The review of US surveillance programs which Barack Obama promised would be conducted by an “independent” and “outside” panel of experts looks set to consist of four Washington insiders with close ties to the security establishment.
The president announced the creation of the group of experts two weeks ago, in an attempt to stem the rising tide of anger over National Security Agency surveillance techniques disclosed by the whistleblower Edward Snowden.
Obama trumpeted what he said would be a “high-level group of outside experts” tasked with assessing all of the government’s “intelligence and communication technologies”.
However a report by ABC News, which has not been denied by the administration, said the panel would consist of Michael Morell, a recent acting head of the CIA, and three former White House advisers…
In addition to Morell, who was deputy director of the CIA until just three months ago, the panel is believed to consist of former White House officials Richard Clarke, Cass Sunstein and Peter Swire.
None responded to requests for comment, however sources close to Sunstein and Swire said they understood them to have been selected. A formal White House announcement is expected soon.
So much for White House-level Truth in Advertising. This kind of kiss-ass behavior would have been roundly condemned if he pulled this crap in the first months of his first-term. Now, it’s just more of the same old, same old.
RTFA for the details. There are no thrills and chills from qualitative leaps into protecting citizens’ constitutional rights.