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James Clapper, EU Play-Acting, And Political Priorities

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Source: The Guardian

Fixations on denouncing Edward Snowden distract, by design, from the serious transgressions of those who are far more powerful

U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper
U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper (Getty Image)

The NSA revelations continue to expose far more than just the ongoing operations of that sprawling and unaccountable spying agency. Let's examine what we have learned this week about the US political and media class and then certain EU leaders.

The first NSA story to be reported was our June 6 article which exposed the bulk, indiscriminate collection by the US Government of the telephone records of tens of millions of Americans. Ever since then, it has been undeniably clear that James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence, outright lied to the US Senate -- specifically to the Intelligence Committee, the body charged with oversight over surveillance programs -- when he said "no, sir" in response to this question from Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden: "Does the NSA collect any type of data at all  on millions or hundreds of millions of Americans?"

That Clapper fundamentally misled Congress is beyond dispute. The DNI himself has now been forced by our stories to admit that his statement was, in his words, "clearly erroneous" and to apologize. But he did this only once our front-page revelations forced him to do so: in other words, what he's sorry about is that he got caught lying to the Senate. And as Salon's David Sirota adeptly documented on Friday, Clapper is still spouting falsehoods as he apologizes and attempts to explain why he did it.

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For the past 10 years, I was a litigator in NYC specializing in First Amendment challenges, civil rights cases, and corporate and securities fraud matters. I am the author of the New York Times Best-Selling book, How Would A Patriot (more...)

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The lot of them have been playing three brass monk... by Paul Repstock on Wednesday, Jul 3, 2013 at 4:36:18 PM
needs to be brought down. ... by Lois Gagnon on Wednesday, Jul 3, 2013 at 5:15:51 PM
Ah yes, I agree with you but hey! This is hardly n... by Martin Cohen on Wednesday, Jul 3, 2013 at 7:33:27 PM
Firing blanks? The Guardian, and Glenn Greenwald h... by Dave Lindorff on Thursday, Jul 4, 2013 at 10:33:41 AM
It's stuff down the pike that officials are partic... by Peter Duveen on Thursday, Jul 4, 2013 at 12:20:18 PM
This is nothing other than a wholesale submission ... by steve waterhouse on Thursday, Jul 4, 2013 at 12:14:56 AM
This is the result of efforts since at least WWII ... by Vietnam Vet on Thursday, Jul 4, 2013 at 10:41:25 PM