If this doesn’t run chills down your spine, you have to be sleeping!

Just catch these last few paragraphs.  There is a future beyond Brennan, Obama, Romney, all the prospective presidents whose names we might now foresee.  Having this in place, as well as laws that fail to define “terrorism” or “associated forces” and permit indefinite detention, even of citizens, and presumably killing them on presidential authority, is not consistent with American values as I’ve learned them.

“Said Brennan: “I think the president always needs the ability to do things under his chief executive powers and authorities, to include covert action.” But, he added, “I think the rule should be that if we’re going to take actions overseas that result in the deaths of people, the United States should take responsibility for that.”

One official said that “for a guy whose reputation is focused on how tough he is on counterterrorism,” Brennan is “more focused than anybody in the government on the legal, ethical and transparency questions associated with all this.” By drawing so much decision-making directly into his own office, said another, he has “forced a much better process at the CIA and the Defense Department.”

Even if Obama is reelected, Brennan may not stay for another term. That means someone else is likely to be interpreting his playbook.

“Do I want this system to last forever?” a senior official said. “No. Do I think it’s the best system for now? Yes.”

“What is scary,” he concluded, “is the apparatus set up without John to run it.””

via CIA veteran John Brennan has transformed U.S. counterterrorism policy – The Washington Post.

This Stands Well for Steps in a Cyberstrategy

Journalist Rebecca MacKinnon. Crop of original...
Journalist Rebecca MacKinnon. Crop of original source photo. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It is, best I recall, unprecedented for me to rely on another publication to express my views on this blog but this item in Foreign Affairs summarizes the history, situation, stakes, ironies and a possible set of steps forward that can stand for my view.

The U.S. global Internet freedom agenda will only succeed in the long run if the United States can find a way to live up to its own values and offer a vision — in practice — of what a digital future based in civil liberties can provide. So long as confusion reigns, there will be no successful global Internet agenda, only contradiction.

“A Clunky Cyberstrategy” by Rebecca MacKinnon in Foreign Affairs