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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.