Nation's Soul Is at Stake
"The plaintiffs in the Al-Haramain case include a charity that claims the government illegally wiretapped calls between itself and its lawyers. During the litigation, the government turned over a document that proved, the plaintiffs say, that the charity was indeed surveilled without a warrant. The government claimed the document was classified top secret and asked the plaintiffs to return it. However, the lawyers still remember what the document said. Now the government wants to prevent the lawyers from using their own memories to prove that the charity was indeed monitored and therefore has the right to sue.

The trial court in Oregon ruled in favor of the plaintiff (.pdf), leading the government to appeal. On appeal, Al-Haramain's attorney Jon B. Eisenberg was required to write his appellate brief at government offices and was not permitted to retain a copy of his own document, nor will he be allowed to see the government's reply to his arguments."

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