Time to Fire Eric Holder

Susan Stamper Brown, FloydReports.com

During a recent speech at the American Constitution Society (ACS), United States Attorney General Eric Holder lauded our American civilian court system as “our most effective terror-fighting weapon.” Holder’s address, along with his whole attorney general career, reflects a flawed ideology that believes wrapping enemy combatants in the American flag will somehow steer them towards full disclosure.

We are fooling ourselves to believe our enemies aren’t smart enough to use habeas corpus against us — which the Constitution does not extend to non-citizens held outside U.S. boundaries. While the good cop routine might work on some of the more impressionable, the determined fanatics will take advantage of the situation. Sometimes you need a “Jack Bauer” to intervene to make these people sweat.

Holder’s implied moral high ground originates from the assumption that captured enemy combatants will be mistreated – unless they are blanketed by the security of our Constitution. Holder fails to recognize that our military is bound by the same Constitution, as well as the Geneva Convention.

The last time I checked, those who strayed away from their obligations to constitutional rule of law were duly convicted of crimes. Their actions, along with those of Attorney General Holder, do nothing but undermine the efforts of so many charged with keeping the rest of us safe from the criminals they imprison.

A lack of confidence in the military tribunal system seems to pervade the Justice Department under Holder as service members assigned to Guantanamo Bay do their duty honorably and faithfully, every day.

Case in point is the recent indictment of….

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Cartoon of the Day: 14 Cartoons on Osama’s Death

Flush with the news that Osama bin Laden had been killed, the world’s cartoonists immortalized the day in a number of often similar ways. Based on Osama’s burial at sea, many chose a nautical theme:

Other depictions focused not on the water of his earthly resting place but on fire of his eternal abode:

Some cartoonists saw this as a long-awaited response to 9/11:

It seems, from this author’s perspective, the cartoon with the most promise for America’s future is this one:

Obama Discovers New “Rights” for Terrorists

Susan Stamper Brown, FloydReports.com

Americans may be less safe today because the Obama administration made the decision to circumvent the Constitutional treaty ratification process by mandating that his administration would begin compliance with Article 75 of Additional Protocol I (API) to the 1949 Geneva Conventions “out of a sense of moral obligation.”

API, an unsanctioned addition to the Geneva Convention that was unequivocally rejected by previous administrations, outlines fundamental rights or guarantees for captives taken in an international armed conflict. This addition sounds nice in Dreamland, where it’s okay to interchange the words “international” and “national” without consequence. But, where the rest of us live, the word “international” is quintessential. The Supreme Court determined (Hamdan vs. Rumsfeld) that America is involved in a non-international armed conflict with al-Qaeda and the Taliban, making Article 75 moot.

We were led to believe we were having an intelligent Guantanamo Bay (Gitmo) detainee discussion when the administration threw in some non sequitur about Article 75. Introducing Article 75 into the conversation was misleading to those who take words at face-value, confusing to those who dare to delve below the surface and alarming to those who understand our safety is in the hands of some who dangerously dance outside the confines of common sense.

In a March 7, 2011, White House fact sheet titled “New Actions on Guantanamo and Detainee Policy,” the administration suggests, “Our adherence to these principles is also an important safeguard against the mistreatment of captured U.S. military personnel.” Let me get this right. America is involved in a non-international armed conflict with an indefinable enemy that use woman and children as “human shields,” blow themselves up on a regular basis, behead their enemy using dull swords – and we should believe our military will be safer? Secretary of State Clinton said it’s “not about who our enemies are, but about who we are.” We are a lot of things, but Americans aren’t stupid….

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Oppose the Fed? You’re a “Terrorist”

Ben Smith, Politico

Here’s a novel of an expansion of the federal government’s use of the word “terrorism,” from the triumphant statement of a North Carolina U.S. Attorney, Anne Tompkins, who just won a conviction against a man who minted his own currency:

Attempts to undermine the legitimate currency of this country are simply a unique form of domestic terrorism,” U.S. Attorney Tompkins said in announcing the verdict.

“While these forms of anti-government activities do not involve violence, they are every bit as insidious and represent a clear and present danger to the economic stability of this country,” she added.

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Obama May Use Executive Powers to Bring Gitmo Detainees to U.S.

Ben Johnson, FloydReports.com

“The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands…may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny” — James Madison, The Federalist Papers, #47.

The New York Times has a pair of chilling stories indicating Barack Obama is considering ignoring provisions of a new law that forbid him from transferring Guantanamo Bay terrorist detainees to the United States or to countries that may not be equipped to prevent their escape. “Several” anonymous White House officials revealed the president may issue a signing statement ignoring these provisions of the law, treating them as though they did not exist. Times reporter Charlie Savage indicated this would represent “a more aggressive use of unilateral executive powers than what he exerted in his first two years in office.”

The West Wing debate appears to be another example of the president’s determination to rule by executive fiat in 2011.

Congress used the power of the purse to prevent civilian trials for terrorists in U.S. courts. The language, attached to the defense authorization bill, forbids the Defense Department from spending any money to transfer detainees or to enhance U.S. sites to house Gitmo transferees. Another provision requires foreign countries to meet high standards of security before releasing detainees within their borders.

Since the bill authorizes funding for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the president will not veto it. However, the Times indicates he may ignore these provisions, bypass Congress, and bring accused terrorists to U.S. soil before trying them in civilian courts.

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