Freeing the CIA

Spooks want to spy at home

During the Viet Nam era, the Central Intelligence Agency collected files on 7,200 American citizens, as it and the FBI tried to link domestic dissenters with foreign plots—an activity that it was not empowered to pursue. After Watergate, and the disclosure of CIA misdeeds, Presidents Ford and Carter issued Executive orders to curb the agency's activities and protect American civil liberties. But Ronald Reagan's election has evidently emboldened the CIA to try to roll back some restrictions. Under consideration is a proposed Executive order that, if signed by the President, would give the CIA extensive domestic...

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