comment he was CLEARLY speaking of the Patriot Act and does just what the President said.

    In later comments at other times he speaks of authorizations under FISA, which does not require court orders.

    Of course, if you want to continue to believe he lied, that is your right.
    First of all:

    "Secondly, there are such things as roving wiretaps. Now, by the way, any time you hear the United States government talking about wiretap, it requires -- a wiretap requires a court order. Nothing has changed, by the way. When we're talking about chasing down terrorists, we're talking about getting a court order before we do so. It's important for our fellow citizens to understand, when you think Patriot Act, constitutional guarantees are in place when it comes to doing what is necessary to protect our homeland, because we value the Constitution."

    I'm not sure what's so difficult to see about this, but he explicitly stated that wiretapping requires a court order. At the same time, he had authorized the NSA to wiretap American citizens without a court order.

    By defintion, that's called a "lie".

    Now, you say this isn't a lie because he was talking about the Patriot Act. Yeah. So? You say this isn't a lie because FISA wiretaps don't require a court order. Oh, really? That's news to me.

    But let's assume for a moment that this was actually true, that FISA wiretaps don't require a court order. Go ahead and assume that were true. Now read his statement again. You honestly don't think this would be deceptive, even were that to be true?

    I mean, the guy said wiretapping requires a court order because "we value the Constitution", which means, as we all recognize, wiretapping without a court order would be a violation of the Constitution, all the while having "authorized" wiretapping without a court order.

    And you want to tell me he wasn't lying? I'm sorry, you'll have to try again.

  11. #11
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    Re: Powell Speaks Out on Domestic Spy Program

    If he wasn’t caught then it would not have been a lie, and he did not plan on being caught.

    You just have to learn to think like him, then it all makes sence. :rolleyes:

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