“One Bomb Away”

Glenn highlighted a part of the Jeffrey Rosen on Jack Goldsmith article that I wanted to return to:

[Goldsmith] shared the White House’s concern that the Foreign IntelligenceSurveillance Act might prevent wiretaps on international calls involving terrorists.But Goldsmith deplored the way the White House tried to fix the problem, whichwas highly contemptuous of Congress and the courts. “We’reone bomb away from getting rid of that obnoxious [FISA] court,” Goldsmithrecalls Addington telling him in February 2004. [my emphasis]

Since I raised the question of why this piece got published early, I’ll point out one other timing detail.

The government just submitted a response to the ACLU’s motion to have the FISA Court’s two adverse rulings released. The whole debate is one that may free up documentation about the FISA program sooner rather than later, since the FISA Court technically owns the rulings in question, unlike almost all the other documents people have requested or FOIAed. The FISA Court is no doubt currently considering the government’s argument while it waits for the ACLU’s response, due on September 14.

You know–the FISA Court? The one Addington deemed "obnoxious"?

While I don’t think the ACLU motion is the reason for the early release of the Goldsmith article, I do find it amusing that the FISA Court will be considering the government’s arguments knowing full well that Addington has been running around anticipating their demise.

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