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From the beginning of our nation claims of national security have been advanced as grounds for expanding governmental powers or easing restrictions on those powers. Perhaps at no time, other than during active war, have such claims been urged more insistently or on a broader front than they are now. The reasons for this development lie deep in our present political, economic, and social condition. They include the ever-growing complexities faced in the governance of a modem technological nation, the radical nature of the problems that confront us at home, the changes taking place in the world around us, the position of the United States in global affairs, the specter of nuclear warfare, the vulnerability of modern society to terrorist tactics, and many others. Whatever the causes may be, the tension between national security and traditional liberties plainly poses vital questions for our constitutional structure.

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