As you can imagine, it is rare for a law firm whose practice focuses on financial crimes and general criminal defense to advocate a criminal investigation and prosecution but this is one of those times.
The New York Times reported today that an investigation by the C.I.A.’s Inspector General concluded that five of its employees worked to penetrate the computer network used by the Senate Intelligence Committee overseeing the agency’s detention and interrogation program. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/01/world/senate-intelligence-commitee-cia-interrogation-report.html?ref=us&_r=0
Let’s be clear; the C.I.A. is America’s spy agency. By its very nature it operates in the dark, without the transparency required of other government agencies. In a republic, such a privilege must be scrupulously honored by the agency and jealously guarded by us, the governed. There is no margin of error – no room for deviation.
Given their enormous capability to operate in the shadows, CIA employees must strictly follow the law. The agency cannot be permitted to conduct covert operations and spy on the civilian leaders charged with its oversight; such a transgression must not be tolerated – ever!
For our republic to endure and for our freedoms to be preserved, we cannot allow a secret agency to exercise its powers against those charged with its oversight – to do so will inevitably lead to tyranny. We don’t have to go very far in the historical record to see how easily democracy can turn tyrannical. Russia for example, by allowing a high ranking former member of its secret police to assume unchecked power, went form an emerging republic to a near totalitarianism, where business people, journalists and artists are prosecuted and imprisoned for questioning the government.
We must not be silent. We must use all available means to demand action – tweet, post, write, tell your neighbors but do not be silent!
The response from the Department of Justice must be immediate, thorough and visible to all.