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Thread: Obama Administration Declares Proposed IP Treaty a 'National Security' Secret

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    Obama Administration Declares Proposed IP Treaty a 'National Security' Secret

    Obama Administration Declares Proposed IP Treaty a 'National Security' Secret
    By David Kravets March 12, 2009 | 11:21:09 PMCategories: Sunshine and Secrecy

    President Barack Obama came into office in January promising a new era of openness.

    But now, like Bush before him, Obama is playing the national security card to hide details of the controversial Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement being negotiated across the globe.

    The White House this week declared (.pdf) the text of the proposed treaty a "properly classified" national security secret, in rejecting a Freedom of Information Act request by Knowledge Ecology International.

    "Please be advised the documents you seek are being withheld in full," wrote Carmen Suro-Bredie, chief FOIA officer in the White House's Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.

    The national security claim is stunning, given that the treaty negotiations have included the 27 member states of the European Union, Japan, South Korea, Canada, Mexico, Australia, Switzerland and New Zealand, all of whom presumably have access to the "classified" information.

    In early January, the Bush administration made the same claim in rejecting (.pdf) a similar FOIA request by the Electronic Frontier Foundation.

    If ratified, leaked documents posted on WikiLeaks and other comments suggest the proposed trade accord would criminalize peer-to-peer file sharing, subject iPods to border searches and allow internet service providers to monitor their customers' communications.

    In his first days in office, Obama publicly committed himself to transparency, instructing government agencies to err on the side of public access and divulge information whenever possible under the Freedom of Information Act. Obama recently released a trove of documents relating to the Bush administration's rationale for torture of enemy combatants and other abuses.

    At the same time, though, Justice Department lawyers have been arguing in court that the "state secrets privilege" should bar lawsuits over the NSA's warrantless wiretapping program.

    Source: Wired.com

    Knowledge Ecology International - Home
    Proposed US ACTA multi-lateral intellectual property trade agreement (2007) - Wikileaks

    Obama Promises New Era of Openness -- Update | Threat Level from Wired.com
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Obama Administration Declares Proposed IP Treaty a 'National Security' Secret-bushama-jpg   Obama Administration Declares Proposed IP Treaty a 'National Security' Secret-ustr_foia_denial-pdf   Obama Administration Declares Proposed IP Treaty a 'National Security' Secret-asset_upload_file122_13414-pdf   Obama Administration Declares Proposed IP Treaty a 'National Security' Secret-foia-ustr-acta-response2-doc1_0-pdf  
    “How is freedom measured, in individuals as in nations? By the resistance which has to be overcome, by the effort it costs to stay aloft. One would have to seek the highest type of free man where the greatest resistance is constantly being overcome: five steps from tyranny, near the threshold of the danger of servitude.”

    Friedrich Nietzsche

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