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News item

Is this sudden flood of cypherpunk mail this afternoon mean we're all  
avoiding doing any work before taking off for Thanksgiving? ;-)

AP news item in today's San Diego Union:

Headline: "CIA chief hints change needed in ban on probing Americans"

 	WASHINGTON--CIA Director Robert Gates says changes might be  
needed in the U.S. law that forbids the agency from collecting  
information about Americans or U.S. companies.
	Such changes might enable the CIA to better support the  
Justice Department and other law enforcement agencies, he said in an  
interview with the Associated Press.
	The idea grew out of a recent storm of accusations by  
Democrats in Congress, Justice Department officials and a federal  
judge that the CIA withheld information in the case of $5.5 billion  
lending scheme to Iraq by an Atlanta bank.
	[Gates said] the case of the Iraqi loans raises a broader  
issue of what the CIA is expected to do to aid law enforcement in  
such fields as financial crimes.
	Under current law, the CIA is strictly forbidden to collect  
information on Americans or American companies.
	"At some point it seems to me, very early on, we and  
Justice...and the Congress are going to have to...have some sort of  
serious discussion about whether there are changes in the law that  
are needed that will clarify some of the ambiguities and what we can  
and cannot do in support to law enforcement," Gates said.
	He did not elaborate.