Obama’s Rule Of Law

17 11 2009

The Rule Of Law

By Dan Scott

The Obama Administration via Attorney General Holder has announced that they will try Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (KSM) in the US, specifically New York. The location of the trial is rationalized as the so-called location of where the crime was committed. As with many things liberals foist upon the public it seems to make some shallow sense until we start digging beneath the surface. Why would President Obama and liberals in general insist on the location of the trial being in the jurisdiction of the crime? In general principle of US Law, the trial of any defendant should occur as a matter of practicality where the crime was committed in order to ensure witnesses are available to testify to the details of the crime. Sounds good so far, except 911 was not a criminal offense, but an act of War, specifically a war crime.

Terrorism it so happens, falls in a gray area of being between a criminal act and an act of War. When Timothy McVeigh bombed the Oklahoma City Federal Building, his act of terrorism was a criminal act. Why? Timothy McVeigh was not allied or working at the behest of any foreign or transnational group such as al Qaeda. Timothy McVeigh was NOT an agent of a foreign power, whether that be a country or a group like al Qaeda. Timothy McVeigh was DOMESTIC TERRORIST; his crimes were of civil insurrection not war. KSM by his own admission was an agent of al Qaeda, a foreign entity who publicly declared war upon the US. The US Congress in granting President Bush powers to prosecute action against al Qaeda, formally DECLARED WAR against it. A state of war exists between al Qaeda, it’s allies (including self directed individuals) and the US government. Therefore any prisoners taken by the US in the prosecution of that war is by definition a prisoner of war. Since the legalities of uniformed combat as recognized by the Geneva Convention didn’t fully deal with non-uniformed or irregulars, they were called enemy combatants. KSM falls in this category but the US has for it’s stated purposed treated him as a prisoner of war.

When the Geneva Convention was negotiated and signed off by the US, it was the understanding that no soldier would be tried as a criminal unless that person did heinous acts outside the agreed upon rules of war. Another point of the Geneva Convention is that at the cessation of hostilities, the prisoners are let go because everyone in service to their country following the orders of their commanders cease fighting, otherwise fighting would go on indefinitely unless the victor decided to slaughter all the prisoners. The NAZI’s were prosecuted at Nuremburg under military tribunals because their “war crimes” were against humanity as in the murder of civilians whose deaths served no military objective or were avoidable given the existing state of technology. When our bomber pilots bombed the German factories of military value and took out residential neighborhoods as unintended collateral damage, they were not tried as war criminals since the state of technology did not allow them to avoid the mass killing of civilians. There were no smart bombs at the time. These are important point distinctions that will become frighteningly clear later.

Given the available technology, KSM in making war upon the US could have targeted US military bases, bridges, oil refineries, power grids, etc. Instead KSM chose to deliberately target civilians who have absolutely no military value. In fact, he deliberately chose a time of day to maximize the civilian death toll. His act was the very definition of a war crime. All war crimes, that is violations of the rules of war are uniquely the province of military tribunals, since it was under a military operation. The gathering of forensic evidence is not a central issue at a military tribunal since it is impractical to gather such evidence from the battlefield. Whereas, in a civilian criminal trial, forensic evidence is indeed the central issue to prove guilt. The central issue is did KSM as a commander in al Qaeda (a paramilitary organization) intentionally plan an attack on civilian noncombatants? KSM and al Qaeda are not the mafia or some underworld gang of cutthroats out make illicit profits killing and maiming people as a consequence of their activities. Al Qaeda is at war with the US.

If KSM can be tried in a civilian court even though he is an agent of foreign power in a time of war, then what this says is any soldier of a foreign power is subject to the civilian courts if he follows his orders. That means the Geneva Convention for all intents and purposes is null and void because one of the central premises was to stop civilian criminal prosecutions of soldiers for following orders. The US will have unilaterally abrogated the treaty thus exposing all US soldiers to civilian trial in any country where they are sent following orders of their commanders. However, there is even a more frightening outcome.

If KSM were subjected to the rules of a civilian court, under current US law, KSM would get off on a series of technicalities. Under US law, a criminal defendant is entitled to a lawyer BEFORE questioning, never mind the water boarding issue. No court, not even a military tribunal will convict someone due to information gathered from aggressive interrogation. Since KSM did not receive a lawyer until well after questioning, in virtually any court in this country a judge would be REQUIRED to throw out the State’s case for this Constitutional violation. IF the civilian Rule of Law were to be followed, KSM would have to be found innocent based on the violations of his Constitutional civil rights in an American civilian court. Obama being a lawyer knows that, even an incompetent lawyer knows that. There is no getting around KSM not having a lawyer, because he DID request one at the outset. Its only after the military told him there is no provision of lawyers for enemy combatants, that he began to talk. How many Americans would stand for KSM getting off on such a technicality? There would be riots in the streets, and Obama would be forcibly removed from office in a civilian uprising. Americans will put up with a lot of nonsense from their political leaders, but this would be the final straw.

What has Attorney General Holder promised the American people to forestall an acquittal by technicality? He claims they have looked at the case from every angle to assure us that there is no way for KSM to walk away innocent of planning 911. In other words, he has said the government is going to rig the rules of the court in order not to acquit KSM. Attorney General Holder, the top law enforcement officer of the country is offering Americans a Faustian Bargain. That means the current civilian legal system IS NOT going to be observed in the trial of KSM. As stated before, because KSM was denied a lawyer when requested, no civilian court would allow him to go to trial under the current rules. Wasn’t the point of trying KSM in a civilian court to try him according to criminal rules? So what we are to be handed is a SHOW TRIAL. A Show Trial is where the verdict is a foregone conclusion, the trial being a formality to satisfy only cursorily veneer of legality. A Show Trial is completely contrary to the Rule of Law. While throwing KSM to the hounds would be emotionally satisfying, creating a NEW legal system of procedure strictly for people deemed terrorists is not what we should allow under any circumstances and here’s why.

If the distinction between a domestic and foreign terrorist is dissolved to try KSM in a civilian court, no US soldier or citizen for that matter will be safe from a show trial. In order to try a terrorist in a civilian court, a new legal system of rules must be implemented. These rules of necessity will give lesser (abridged Constitutional) rights to the accused in order to forestall any technical violations by the government. Under such a system, the government can go on fishing expeditions at will and then ask for forgiveness later saying my bad, but that’s of no consequence in any event since technicalities don’t count. Furthermore, the definition of being a terrorist is subject to interpretation. What is terrorism and therefore who is a terrorist? Will it strictly be based on physical acts of mass casualty or damage and will it also include political motives? A crime must have a motive and the government must prove what that motive is in order to separate terrorism from say a serial killer. How can terrorism be defined without a political motive if it isn’t a military matter? How about when someone dissents against the government line saying those who speak for the government are misleading the public? Couldn’t that be construed as a politically motivated conspiracy to undermine the government, i.e. sedition? How many times have liberals called people terrorists for dissenting against their political views? Didn’t Janet Napolitano, the Secretary of DHS, commission a report saying those who objected to the current government stances on AGW, Second Amendment and government spending as potential terrorists? So, will we be arrested and tried for our political views? Can political prisoners be far off?

Always be careful when a liberal makes populist sounding statements and gives assurances because it is usually misdirection. The real issue here is the undermining of the Rule of Law to abridge our Constitutional rights. A show trial does not further the cause of justice and it certainly isn’t concerned with protecting the innocent. History is replete with show trials by those in power to intimidate the population when it comes to political dissent. Given the Democrats pushing Orwellian euphemisms like Net Neutrality, transparency and investments, the last thing they mean is what they say. Any conviction of KSM under the proposed civilian court is a nail in the coffin of our civil liberties. KSM may be guilty of mass murder, however, the manner in which we allow him to be held accountable will determine whether the rest of us will sit in a prison cell next to him. So, shall we accept the Faustian Bargain to convict KSM via Obama’s Show Trial, or should we be demonstrating in the streets demanding the Rule of Law be carried out via a military tribunal?

***************

Dan Scott calls himself a “Member of the Global Capitalist

Cabal preaching Capitalism and personal responsibility as the economic

solution to world poverty.” He is also a member of the 14th Amendment

Society — victimhood is a liberal code word for denying the civil

rights of others. He is also a proud member of the Global Warming

Denier Cabal, insisting that facts not agendas determine the truth.

Dan can be reached for comments at dscott8186@yahoo.com.

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