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Sunday, July 22, 2012

Spooks turn tables on senator,
accuse him of hiding information
U.S. censors have granted a U.S. senator the right to make three critical statements but then reprimanded him for withholding information that would make spy agencies look better and told him he should include their comment.

In a letter to Sen. Ron Wyden, who has assailed what he sees as a misuse of surveillance powers granted to intelligence services, the office of the director of national intelligence lifted its censorship of the Senate slightly in order to permit the Oregon Democrat to make three statements, one of which said that there had been at least one abuse of constitutional authority.

"Because the three statements you asked us to review are fragmentary and incomplete, we believe this may convey an incomplete and potentially misleading understanding of what has transpired," wrote Kathleen Turner, chief of legislative affairs for the national intelligence director, in a letter dated July 20 and obtained by Danger Room.

The intelligence censors told Wyden he should amend his claims with their statement: "The government has remedied these concerns and the FISC" -- Foriegn Intelligence Surveillance Court -- "has continued to approve the collection as consistent with this statute and reasonable under the Fourth Amendment." The statute in question is a provision of the expanded Patriot Act.

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