Report: US domestic surveillance program began within weeks of 9/11 attacks

The warrantless wiretapping program initiated under the Bush administration began within a few weeks of 9/11, according to a report recently released to Congress and compiled by intelligence agencies, the Pentagon, and the DoJ:
The report, mandated by Congress, provides context to information that has been leaked in press accounts and buttressed by congressional testimony and in books authored by former officials involved in the surveillance effort.

The report notes that several members of Congress -- including then-House Intelligence Committee Chairman Nancy Pelosi -- were briefed on the program on October 25, 2001, and a total of 17 times before the program became public in 2005.

Among other things, the report also cites a Justice Department conclusion that "it was extraordinary and inappropriate that a single DOJ attorney, John Yoo, was relied upon to conduct the initial legal assessment of the (surveillance program)."

Domestic surveillance program began soon after 9/11, intelligence agencies say (CNN)

Hey, did we mention that Yoo is still employed at UC Berkeley?


  1. Report Says Wiretaps Got Too Little Legal Review — NYT

    Yup, they did get too little legal review. In order to prevent this from happening again, it would be a good idea if we made some sort of foundational document with a section guaranteeing the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

    Oh. We already have one of those?

  2. As I understand it, surveillance actually began shortly after Bush took office, well before 9/11.

  3. Tell us more, #7 anonymous. Use Tor. I think we’re talking about the internet, not just phone traffic.

  4. Nancy Pelosi was not the House Intelligence Committee Chairman in 2001, she was the ranking minority member. Porter Goss (R-Florida) was the chairman at the time.

    In 2001 the House and Senate were both controlled by Republicans and all investigations within each committee were controlled by Republican chairmen. Pat Roberts (R-Kansas) kept any report from his committee from being released until 2006.

  5. or it was already going on for a long time and was partially revealed when a convenient excuse “emerged”.

  6. Yeah Porter Goss….and you know what he was doing the morning of 9/11? Having breakfast with Mahmoud Ahmad, the alleged money man behind Atta and company.

    “”Was it an ‘intelligence failure’ to give red carpet treatment to the ‘money man’ behind the 9-11 terrorists, or was it simply ‘routine’?

    On the morning of September 11, Pakistan’s Chief Spy General Mahmoud Ahmad, the alleged “money-man” behind the 9-11 hijackers, was at a breakfast meeting on Capitol Hill hosted by Senator Bob Graham and Rep. Porter Goss, the chairmen of the Senate and House Intelligence committees.
    “When the news [of the attacks on the World Trade Center] came, the two Florida lawmakers who lead the House and Senate intelligence committees were having breakfast with the head of the Pakistani intelligence service. Rep. Porter Goss, R-Sanibel, Sen. Bob Graham and other members of the House Intelligence Committee were talking about terrorism issues with the Pakistani official when a member of Goss’ staff handed a note to Goss, who handed it to Graham. “We were talking about terrorism, specifically terrorism generated from Afghanistan,” Graham said.””

  7. A little bit of Devil’s advocacy here…

    Legal and constitutional issues aside, if the warrantless wiretapping was actually used to do what ‘they’ contend it was (discover and intercept terrorists operating in the US), getting it up and running in a few weeks is a bit of an achievement where government bureaucracy is concerned.

    I’m sure there are plenty of hawks who are trumpeting this report as a triumph of the spirit of bi-partisan efficiency in the wake of a national tragedy.

    Not my opinion mind you. Just trying to rationalize what will be going through the mind of the ‘patriot’ who’ll be strapping me down to the waterboard for being a doubleplusungood thoughtcriminal.

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