Terrorist privacy rights caused 10 hour delay in hunt for kidnapped troops in Iraq


U.S. authorities racing to find three kidnapped American soldiers in Iraq last May labored for nearly 10 hours to get legal authority for wiretaps to help in the hunt, an intelligence official told Congress on Thursday.

The top U.S. spy agency, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, sent Congress a timeline detailing the wiretap effort as the Bush administration makes its case to wary Democrats for a permanent expansion of its authority to eavesdrop on the foreign communications of terrorism suspects.

"In order to comply with the law, the government was required to spend valuable time obtaining an emergency authorization ... to engage in collection related to the kidnapping," Ronald Burgess, principle deputy director to McConnell, said in a letter to U.S. Rep. Silvestre Reyes.

Reyes, a Texas Democrat, is chairman of the House of Representatives intelligence committee.

Director of National Intelligence Michael McConnell has been under fire from some Democrats in control of Congress who say misstatements have eroded his credibility. Some Democrats and civil liberties advocates say a temporary expansion of the eavesdropping authority passed in August threatens the rights of Americans and any permanent law needs more protections.

This is just what the Democrats want or worse. It demonstrates how ridiculous their terrorist privacy rights jihad is. Don't expect them to take responsibility for any of the delay though. Being a Democrats means never having to take responsibility for the consequences of their misguided policies.


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