US National Security, Intelligence and Democracy From the Church Committee to the War on Terror
This volume examines the investigation by the 1975 Senate Select Committee (‘Church Committee’) into US intelligence abuses during the Cold War, and considers its lessons for the current ‘war on terror’.
This report remains the most thorough public record of America’s intelligence services, and many of the legal boundaries operating on US intelligence agencies today are the direct result of reforms proposed by the Church Committee, including the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. The Church Committee also drew attention to the importance of constitutional government as a Congressional body overseeing the activities of the Executive branch. Placing the legacy of the Church Committee in the context of the contemporary debate over US national security and democratic governance, the book brings together contributions from distinguished policy leaders and scholars of law, intelligence and political science.
'Professor Miller provides a timely forum for reflection on the invaluable contributions of the Chruch Committee to oversight of U.S. intelligence activities. Since 9/11, our country has been embroiled in a debate about the proper role of intelligence , the preservation of civil liberties, the consequences of torture and, in many ways, the contours of American values themselves. As we engage in the current debate, we would be well-served by the historical perspectives offered by this remarkable collection of essays.'
Rep. John F. Tierney (D-MA)
'If there is any hope of avoiding intelligence abuse in the post-9/11 era, it will only be by learning the lessons of history, and no investigation, commission, or study is more important on this subject than the Church Committee's 1975 inquiry into domestic spying. This smart and necessary collection brings together a remarkable set of scholars in the hope that we can indeed learn from our mistakes.'
Professor David D. Cole, Georgetown University
'Today’s warrantless surveillance springs from a different and far more calamitous set of circumstances than the warrantless surveillance at the center of the Church Committee investigations of the 1970s. Still, the parallels are stark. In its first half, this timely volume collects insightful lessons for today’s version of the tensions between national security and democracy from some who played central roles inside the Church Committee's work . The contributions in the second half of the book deal thoughtfully with today’s national security controversies. Overall, the collection is carefully structured and the contributors include experienced and knowledgeable scholars and practitioners from law, intelligence, and political science.'
Professor William C. Banks, Syracuse University
"Miller succeeds admirably in compiling a broad array of commentators with unique insights into the Church Committee’s processes and conclusions."
Charles Cary, Georgetown University Law Center