Fake Terrorism

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The Washington Post reports on yet another bit of intelligence community overzealousness:

The FBI illegally collected more than 2,000 U.S. telephone call records between 2002 and 2006 by invoking terrorism emergencies that did not exist or simply persuading phone companies to provide records, according to internal bureau memos and interviews. FBI officials issued approvals after the fact to justify their actions.

….”We should have stopped those requests from being made that way,” [FBI general counsel Valerie Caproni] said. The after-the-fact approvals were a “good-hearted but not well-thought-out” solution to put phone carriers at ease, she said.

….FBI officials said they are confident that the safeguards enacted in 2007 have ended the problems.

Good hearted! And anyway, the FBI is confident it won’t happen again. Nothing to see here. Go about your business, citizens.

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FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2020 demands.

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