I do not and will not support any surveillance activities that circumvent established processes for their lawful authorization. I believe in the importance of independent monitoring, including by Congress, to prevent abuses and protect civil liberties.Ah, civil liberties. And regarding these and basic human rights, you know those things that America has been respected for upholding in past times, Blair said:
The intelligence agencies of the United States must respect the privacy and civil liberties of the American people, and they must adhere to the rule of law.He added that torture is “not moral, legal or effective” and said any interrogation program would have to comply with the Geneva Conventions, the Convention against Torture and the Constitution.
And lastly, what impressed me most was Blair will not simply sugarcoat his message and try to please the president by providing intelligence he thinks the president wants to hear. Instead, he said:
There is an obligation to speak truth to power.He added that he would honestly present “unpleasant” facts to the president.
This sort of openness and honesty is going to dismay the incurious crowd.