Please forgive the angry tone, but I’m just so sick and tired of this — so fed up with flag wavers who drag what’s really sacred about this country through the mud. It was, after all, people a hell of a lot smarter than George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld who wrote the original Constitution of the United States and the Bill of Rights.
And these very smart people lived in times that were far more dangerous than the ones we live in today; theirs was a world in which the very survival of the nation remained an open question. Yet, they demanded no less than that America live up to its greatness, instead of down to its fears.
Growing out of that tradition, what is it that makes the leaders we have today so frightened of the very principles they pretend to fight for?
Would it really be such an awful thing, for example, to provide meaningful due process to that handful of wicked men (and many clearly not so wicked) we’re holding in Cuba and elsewhere around the world — to live according to our own principles, instead of theirs? According to Bush, the answer apparently is yes, being true to ourselves would be an awful thing.
WASHINGTON — Bush administration lawyers today rejected congressional suggestions to try alleged Al Qaeda and Taliban war criminals in the U.S. military justice system, saying military courts provide protections for defendants that are unwarranted in the war on terrorism.
In their most detailed description of administration policy since the Supreme Court struck down the Pentagon’s special war crimes tribunals last month, the lawyers said their ability to introduce evidence gathered through coercion or through sensitive intelligence sources would be compromised if they were forced to use the Uniform Code of Military Justice to charge Al Qaeda defendants.
So there’s our answer: We can’t have real trials with honest-to-God due process because, God forbid, we might then not be able to do things like use “evidence gathered through coercion,” or in other words, torture. That’s how low they’ve taken us — we deny the truth of our own heritage just so that there won’t be any question that we can convict men, and in some cases even send them to their deaths, based upon information obtained through torture.
That isn’t even close to what America is supposed to be.