Tuesday, August 28, 2007

 

A Stone's Throw from Jamie Gorelick's Glass House

For sheer chutzpah, it’d be tough to top Jamie Gorelick’s Op-Ed reaction to the Attorney General’s resignation in today’s Post. Therein, amidst the normal platitudes of where Justice needs to go from here (“Lead with values”, “Fight crime” etc.), she drops this little nugget:

“Maintain vigilance against terrorism. Use the tools the department has been given to help keep our country secure. The new National Security Division, for example, must work seamlessly with traditional crime-fighters.”

Now this is the same Jamie Gorelick who, while serving as Deputy AG under Janet Reno, issued the infamous Gorelick Wall memo wherein she established:

“…a set of instructions that will clearly separate the counterintelligence investigation from the more limited, but continued, criminal investigations.”

Later, in one the more remarkable bits of political casting, she was included on the 9-11 Commission to help determine what went wrong. Of course, some critics suggested that, in light of her memo, she should be giving testimony vice taking it. Instead, in the midst of the commission’s work, she wrote an Op-Ed defending her memo.

“First, I did not invent the "wall," which is not a wall but a set of procedures implementing a 1978 statute (the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA) and federal court decisions interpreting it.”

But in her memo, she described these procedures thusly:

“These procedures, which go beyond what is legally required, will prevent any risk of creating an unwarranted appearance that FISA is being used to avoid procedural safeguards which would apply in a criminal investigation.”

She also writes about respecting rights. The Branch Davidians had no comment.

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