Saturday, February 11, 2006

Jimmy Carter's Warrantless Prosecution.

The worst president in US history (i.e. Jimmy Carter) was also a fan of warrantless surveillance of people within the United States.

HT: to Powerline. The case dating back to 1977 involved two people, one man known as David Truong and the other Ronald Humphrey. Their goal was to pass information to the Vietnamese during the Paris Peace Negotiations in 1977. The courier that Truong used in Paris to pass the information to the Vietnamese was a CIA agent. This instigated warrantless (though approved by the attorney general Griffin Bell. (details of the case were obtained from and may be found on pages 9 & 10 of George P. Varghese's A SENSE OF PURPOSE: THE ROLE OF LAW ENFORCEMENT IN FOREIGN INTELLIGENCE SURVEILLANCE a document that appears hostile to the government).

In the end the Truong's conviction was upheld by the courts. My understanding of the situation though is this case was decided incorrectly. The USA was not in a state of war with Vietnam and hence the case should have been treated more as a criminal case.

However, this shows that Jimmy Carter's bleating at the King funeral is rank hypocrisy.

There exists an important difference between then and now. Then we were not at war, now we are at war and there are hostile entities determined to attack the United States of America. The NSA wiretaps as long as they are targeting foreign agents or agents acting on behalf of hostile entities are completely legal.

We come back to the hot war of WWII. Our nation monitored Japanese communications of all sorts and was listening to the Japanese diplomatic talk real time (i.e. we had cracked their diplomatic codes), was that unconstitutional? Should FDR have sought a warrant for that? Its absurd and that is what the shriekers are yelling for now.