The following letter appeared in The Record (July 26).
NSA surveillance violates Constitution
Regarding “Limiting NSA data collecting will harm us” (Other Views, July 23):
That was one of the most egregious columns I have read in decades. The author, a former Justice Department official, asserts that the National Security Agency must continue its blatantly unconstitutional program of metadata mining to keep the American people safe from terrorist attacks.
The author writes that “protecting the United States from foreign attack is the core mission of the federal government, and a catastrophic failure in that mission could threaten the liberties we all cherish.”
The attack on Americans at home and abroad is the result of blowback, the CIA’s term for the violent acts by young, Middle Eastern individuals, which are the direct consequence of the federal government’s interventionist policies in that part of the world. In short, these attacks will continue as long as our government believes it has the right to station troops in the Middle East and invade countries that are no threat to our national security.
By treating all Americans as potential terrorists at our airports and collecting all our communications, our government is trampling on our liberties. As James Madison warned us more than 200 years ago, “If tyranny and oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy.”
Fort Lee, July 24
The writer is a former candidate for governor and other New Jersey offices.