facebook tracker

Former CIA, FBI Cheif to Engage ACLU President in Debate on National Security Vs. Personal

Friday, February 22, 2002 - 16:00
Santa Barbara, CA

The attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon were planned and conducted by terrorists living within American society.

To prevent similar attacks, it would seem the government must get better at identifying and tracking potential terrorists.

But how can that be done without seriously compromising individual freedoms?

Former CIA director William Webster and ACLU president Nadine Strossen will argue the issues underlying that question at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 3 in a debate titled "National Security vs. Personal Liberty." The debate will be held in UC Santa Barbara's Campbell Hall.

The event is called "A Great Debate in Contemporary Civilization" and is part of The Arthur N. Rupe Distinguished Dialogue Series organized by the Interdisciplinary Humanities Center.

Tickets cost $5 and are available through UCSB Arts and Lectures (893-3535).

The two speakers are eminently qualified to argue their positions.

Webster has served as director of the Central Intelligence Agency (1987-1991) and as director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (1978-1987). Trained as a lawyer, he has been in private practice and served as a U.S.

attorney and a federal judge.

Among his awards and honors are the Freedoms Foundation National Service Medal, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, and the National Security Medal.

Strossen, also an attorney, has been president of the American Civil Liberties Union since 1991 and is that organization's first woman president.

Since the ACLU position is unpaid, she also serves as a professor of law at the New York Law School.

Her legal specialties are constitutional law, civil liberties, and international human rights.

Her writings -- more than 225 published works -- have been published in many scholarly and general interest publications.

Included on numerous lists of the nation's most influential women, Strossen is in demand by the news media and has appeared on nearly every national television news program.

She graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School, where she was an editor of the Harvard Law Review.

The Arthur N. Rupe Distinguished Dialogue Series seeks to provide a forum for intellectual and stimulating discussions of critical societal issues.

The series is administered through the Office of the Provost in the College of Letters and Science.

"On the heels of the September 11 tragedies, what could be more timely than an open and frank dialogue about the inherent conflict between a free society's responsibility to maintain both the safety and liberty of its people," said Acting Provost Aaron Ettenberg.

"The upcoming dialogue on national security vs. personal liberty is intended to provide UCSB and the Santa Barbara community with a unique opportunity to hear both sides of this important issue."