Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Terrorist Surveillance

Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales: Just after dawn on September 11th, 2001, I flew out of Dulles Airport less than an hour before the departure from the same airport of American Airlines Flight 77, the plane that was hijacked and crashed into the Pentagon later that morning ... The open wounds so many of us carry from that day are the backdrop to the current debate about the National Security Agency’s terrorist surveillance program. This program, described by the President, is focused on international communications where experienced intelligence experts have reason to believe that at least one party to the communication is a member or agent of al Qaeda or a terrorist organization affiliated with al Qaeda.

It seems that everyone who has heard of the President’s actions has an opinion ... I’ve noticed that through all of the noise on this topic, very few have asked that the terrorist surveillance program be stopped. The American people are, however, asking two important questions: Is this program necessary? And is it lawful? The answer to each is yes.

Read the full text of today's speech at Georgetown University Law Center.