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Secrecy News -- 01/05/07

From: Steven Aftergood <saftergood.nul>
Date: Fri, 5 Jan 2007 14:17:51 -0500
Fwd Date: Sat, 06 Jan 2007 10:44:27 -0500
Subject: Secrecy News -- 01/05/07


SECRECY NEWS
from the FAS Project on Government Secrecy
Volume 2007, Issue No. 2
January 5, 2007

Secrecy News Blog: http://www.fas.org/blog/secrecy/

Support Secrecy News:
http://www.fas.org/static/contrib_sec.jsp


**	LAWSUIT AGAINST CIA DISMISSED ON STATE SECRETS GROUNDS
**	CRS VIEWS EPA LIBRARY CLOSURES
**	MORE FROM CRS
**	VARIOUS RESOURCES


LAWSUIT AGAINST CIA DISMISSED ON STATE SECRETS GROUNDS

Declaring that the need to protect government secrets overrides
all other considerations, a federal court yesterday dismissed a
lawsuit against the Central Intelligence Agency filed by family
members of a former CIA clandestine officer who alleged injuries
that are largely classified.

The CIA invoked the state secrets privilege in its motion for
dismissal, and the court said it had no choice but to grant the
Agency's motion.

Relatively little about the case -- captioned Jane Doe, et al v.
Central Intelligence Agency -- is on the public record. The
plaintiffs are the wife and children of a former CIA officer who
remains under cover. According to the heavily redacted
complaint, the officer was "summarily separated from his CIA
employment." He and his wife both suffered symptoms of severe
depression, but CIA "refused to provide any assistance, medical
or otherwise." The lawsuit sought compensation for loss of
income and other damages.

Last March, then-CIA Director Porter Goss invoked the state
secrets privilege in opposing the lawsuit.

"No procedures exist that can adequately safeguard the sensitive
classified information implicated in this case and prevent its
unauthorized disclosure during the course of litigation,"
Director Goss wrote.

Plaintiffs disputed that uncompromising assertion. It's "yet
another example of an abuse of the privilege," said Mark S.
Zaid, attorney for Jane Doe.

But yesterday the court sided with the CIA.

"Although the claims that Plaintiffs have attempted to litigate
are... very serious ones that appear to go to matters
fundamental to the lives of the plaintiff family members, the
Court is constrained to dismiss this case," wrote Judge Laura
Taylor Swain of the Southern District of New York in a January
4, 2007 order.

"Even the most compelling necessity cannot overcome the claim of
privilege if the court is ultimately satisfied that... secrets
are at stake," the Judge wrote, quoting from the 1953 Supreme
Court case U.S. v. Reynolds.

http://www.fas.org/sgp/jud/statesec/doe010407.pdf

An earlier stage of the Doe case was reported in "Citing
Security, C.I.A. Seeks Suit's Dismissal" by Julia Preston, New
York Times, April 18, 2006. Selected case files from Jane Doe et
al v. CIA are posted here:

http://www.fas.org/sgp/jud/statesec/index.html#doess

"Plaintiff Jane Doe alleges that she ... 'lives in constant
fear'," Judge Swain's new order noted in passing. But "the
reason for her alleged fear is redacted as classified."


CRS VIEWS EPA LIBRARY CLOSURES

Last October the Environmental Protection Agency closed five of
its libraries, including the headquarters library in Washington
DC, and limited public access at four others.

EPA said the closures were part of an ongoing restructuring and
that public demand for EPA records would be increasingly
satisfied online. Public interest groups and librarians warned
that valuable documentary resources were in danger of being lost
or destroyed.

A report from the Congressional Research Service fleshes out
some new details of the library closures and finds some cause
for concern.

"EPA determined that the utility of some of its libraries had
declined as the agency has made more information available
through the Internet, and as heightened security at its
facilities has led to fewer public visitors," CRS observed.

But "Which materials will be retained, dispersed, or discarded,
and the amount of time and funding needed to complete this
[restructuring] process, are uncertain."

See "Restructuring EPA's Libraries: Background and Issues for
Congress," updated January 3, 2007:

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/secrecy/RS22533.pdf


MORE FROM CRS

Some other recent products of the Congressional Research Service
that are not readily available in the public domain include the
following.

"U.S. Army and Marine Corps Equipment Requirements: Background
and Issues for Congress," December 20, 2006:

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/weapons/RL33757.pdf

"U.S. Arms Sales: Agreements with and Deliveries to Major
Clients, 1998-2005," December 15, 2006:

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/weapons/RL33758.pdf

"'Terrorism' and Related Terms in Statute and Regulation:
Selected Language," updated December 5, 2006:

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/terror/RS21021.pdf

"Incapacity of a Member of the Senate," December 15, 2006:

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/RS22556.pdf


VARIOUS RESOURCES

National Security Agency director Lt. Gen. Keith B. Alexander
answered dozens of questions for the record related to NSA
surveillance activities following a September 6, 2006 Senate
Judiciary Committee hearing on "FISA for the 21st Century." That
hearing record has not yet been published, but General
Alexander's 35-page response to Senators' questions is available
here:

http://www.fas.org/irp/congress/2006_hr/alexander-qfr.pdf

A new report from the Congressional Budget Office "examines the
costs and potential performance of four possible designs for a
Space Radar system." See "Alternatives for Military Space
Radar," Congressional Budget Office, January 2007:

http://www.fas.org/irp/program/collect/cbo-radar.pdf

"Joint Operation Planning" is a new publication from the Joint
Chiefs of Staffs that "reflects the current doctrine for
conducting joint, interagency, and multinational planning
activities across the full range of military operations." See
Joint Publication 5-0, December 26, 2006:

http://www.fas.org/irp/doddir/dod/jp5_0.pdf

A newly released opinion from the Justice Department Office of
Legal Counsel advises that the open meeting requirements of the
Federal Advisory Committee Act do not apply when government
officials consult non-governmental individuals (as opposed to
committees). Nor do they apply to government meetings with non-
governmental groups, says OLC, as long as the members of the
groups only provide their opinions as individuals, and not as a
collective. See "Application of Federal Advisory Committee Act
to Non-Governmental Consultations," Justice Department Office of
Legal Counsel, December 7, 2001 (released January 3, 2007):

http://www.fas.org/irp/agency/doj/olc120701.pdf

A conference entitled "Covering the New Secrecy: The Press and
Public Policy" sponsored by the Knight-Wallace Fellows will be
held at the University of Michigan on January 8:

http://www.mjfellows.org/press-policy/newSecrecy_poster.pdf



_______________________________________________
Secrecy News is written by Steven Aftergood and published by the
Federation of American Scientists.

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Secrecy News is archived at:
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Secrecy News is available in blog format at:
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SUPPORT Secrecy News with a donation here:
http://www.fas.org/static/contrib_sec.jsp

_______________________
Steven Aftergood
Project on Government Secrecy
Federation of American Scientists
web:  www.fas.org/sgp/index.html
email: saftergood.nul
voice: (202) 454-4691




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