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Supreme Court blocks challenge to anti-terrorism law

News Updates from Citizens for Legitimate Government

26 Feb 2013
http://www.legitgov.org/

Breaking: Senate votes to clear Hagel for confirmation vote 26 Feb 2013 Senators voted to end debate today on President Obama's nomination of Chuck Hagel to be the secretary of Defense. He now faces a formal vote on confirmation. Hagel's confirmation seems virtually assured, as Democrats control the Senate and none has said publicly they oppose him. A formal vote could come as early as Tuesday afternoon.

Supreme Court blocks challenge to anti-terrorism law 26 Feb 2013 One of the most controversial anti-terrorism laws passed in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks may be beyond normal judicial review, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday. In a 5-4 decision, the court's conservative justices ruled that lawyers, journalists, human rights activists and others lacked standing to challenge a law passed in 2008 that increases the government's ability to intercept international communications. The plaintiffs had contended that even the potential of government snooping -- which, they said, would violate the Fourth Amendment -- was forcing them to change the way they communicate with clients and sources. The question before the high court wasn't whether the law itself, passed near the end of the Bush administration, was constitutional. It was whether those challenging it even had the ability to find out.

Lawyers, journalists have no standing to challenge foreign surveillance law, SCOTUS rules 26 Feb 2013 A group of plaintiffs that includes lawyers and legal organizations has no standing to challenge a foreign surveillance law, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday in a 5-4 opinion. Justice [sic] Samuel A. Alito Jr. wrote the majority opinion finding that the plaintiffs had not established an injury in fact based on their assertion that their communications could be intercepted. The law as amended in 2008 authorizes surveillance of foreigners who are outside the United States, with advance approval of the "targeting procedures" by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. The American Civil Liberties Union, which filed suit on behalf of the plaintiffs, has said the 2008 law permits "dragnet surveillance."

'Obama to tell Netanyahu US gearing up for Iran strike' --During upcoming visit, president will convey message that window for American military operation opens in June, TV report says 25 Feb 2013 When he visits Israel next month, US President Barack Obama will tell Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that a "window of opportunity" for a military strike on Iran will open in June, according to an Israeli TV report Monday evening. Obama will come bearing the message that if diplomatic efforts and sanctions don't bear fruit, Israel should "sit tight" and let Washington take the stage, even if that means remaining on the sidelines during a US military operation, Channel 10 reported. Netanyahu will be asked to refrain from any military action and keep a low profile, avoiding even the mention of a strike, the report said, citing unnamed officials.

US firms hatched plot to topple Hugo Chavez - WikiLeaks 25 Feb 2013 WikiLeaks has revealed the participation of at least two American companies behind attempts to overthrow Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez. The hand of Washington was detected in actions of the Venezuelan opposition since 2006 and in its opposition campaign for the 2010 parliamentary elections. The leaked email messages, dating back to July 2004 and December 2011, were tracked to the Stratfor and Canvas companies that used students and other people in an effort to overthrow Chavez.

Manning headed back to court in Maryland 26 Feb 2013 A U.S. Army private accused of sending hundreds of thousands of classified documents to the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks is back in court for a four-day hearing that may address his attorney's motion to dismiss the charges against him. Pfc. Bradley Manning is expected to be in a Maryland court Tuesday when the hearing begins.

Concrete cracks won't factor into nuclear power plant relicensing 25 Feb 2013 (NH) The cracking of safety-related concrete structures at the Seabrook Station nuclear power plant has made a lot of news recently, but the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission has decided not to make the issue a formal part of the hearings on extending the plant's operating license until 2050. The reason given was based on a technicality rather than on a substantive decision, the agency confirmed. "The ASLB panel (Atomic Safety [sic] and Licensing Board, which adjudicates issues for the NRC) denied the contention because it was late-filed and, therefore, did not meet the timeliness criteria for such proceedings," NRC Public Affairs Officer Neil Sheehan stated. The attorney for the groups who were asking for the concrete degradation issue to be formally included in the proceedings, the Maine-based Friends of the Coast and the New England Coalition in Vermont, expressed frustration about this decision.

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