October 10, 2009

Wasn't John Adams Against Treason and Sedition?

Justin Katz

I'm a little slow to this one, but inasmuch as it hasn't gotten much coverage, it's worth a little catch-up:

The Justice Department is investigating a group of lawyers working for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) for taking pictures of covert CIA agents at Guantanamo Bay and handing them over to known al Qaida operatives. The lawyers, representing several detainees charged with organizing the September 11, 2001, attacks, have been accused of participating in an elaborate scheme to "out" as many as forty covert CIA agents, by tracking them to their homes and photographing them.

The ACLU lawyers are accused of conspiring in what is being called the "John Adams Project," along with the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL), and using lists and data from "human rights groups," European researchers and news organizations that were involved in tracking international CIA-chartered flights and monitoring hotel phone records. The John Adams Project allegedly developed a list of 45 CIA employees, which the ACLU team tailed and photographed surreptitiously; often as they were leaving their homes.

The ACLU proclaims confidence "that no laws or regulations have been broken." The rest of us can increase our confidence that such advocates for "civil liberties" incline toward one side of a larger cultural struggle, with a decidedly wrong-for-you, right-for-us tilt.

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The ACLU people engaged in amking the identities of covert operatives public should be treated as traitors.The left doesn't care about these operatives naturally,but went into histrionics over Valerie Plame,who wasn't a covert operative when she was identified.She was also engaged in questionable behavior insofar as having her husband assigned to the project she was working on.
The ACLU won't be touched by this administration,kindred spirits as they are.

Posted by: joe bernstein at October 10, 2009 3:02 PM

Actually, John Adams' proudest moment, he said, of his legal career was his defense of British forces who fired upon Americans in the Revolutionary War. This is where the name for this group came from. He saw it as his duty as a lawyer to represent the accused, regardless of his personal feelings about any of them. Some, not enveloped in histrionics and an obsession over "treason" might see the similarities.

Posted by: Matt at October 10, 2009 4:57 PM

What part of "represent[ing] the accused" involves gathering information about U.S. intelligence officers and passing it onto a declared enemy of the United States?

Posted by: David at October 10, 2009 5:26 PM

Matt-the bottom line is that revealing an agent's identity can get them killed.
I wouldn't call that histrionics-it applies to undercover operations also-not necessarily involving national security,but more prosaic matters such as drugs.In narcotics opearions,the undercovers are often not known to other officers engaged in the same operation unless it is absolutely essential.

Posted by: joe bernstein at October 10, 2009 5:30 PM

The ACLU's position emphasizes the need to answer the question of whether the prisoners at Gitmo are "criminals" or "POW's".

If they are "criminals" then the ACLU has some justification. If they are POW's, then national security is paramount.

I regard them as POW's, this opinion does not seem to be widely shared. Of course, calling them POW's tacitly admits that we are "at war".

Posted by: Warrington Faust at October 10, 2009 9:33 PM

If we aren't at war with the terrorists,WTF are we at?
Of course if you recall neither the Korean War nor the Vietnam were TECHNICALLY wars either.If you were there the distinction didn't matter.
Treating these people as criminals makes as much sense as bobbing for French Fries.

Posted by: joe bernstein at October 10, 2009 9:45 PM

"The left doesn't care about these operatives naturally,but went into histrionics over Valerie Plame,who wasn't a covert operative when she was identified"

Great point. So it's acceptable to out some covert operatives but not others.

Now, how do they determine who goes in which category?

Posted by: Monique at October 10, 2009 9:51 PM

Monique-that's easy-whoever the traitorous ACLU deems to be politically correct-the ACLU is providing aid and comfort to an enemy in time of war-what is that?

Posted by: joe bernstein at October 11, 2009 5:35 AM

Sounds like treason, Joe.

In addition to that, it seems a tad ironic, not to say counterproductive to their very existence, for members of an organization founded on civil liberties to work to take away the civil liberties (isn't life a civil liberty?) of those working to protect the civil liberties of the entire country.

Posted by: Monique at October 11, 2009 3:22 PM

One can only hope these very same ACLU people are incinerated in the next terrorist incident.It would be poetic justice.

Posted by: joe bernstein at October 11, 2009 4:34 PM

When the CIA exposes one of its own in order to have him or her eliminated, it is not treason, it is patriotism. This is the way the world works.

Posted by: John Koenig at October 12, 2009 10:12 AM
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