Skip to main content

James Clapper
James Clapper is really sorry he willfully
misunderstood the question.
The Washington Post has a good rundown of the litany of "misleading, erroneous or simply false" statements from senior U.S. officials about the scope of the NSA's surveillance programs. Poster boy for administration liars is Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, who has written to the Senate to apologize for lying under oath to them when he told them point-blank the NSA wasn't collecting data on millions of Americans, even though it wasn't really his fault.
Acknowledging the "heated controversy" over his remark, Clapper sent a letter to the Senate Intelligence Committee on June 21 saying that he had misunderstood the question he had been asked.

"I have thought long and hard to re-create what went through my mind at the time," Clapper said in the previously undisclosed letter. "My response was clearly erroneous—for which I apologize." [...]

He made a new attempt to explain the exchange in his June 21 correspondence, which included a hand-written note to Wyden saying that an attached letter was addressed to the committee chairman but that he "wanted [Wyden] to see this first."

Clapper said he thought Wyden was referring to NSA surveillance of e-mail traffic involving overseas targets, not the separate program in which the agency is authorized to collect records of Americans’ phone calls that include the numbers and duration of calls but not individuals’ names or the contents of their calls.

Plausible? Hardly. Sen. Wyden (D-OR) submitted the question to Clapper's office the day before the hearing. Clapper had ample time to prepare for the question, and to ask Wyden for any necessary clarification. Additionally, of course, in his question Wyden didn't differentiate between the cell phone data collection program (under section 215 of the Patriot Act) and the NSA's internet surveillance program (under section 702). His question was broad: "Does the NSA collect any type of data at all on millions or hundreds of millions of Americans?" We now know, thanks to the leak of information by Edward Snowden and the subsequent declassification and public statements from the administration, that the NSA definitely does collect that data.

Clapper's answer was a lie, and that's supposed to be a felony offense. If we had a Congress that actually conducted oversight, it might still be.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Mon Jul 01, 2013 at 09:10 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Meteor Blades, felix19, paradox, Superskepticalman, nota bene, Chi, Timaeus, MouseThatRoared, hyperstation, Vico, Aspe4, LeftHandedMan, RFK Lives, MarkInSanFran, hubcap, niemann, TheMomCat, TracieLynn, Einsteinia, whenwego, ask, boadicea, roses, Nate Roberts, Bulldawg, RuralLiberal, inclusiveheart, zerelda, randallt, WisVoter, xxdr zombiexx, pontechango, bobdevo, marina, ek hornbeck, democracy inaction, Simplify, ChemBob, Laurence Lewis, reflectionsv37, eru, LNK, where4art, Burned, lotlizard, most peculiar mama, Steve in Urbana, rb608, Indiana Bob, Alan Arizona, martini, LeftOverAmerica, Showman, BachFan, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, rcbowman, cybersaur, koNko, KenBee, Knighterrant, Lefty Coaster, blueoasis, philipmerrill, gpoutney, el cid, sceptical observer, middleagedhousewife, onionjim, CA Nana, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, OHdog, NonnyO, ammasdarling, david mizner, mommyof3, dclawyer06, aliasalias, cyncynical, bobswern, millwood, Wreck Smurfy, Rumarhazzit, leonard145b, Empower Ink, JDWolverton, zerone, Johnny Nucleo, Youffraita, dadadata, jamess, No Exit, ashowboat, Gemina13, petulans, Notreadytobenice, luckylizard, rhutcheson, GrannyOPhilly, LaFeminista, Throw The Bums Out, Rick Aucoin, greengemini, ewmorr, Carol in San Antonio, maryabein, Methinks They Lie, WakeUpNeo, shopkeeper, JesseCW, shalca, Keith Pickering, Enzo Valenzetti, Just Bob, Crabby Abbey, TealTerror, shyewoods, Publius2008, slice, freesia, lexalou, trumpeter, IllanoyGal, muddy boots, Crider, Caddis Fly, Oilwellian, SouthernLiberalinMD, livingthedream, quill, OldDragon, anodnhajo, DeadHead, CharlesII, IndieGuy, 420 forever, 2thanks, This old man, Mr Robert, lunachickie, terrybuck, stvnjon, nuclear winter solstice, argomd, SixSixSix, Jabus, howabout, JosephK74, Icicle68, GreenMother, Demeter Rising, rigcath, Not A Bot, OldSoldier99, Liberty Equality Fraternity and Trees, patbahn

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site