tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN May 11, 2016 2:44am-3:44am EDT
in 2007, his was put in a -- the cells water so so contaminated they had to filter the water with their socks. there were harassment by the prisoners in the same cell, and puts a lot of stress with constant observation and surveillance from the government during hi jail time. you mentioned he was beaten by thugs in the they beat him around the face were his teeth broken, did it require any kind of medical attention? [speaking vietnamese]
and he also gave me a bible to give too my husband while he is imprisoned. however, when i brought the bible, it was denied, so my husband never received the bible. in addition, the embassy has mentioned that i could meet with him at any time. >> just to make a couple final observations and ask if you have anything further that you'd like to say. i can assure you we will continue our effort. i see dr. tan from s.o.s. is here today. i met, as i mentioned earlier
, your husband in hanoi on a human rights trip in 2005 at his law offices. even though he spoke glowingly about his vision of a vietnam where everyone possessed fundamentally recognized human rights, there was an absence of malice on his part towards the people and the government. government,that the as you have pointed out, has cited article 88 of vietnam's penal code of conducting propaganda against the state, i was with him privately -- as a matter of fact, some of the people who were en route were detained and not allowed to go to his law office that day to meet with me, but there was no propaganda against the state. there was a love for the vietnamese people that was very deep and very profound, which i found just -- i was almost
speechless how he could have endured so much, known about so much wrongdoing yet he spoke about human rights in such clear terms and had such a clear purpose about him. the vietnamese government needs to know we are inspiredly nguyen van dai, and with growing numbers of members of parliaments, congresses will rally to his defense. your testimony has sent a clear message to the world not just at shall venue, but every elsewhere you have spoken, how can a government do what they're doing to your husband, who only desires the best for the country vietnam. so you have have been an inspiration and he has been an inspiration. when i met with mr. dai, and dr. tong a year later here, again --
in my office, i was touched with that absence of malice. he did not engage in tirades against vietnam or his government. he spoke about defending human rights, and caring for the disenfranchised, the people of faith, which i found just incredible, and i do hope that that is not lost. there are always reformers in any dictatorship or any repressive government. they need to know when he's away from them, talking to members of parliament or congress, in his office or washington, his message was one of hope for the people of vietnam, and so i want you to know what an inspiration your presence here is today. if president obama were sitting here where i'm sitting, or if the prime minister of vietnam was sitting here, what would you say?
>> translator: if the president was sitting in front of me, i would plead with him to help the people of vietnam. when he fights for human rights in vietnam, he helps the people. the people of vietnam have suffered a lot through all these years of war, and now if the president that is what i ask for. the reason they arrested my husband and now i'm asking for his release while the president is there, is because he represents a symbol of
translator: i would like to present to you, mr. chairman and the u.s. congress, that i would like to plead the case of my husband. i did not understand why he was arrested under penal code article 88 when he is a human rights activist for nonviolent movements. and also when they came to the house, they took away the issue of civil society that was published by the u.s. embassy in
vietnam. they also took away any materials that my husband has from the united nations human rights council especially even the symbol of the dove which my husband believes it represents peace and nonviolent movement for human rights. they took everything, envelopes, papers, anything that has that symbol on it. and then one particular thing that i would like to point out is all the t-shirts that has the word "hong kong today, vietnam tomorrow" were also confiscated as an artifact to be used against my husband. vietnamese]
this is very important. it is because back in 2007, i had written over hundreds of complaints to different agencies and never heard anything back. this time i have tried the same written many complaints and also visited many of the agencies just to try to see if anyone would respond to my request. and none of them had responded in any way verbally or writtenly to me and i have met with a lot of obstructions and ignorance from these agency. in addition i feel that because if i could go outside at my own risk and raise this voice to the world, then i would be able to present my husband case so that more people would know about a situation in vietnam and my husband is just one of the many people who are in similar situation.
>> translator: just to recount what happened in 2007, the lawyer only had seven days to prepare for his trial back then. specifically when i went to the investigation unit, they had sent the papers to the judicial office, but there is no clear evidence against my husband at that time. so, in fact, i'm very worried about similar situation this time. [speaking vietnamese]
translator: ia mm really worried that if that repeats, the lawyers for dai only has a few days just like the previous time, then there is not enough time for them to prepare the trial for dai. [speaking vietnamese] translator: so, i would like to request that my husband be released unconditionally and immediately. but encase he goes to trial, i would really like a fair trial and also for his lawyers, to have the time to prepare for his case.
[speaking vietnamese] translator: thank you, chairman smith, for holding this hearing. please accept my deep gratitude and also to all the staff members who have made this possible. i really appreciate all of your caring and support throughout this very difficult time for myself, my husband and my family. i would like to know as a
request weather, mr. chairman, together with the other members of congress, could write a letter to president obama asking for his response. first, in this hearing, but also the other requests that have been put in my statement previously. >> thank you. we will be more than happy to end your statement and a letter encouraging the president and an appeal to the president to raise your husband's case and that of other prisoners of conscience in a specific fashion. mention in aque windup statement or some generality. there needs to be specific requests made so that we can gauge whether or not vietnam is about to move in the right direction or continues its deterioration when it comes to human rights. there are a number of areas where human rights violations are worsening. human trafficking, religious freedom, and the administration could today, designate vietnam
as a cpc country, country of particular concern. if the facts are warranted. they could also be known as a three country when it comes to egregious violations of sex and labor trafficking, especially sex trafficking in vietnam. so, the president has tools in his toolbox. we hope that he uses them. we will send as per your request, your testimony and your strong appeal backed up by our strong appeal. we'll do it immediately. and, again, i hope the president is specific. just some general statement about human rights doesn't cut it. it hasn't in any other country around the world. it hasn't in vietnam. he needs to be specific. so, i want to thank you, again, for your very brave testimony. thank you for your husband's tremendous personal sacrifice for the cause of vietnam human rights and religious freedom.
he is a truly remarkable man, as are others who are fighting this battle with a nonviolence and with faith. know that our prayers are with you and with him. we are in solidarity with him, i can assure you. i would like to note for the record that we will be having a follow-up hearing to this hearing in mid-june, the latter part of june, june 23 or so. we will be assessing the president's trip and whether or not any progress was indeed made. so again, i want to thank you so very much for your testimony. and dr. binh, thank you for your very fine translation. the hearing is adjourned. thank you.
any more facts or something that you never heard before about the human rights situation in vietnam? >> well, it is deteriorating, and that's very troubling. after the world trade organization, the bilateral agreement as well, there was great expectation. i was frankly, not that that things would happen, but there were a lot of people that thought vietnam would turn the corner and start respecting human rights. precisely the opposite has happened. and they're in a -- unfortunately in a dive, a nosedive when it comes to respecting religious freedom, other fundamental human rights and the has got to change. you know, vietnam, the people of vietnam are wonderful people. better than what they are getting from their own government. they deserve freedom and democracy. thank you. >> thank you very
much. >> nice to see you. thank you. thanks for organizing. i would love to. >> i'm so sorry. >> okay. >> who is the point staff member? >> this guy. mark nulty. mark. >> thank you. >> hey, how are you? >> nice to meet you. >> good to see you. >> nice to see you. >> they work with this guy. >> yeah, yeah. >> yeah, yeah. >> thank you. >> sure, thanks. >> so, we'll get back to you. >> yeah, thanks.
>> c-span's "washington journal," live every day with news and policy issues that impact you. this morning, republican congressman tome cole joins us to discuss the meeting between paul ryan and donald trump. he will also talk about disaster relief in the wake of this week 's deadly storms. will be onry meeks to talk about issues before the financial services and foreign affairs committees. he sits on both committees. he will also discuss the
upcoming election. additionhe latest explores new technology that could eradicate malaria in about one year. we will be joined by the magazine's bio medicine senior editor. be sure to watch the c-span "washington journal," coming up at 7:00 a.m. this morning. join the discussion. >> on capitol hill tomorrow, the senate committee looks into the new overtime rules and the potential impact on small business. we take you there at 9:30 a.m. eastern on c-span 3. the foreign amendments act is set to expire at the end of 20 cementing. -- end of 2017. senate judiciary committee held a hearing on the law and
how much of it should be renewed. intelligence specials and civil liberties advocates testified at this two hour hearing. [inaudible] [inaudible] >> today i'm going to introduce some witnesses first and then i will make my opening statement. i think senator leahy is on his way and i would like him to make his opening statement before he received testimony from the witnesses. our first witness is kenneth wayne steen, he is up partner.
[inaudible] where he serves as chair of the firm's white-collar defense and investigative group. before that he worked for the 19 years at the department of justice including serving as u.s. attorney for d.c. in the first citizen attorney general for national security. he concluded concluded his government service in 2008 serving as a homeland security advisor to george w. in that capacity he coordinated the nation's counterterrorism infrastructure and disaster response and recovery efforts. he has an undergraduate degree from the university of virginia and his law degree from berkeley.
the second witness, matthew olson, olson, president of consulting at iron net cyber security from 11 --dash 14 he served as director from national counters and center under president obama, prior to that he served as general counsel for national security for the good time a task force and spent more than 18 years at the department of justice including serving as a deputy assistant attorney general oversee national security division. mr. olson is currently a lecture at harvard law school on national security law practice, undergraduate degree from virginia and the university of virginia and law degree from harvard. our next witness he codirects the center for justice and national security program.
before that she served as counsel senator feingold on this committee is trial attorney in the federal program branch civil division branch. she a law degree from yale law school. next witness is david medina. chairman of the privacy and civil liberties oversight board. before that he was attorney fellow for the security exchange commission from oh 222012 he practiced law firm in washington. from 92 until 2000 he served as associate director for financial practices at the ftc. he has his undergraduate does degree from hampshire college and law degree from the university of chicago.
our final witnesses misprint. she served on the privacy and civil liberties oversight board since 2012. has served as vice president and chief counsel for regulatory litigation at the u.s. chamber litigation center and practice of law at two firms in washington. she is also served as assistant attorney general for legal policy at the department of justice and associate counsel in the office of white house. she has her undergraduate degree from the university of minnesota morris and her law degree from harvard. most importantly she has been an intern in my office and she is from allah iowa. palayou ought to clap that. i'm going to make a statement now and then senator leahy will be here and i will let the witnesses speak. almost exactly
66 months ago our nation's oldest ally, france suffered the deadliest attack on its soil since world war ii. in a series of coordinated suicide bombings, mass shooters and hostages taken across paris isis held 130 people and people and injured 160. the president of france refer to that as an act of war. a month or or so later in december, the united states sustained the most deadly terrorist attack on our soil since september 11, 2001 in san bernadino. a couple of inspired by isis up and fired on an office holiday party killing 14, injuring 22 more. a few months after that, isis struck again in brussels, the home of nato's headquarters on march 20's second, it marked launched a series of court made
by means at an airport that killed 32 and injured more. these attacks underscore that one of our core responsibilities of our government is to ensure those that protect us every day including the intelligence committee have the tools to keep us safe. these tools must adapt about the changing technological landscape and the evolving security threats but at the same time the rights and liberties in our constitution are consonants duty as of this committee to be insured that they internal matter what. section seven oh two of the amendments act which provides the government the authority to collect the electronic communications of foreigners outside the united states will compel assistance with the
american companies sits at the intersection at these responsibilities. in 2008, after much debate and discussion, this law was passed by congress and signed by president bush. in 2012, it 12, it was reauthorized by congress without any changes and with president obama's strong support. from all accounts, it is proven to be highly valuable in helping to protect the united states and our allies. moreover, the privacy and civil liberties oversight board and many other federal courts have found section seven oh two constitutional inconsistent with the fourth amendment. the questions and concerns persist for some about its effect on our civil liberties. most of these concerns relate to the treatment of communications
collected when it turns out that a targeted foreigner is in contact with somebody inside the united states. of course these are also situations where the program can be highly valuable. by letting our government know if a foreign terrorist plot might reach our shores. so this committee's oversight of this law should continue to be robust and although the fisa for amendment act does not require congress to reauthorize it until the end of 2017, i like to begin the conversation about it well in advance. that is why i requested that the committee receive a classified briefing from the obama administration on section seven oh two back in march of this year. it is why why i am so glad to have such a distinguished panel here with us today to talk about those issues.
it is why i am sure it will continue this public dialogue with the administration and others in the future. as i mentioned, section seven oh two allows for the targeting of foreigners located overseas for surveillance. the statute specifically prohibits the targeting of anyone within the united states or any u.s. person, where that person is located around the world. it is also prohibits what is called reverse targeting. that is targeting someone outside of the country for the purpose of targeting a specific person who's located inside. under the statute, the fisa court much of must approve the targeting and minimization procedures to ensure that only appropriate individuals are subject to surveillance. and that limit the handling and
use of any communication so collected. implementation of the statute is overseen by all three branches of government including the appropriate inspectors general. it is true that human error has lead to mistakes in implementing the law over the years. but it also is significant that no internal or external review of section 702 program has ever found any instance of an intentional violation of the law. moreover, section 702 has been highly important for national security. the privacy. the privacy and civil liberties oversight board found unequivocally that it can't quote has helped the united states learn more about the membership, leadership structure, priorities, tactics, and plans of internal terror organizations, it has enabled the discovery of previous unknown terrorist operatives as well as locations and movements
of suspects already known to the government. it has led to the discovery of previously unknown terrorist plots directed against the united states and foreign countries. enabling the disruption of those plots. the board came to these conclusions about the value of section 702 programs after conducting a lengthening, in-depth review of it. just as importantly however, the as importantly however, the board found that the program was constitutional and authorized by statute. in addition, the board proposed a number of recommendations to help improve the privacy and civil liberties protection of seven oh two. according to the board's most recent assessment report, just in this february, all of its recommendations have been implemented in full, or in part
for the relevant government agencies have taken significant steps towards adoption. that is encouraging news, among, among other things i look forward to hearing about the status of these recommendations today as we discuss reauthorizing this important national security authority. now what i think we'll do is start with the first witness, mr. weinstein and then senator when senator leahy comes, we will stop and let him give his opening statement. would you proceed please sir. thank you chairman grassley. members of the committee, it is an honor to be with you today to support the reauthorization of the fisa memo asked and discuss issues it raises with my distinguished palace.
since the attack of september 11 2001, we have been engaged in a methodical effort to enhance her intelligent capabilities, in particular to build a legal and operational framework that affords us the ability to intercept our adversaries communications. the centerpiece of that has been congress's decision to modernize our national security surveillance effort by passing the fisa amendments effort by passing the fisa amendments act, the faa in 2008 and reauthorizing it in 2012. it's important at the outset to remind yourself why it was necessary to modernize the surveillance act in the first place. as you know, the the fisa was passed in 1978 after the committee hearings and the abuses they disclose persuaded congress that it should be subject to judicial review. congress passed fisa and to find those of surveillance, they required approval from that court, in finding which surveillance fell in the category, congress differentiated by the technology of the communication, in a way that effectuated its intent to have court approval for domesticated where the fourth amendment apply but those communications that were foreign-based or the fourth amendment does not apply.
however, with the change of communications technology in intervening years that carveout started to break down. with result of the government found itself into expense significant manpower generating individual fisa court applications for surveillance as against persons were outside the united states. the very category of surveillance that congress specifically intended to exclude what i'm opposed to the fisa court approval requirement 1978. that situation become unattainable with the after 9/11. to its enduring credit, congress stepped up in the spring of 2007, undertook a thorough analysis and debate about how best to revise pfizer and ultimately pass the fisa amendment act in july 2008 and its reauthorization in 2011. about occasions both parties crafted a law that was a step forward for both national security and civil liberties. the statue amended fisa in three part ways.
first, and was significantly, it authorized the fisa court to approve surveillance of categories of terrorist suspects and other foreign intelligence were overseas without requiring the government to provide an individualized application as to each particular target. in section seven oh two, the faa described in a streamlined process by which categories of overseas target can be approved by target surveillance pursuant to strict requirements and subject to review and approval by the fisa court and a substantial oversight regime by entities to include the attorney general, the director of national intelligence, the heads of the inspector general's, the fisa court and intelligence and judiciary committees of congress. in addition to providing this authority in prescribing oversight, faa awful also the protections of american persons by imposing for the very first time, the requirement requirement that the government obtain individualized order from the fisa court one of the for it
undertakes surveillance of a u.s. person. in some ways it was a very well calibrated piece of legislation. he provided the government with the authority it needed but did so in a careful eye on the importance of oversight and on the privacy rights of u.s. persons. since its implementation, faa authorized authorized surveillance has been critical in detecting an understanding that threats we face. that is the case when eyes reviewing faa reporting is homeland security advisory 2008. it is still the case today, as you the case today, as you know from your briefing the other day. partly, besides being implement it effectively it has been implemented responsibly by evidence of the findings that have been no known incidents of intentional misuse of that authority. in supporting reauthorization i ask you to support the vital importance of the faa surveillance to our counterterrorism efforts. to the extreme care in which
congress about parties crafted and delivered the authority when they pass they paid 2008 and reauthorized a four years later. and the findings that this authority have been implemented in great effect with the compliance of the law and the constitution. in addition to these considerations we want to focus on another important consideration which is the severity of the terrorist threat we face today. given that threat is evidenced by the recent attacks, now was not the time that we can our defenses or scale back on critical intelligence security like the fisa act, to the contrary now we need to make sure that we have the authority they need to protect our country and time to reauthorize the statue that is done so much to protect our people in our liberties for the last eight years. thank for the opportunity to speak about this issue and i look for to your question. >> thank you. before mr. olson goes head, i would ask senator leahy to give his opening remarks at this point. >> thank you mr. chairman. as i mentioned earlier, we have conflicting schedules this morning. this is a very important hearing
and i think a year ago this week the house of representatives overwhelmingly passed usa freedom act, several weeks later the senate followed suit. that marked the first major overhaul that government surveillance authority in decades. now today, we are examining the fisa act referred to as section 702, this expires, this expires at the end of 2017. i'm glad we are getting an early start on this. i hope we can avoid the need this expiration of authorities that we have seen last year in the leadership would not bring up the usa freedom act until after the exploring expiration. i am also glad and i pledge you on this mr. chairman that we are holding this hearing in the open. so the the american people can be part of this conversation.
this type of discussion was not possible last time, almost almost every thing about its implementation remain classified. since then the obama administration has did not classify much about it, so the transparent see freedom act is it prompting our efforts, we have a lot of work to do. we're still missing a lot of facts about section 702 implementation additional implementation additional reforms that needs to protect america's privacy, we also have to restore global trust in the u.s. technology industry. not a minor thing. section 702 is an is an important tool for national security agencies. it's also extremely broad. section 702 is aimed at surveillance of foreigners outside the united states. it sweeps up a sizable amount of information about citizens in
american art medicated with foreigners. so the authority to require strong oversight and transparency and protect the american people did in 2008 and in 2012 i oppose the fisa amendment act because it lacked safeguards. despite these concerns are americans communications are being swept up we still do not know how much is collected under this authority. i understand intelligence community is now developing methodologies to estimate that figure and it's long overdue, i applaud that it is happening. it is all the more significant because both intelligence and law-enforcement agencies search this data for information about americans, without judicial approval the backdoor searches i think ray some serious constitutional questions. i asked consent to enter the
record with testimony from several organizations that raise the initial concern including. >> without objection they will be included. >> i just want to conclude this. i know we're going to hear about the importance of this authority to our national security. i understand that. it's a conversation we should have. we also must assure that surveillance operated under section seven oh two respect the other part of american our liberties and our constitutional values. because, unless they align with that is a false sense of security. i look forward to hear from our witnesses. >> mr. olson would you continue. >> thank you chairman grassley.
i'm honored to be here this morning to talk about this important issue. as former director of the counterterrorism center i can attest attest to the value that faa has provided to our national security it significantly has contributed to our ability to prevent terrorist attacks inside the united states and are round the world. as a former general counsel of national security agency and official i was responsible and those jobs of insuring the law was implemented in a way that complied with the law, the constitution and protected the private citizens. in my brief remarks i will focus on the section 702 and the value it has provided. i provided. i think to start, to appreciate the importance to describe briefly that the threat the united states faces from terrorism. the range of terrorist threats we face from al qaeda link groups has expanded and become more diverse. by any measure that prevents the
most urgent threat to our security today. it's governing territory and a the same time secured the allegiance of terrorist groups across north africa and the middle east. it sanctuary in syria and iraq have provided the ability to recruit, train and execute external attacks as we have seen now in paris and brussels. it brussels. it also has the ability to incite others surveillance around the world as we have seen a san bernadino. looking more broadly isis is not the only threat we face in syria, veteran and al qaeda fighters have taken advantage of the impairment there. they're seeking to carry out attacks against the west. al shabab has a safe haven in small you, threatens you, threatens our interest in the region, boko haram, now and i'll i have isis continue to maintain their basis in northwest africa. al qaeda continues to support attacking the west. once to be the leader of a jihad.
their substantial influence over affiliate groups in particular al qaeda and the arabian peninsula commented on three occasions over the past years they have sought to bring down an airliner headed toward the united states. there is ever reason today to believe that they have the intent to carry out such an attack. against this backdrop of a dynamic and legal terrorist threat, the ability of the united states to conduct surveillance under section 702 is vital to our security. as director of an cti relied on daily intelligence briefings from information collected by 702. this information collected by seven oh two. this intelligence was instrumental to our efforts for our -- contributed strategic judgment. two specific cases now declassify highlights, in september 2009 it was used to target e-mail address to that was used by an al qaeda group in pakistan. they discovered a
message sent to a in individual individual in united states in colorado. subsequently he was identified and urgently seeking advice on how to make explosives. after investigation it revealed that a group of operatives had plans to detonate explosives in the new york subway. they were arrested before that could occur. in another case, they conducted surveillance of an email address used by a suspected extremist in yemen. this led to the discovery of a connection between that person and an unknown person in kansas city, missouri later identified, they investigated and found he was connected to other al qaeda it within the states who wanted to bomb the new york stock exchange. they were prosecuted and played guilty. in the context of these cases were emphasizing the role of collection under section 702. the government collected the information directly as a consequence of their from their
seven oh two -- so-called incidental collection led to the initial identification of of the two men and enabled the government to use the tools to advance their investigation. beyond the united states section 702 it's been an invaluable tool in supporting counterterrorism efforts of our allies around the world. finally in describing the values of section 702 it's important important to describe why it's important. as deputy assistant general from 2006 to 2009 oversee doj for night intelligence i experienced firsthand the consequences of the pre-faa approach, in some cases it was not possible under that prior approach to demonstrate probable cause of a foreign target overseas was an agent of a foreign power. in short, section 702 authorizes the government consistent with
the constitution to obtain critical intelligence about terrorist and other targets that it simply cannot obtain by other means. in conclusion, i say that the authority congress established under section 702 has played an indispensable role in protecting the nation from terrorist threats. i look for two questions. >> thank you. chairman grassley, ranking member leahy and members of the committee thank you for the opportunity to testify on behalf of. our nation faces real threats of from international terrorism. your challenge in your responsibility is to ensure that these threats are addressed. not only effectively but in a way that is consistent with the constitution, the privacy interests of law-abiding individuals and our nation's economic nations economic interest. section seven oh two, and its current form does not accomplish
those. technological advances have revolutionized communication. people are communicating on a scale those on a manageable just a few years ago. international phone calls, which were once difficult and expensive as i remember are now a simple as tapping the screen. the internet offers offers countless additional means of international communication. globalization makes these exchanges as necessary as they are easy. as a result, the amount of our information about americans that the nsa intercepts, even when targeting foreigners overseas has exploded. but instead of shoring up safeguards for ordinary americans and foreigners who communicate internationally, section seven oh two did the opposite. it eliminated the requirement of an individual court order to collect communications between foreign targets and americans. that also eliminated the requirement that the target be affiliated with a foreign power or terrorist group. the government today can target any foreigner overseas
regardless of whether he poses any threat to the united states and obtained his communications with americans. will the government must certify that acquired foreign intelligence is one of its purposes, the law defines foreign intelligence broadly enough to include conversations about current events. moreover, the government has introverted the law to allow collection of communications, not just to and from the target, but about the target. this legal this legal change underlies the nsa's upstream collection program whereby a huge proportion of communication is flowing into and out of the united states are scanned for selectors associated with designated foreigners and picked up. they're used up screen, then essay collects more than 250 million internet communications per