[EDITORIALS]Keep politics out of probeAfter the National Intelligence Service recently announced that it had conducted wiretapping operations during the Kim Dae-jung administration, those who had led the spy agency during that period reportedly protested. According to news reports, the former intelligence chiefs have coordinated their positions and will make them public soon. Former President Kim’s opinion was also reflected, reports said.
In other words, the former intelligence chiefs are planning to say that they had not conducted illegal eavesdropping while they were leading the agency. In that case, we may see an unprecedented confrontation between the former and current officials of the National Intelligence Service. Some are also worrying that the situation may grow into a conflict between the Kim Dae-jung and Roh Moo-hyun administrations.
This is not the way to resolve the matter. The issue is whether the spy agency illegally eavesdropped on people or not, and the former heads of the agency should instead focus their efforts on this issue. If the agency was not involved in these illegal operations under their supervision, then they should appear before prosecutors and make that point clear.
If there were illegal operations, then they should voluntarily reveal the truth and accept the responsibility rather than having the prosecution clarify the past.
The reports that the former intelligence chiefs have met prior to the announcement of their collective position disappoint the nation. It makes us question whether they intend to turn the eavesdropping issues into a political matter.
Immediately after the National Intelligence Service confessed about its wiretapping operations, the former president was suddenly hospitalized, and the ruling circle figures paid visits to him and provided explanations for the Kim administration. These moves made us question their intentions. As a result, the former intelligence chiefs’ joint action may make the public wonder if they are trying to resolve the issue under political pressure.
The prosecution must investigate the case thoroughly, putting their honor at stake to prevent politics from influencing the case. To this end, the prosecution must frequently inform the nation about its investigation. Laying bare the truth and preventing a recurrence of these incidents are the only way to save the National Intelligence Service.