UFO UpDates
A mailing list for the study of UFO-related phenomena
'Its All Here In Black & White'
Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2007 > Mar > Mar 29

Secrecy News -- 03/28/07

From: Steven Aftergood  <saftergood.nul>
Date: Wed, 28 Mar 2007 14:34:41 -0400
Fwd Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2007 08:21:13 -0400
Subject: Secrecy News -- 03/28/07


SECRECY NEWS
from the FAS Project on Government Secrecy
Volume 2007, Issue No. 34
March 28, 2007

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

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


**	EMBATTLED CRS DIRECTOR SPEAKS OUT ON EARMARKS
**	AIPAC COURT CONSIDERS "SILENT WITNESS" PROCEDURE
**	MEDICAL CERTIFICATION FOR UNMANNED AIRCRAFT PILOTS


EMBATTLED CRS DIRECTOR SPEAKS OUT ON EARMARKS

A Wall Street Journal column on March 26 reported that the
Congressional Research Service "will no longer respond to
requests from members of Congress on the size, number of
background of [budget] earmarks." The new CRS policy, the
Journal article alleged, "is helping its masters hide wasteful
spending."

"The article is replete with mischaracterizations of CRS work
and policies," wrote CRS Director Daniel P. Mulhollan in a memo
to all CRS staff. "Such attacks on our independence cannot go
unanswered."

Mr. Mulhollan defended his agency in a letter to the editor of
the Wall Street Journal, circulated with his March 26 memo. A
copy was obtained by Secrecy News.

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/crs032607.pdf

The Journal article "gratuitously alludes to issues related to
public access to CRS work," Mr. Mulhollan wrote in his letter.
"The restriction on publication of CRS work was established long
ago by Congress. CRS internal policies regarding distribution
of its products ensure compliance with congressional directives.
 We leave to Members and committees the discretion to share CRS
products how and when they wish."

"CRS has recently been subjected to much scrutiny because we
have not shied away from analysis of controversial issues,"
Director Mulhollan told CRS staff.


AIPAC COURT CONSIDERS "SILENT WITNESS" PROCEDURE

The forthcoming trial of two former officials of the American
Israel Public Affairs Committee who are charged with mishandling
classified information "won't be a closed trial," said Judge
T.S. Ellis III at a March 15 hearing, notwithstanding some
"hyperbolic" suggestions to the contrary.

But there is open question as to whether the prosecution may
employ something called the "silent witness" rule. That refers
to the practice of providing evidence to the defense and to the
jury, but withholding it from the public.

Such a procedure would amount to "closing" the courtroom in
effect, the defense argued, "because, once inside, the public
and press would not, in any meaningful sense, actually hear the
central evidence in the case."

The government proposal is "unworkable, prejudicial and
fundamentally unfair," the defense stated in a March 21 motion.
It "will not only make meaningful cross-examination of critical
government witnesses impossible, but will send a continuous
message to the jury that the information at issue is [national
defense information] deserving of protection -- the very issue
that the jury must itself decide."

"I have to resolve this significant issue about whether this is
really constitutional," Judge Ellis said on March 15. He
ordered additional briefs on the subject from both parties. The
defense brief, filed March 21, is here:

http://www.fas.org/sgp/jud/rosen032107.pdf

The government brief, due March 28, is not yet available. The
transcript of the March 15 hearing is here:

http://www.fas.org/sgp/jud/rosen031507.pdf

The closely-watched trial is scheduled to begin on June 4.

The Jewish Telegraphic Agency reported that "the FBI was
considering expanding its investigation into AIPAC and
classified information leaks in early 2005 when the pro-Israel
lobbying powerhouse fired two staffers already under scrutiny."

See "Defense: Feds eyeballed AIPAC until it cut off Rosen,
Weissman" by Ron Kampeas, March 27:

http://www.jta.org/cgi-
bin/iowa/news/article/20070327AIPACtrial.html


MEDICAL CERTIFICATION FOR UNMANNED AIRCRAFT PILOTS

Though it may sound like one hand clapping, an unmanned aircraft
must have a pilot -- just not on the plane. And someone has to
worry what may happen if the pilot becomes incapacitated.

"Although the term 'unmanned aircraft' suggests the absence of
human interaction, the human operator/pilot is still a critical
element in the success of any unmanned aircraft operation,"
according to a new study from the Federal Aviation
Administration. "For many UA systems, a contributing factor to
a substantial proportion of accidents is human error."

"Regarding the risk of pilot incapacitation, at least a few
factors distinguish this risk from manned aircraft," the study
noted. Since the pilot is on the ground, the effects of changes
in air pressure can be ignored. Also, many advanced UA systems
have procedures for communications failures or "lost data link,"
which is "functionally equivalent to pilot incapacitation." The
most advanced systems, such as Global Hawk, "will continue
normal flight whether a pilot is present or not."

The study therefore recommended adoption of a minimal medical
certification for pilots, including a waiver process that would
also permit handicapped persons to be certified. "This process
gives individuals who might not be able to fly manned aircraft
an opportunity to receive medical certification for flying an
unmanned aircraft."

See "Unmanned Aircraft Pilot Medical Certification
Requirements," Federal Aviation Administration, February 2007:

http://www.fas.org/irp/program/collect/ua-pilot.pdf



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

To SUBSCRIBE to Secrecy News, send email to
secrecy_news-request.nul
with "subscribe" in the body of the message.
ttp://www.fas.org/sgp/news/secrecy/index.html

Secrecy News is available in blog format at:
http://www.fas.org/blog/secrecy/

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


Listen to 'Strange Days... Indeed' - The PodCast

See:

http://www.virtuallystrange.net/ufo/sdi/program/


[ Next Message | Previous Message | This Day's Messages ]
This Month's Index |

UFO UpDates Main Index

UFO UpDates - Toronto - Operated by Errol Bruce-Knapp


Archive programming by Glenn Campbell at Glenn-Campbell.com