After the Turnabout, the Spin

Just hours after the White House confirmed that the U.S. would again comport with an important Geneva Conventions provision in its war against terrorism, Administration officials came before the Senate Judiciary Committee and began to try to weasel their way out from under the letter and spirit of last month's Supreme Court ruling that prompted the stunning change in policy. Not only that, but federal lawyers told Congress that the White House's about-face on the rights of the detainees isn't really an about-face at all but simply a confirmation of the legal position the Justices announced in June when they declared that the Administration's planned military commissions for the Guantanamo Bay detainees violated domestic law and the Conventions themselves.

"The memo that went out, it doesn't indicate a shift in policy," Daniel Dell'Orto, principal deputy counsel at the Department of Defense, told Committee members. "It just announces the decision of the court." This whopper of a statement came around the same time that Dell'Orto told the Senate, presumably with a straight face, that the current treatment of detainees at Gitmo and elsewhere already complied with Article 3 of the Conventions. That would be odd since it has been the policy of the Administration, since 2002, to consider suspected terrorists to be beyond the reach of the Conventions' provisions. That failed and now obsolete policy is what led us to Abu Ghraib, for example, and many of the other cases of detainee abuse and torture that have inflamed passions all over the world.

The onus now falls upon Congress to see through this spin and reject the Administration's stubborn insistence that it's trial plans for the detainees are legitimate and legal. They are not. The Supreme Court has said so. Unless the other two branches agree upon a series of procedures for the detainees that are designed not just to be "recognized as indispensible by civilized people," as the Conventions require, but also to comport with some sort of constitutional due process, we all will be back here in a few years after another Administration setback at the Supreme Court.

One of the federal lawyers today called the issues "complex." They really aren't. What's stopping this problem from being resolved is the Administration's desire to have its cake and eat it, too; to set up a series of military procedures that will generate or perhaps even guarantee convictions even in those cases where the government's evidence against the men is the weakest. If the White House were to move from this unjust position, we could see a deal in a day and commissions in a month.

This does not mean that the legislators or the President could or should grant the detainees the same rights as you and I would receive- the law does not require that level of due process. But it certainly requires more due process than the current military commissions, rejected by the Justices, would have permitted. There is plenty of middle ground here, between what fair trial rights regular criminal defendants receive and what the White House would give to the detainees. It's time to find that middle ground so, at the very least, we don't have to listen to government attorneys like the ones today who came to Congress to call an apple an orange and to tell the world that the Supreme Court didn't really mean what it said.

By Andrew Cohen |  July 11, 2006; 4:30 PM ET
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Does anyone expect Congress to follow through on this in a meaningful way during an election year?

I mean I'm just asking...

Posted by: Alex Smith | July 11, 2006 05:04 PM

The only thing I expect is for Congress to rubber stamp whatever new set of whims and fanciful deceptions the White House comes up with next, and it will be shot down in court, perhaps more quickly and forcefully than this time around since Bush et al can't pretend that the Geneva Conventions don't apply anymore and not even Congress can unilaterally rewrite them. The Republicans will go on playing to their rabid base as long as they can cling to power, and that means the United States continues to pursue policies that are abhorred by the rest of the world.

Posted by: | July 11, 2006 05:13 PM

So I guess we should re-align our national objectives with the rest of the world then, right?

Good, let's start with YOUR rights! You and Cohen swear your allegiance to Al Qaeda, and see how you like it.

Clinton 'respected' the rights of his enemies more than the rights of his interns, or hiw wife and child, and you mealy-mouthed 'rabid' libs turned a blind eye to it.

Abu Graib was an anomaly, whereas under Saddam's rule such behavior, and far worse, was routine. Yet you hold no such compassion for the rights of Arab women.

Your arguments are pathetic, empty-headed rhetoric that only serve to point out the height of your hypocrisy and your mindset of 'partisanship at ANY costs!"

You make me want to hurl.

Posted by: World abhors freedom, liberty and democracy | July 11, 2006 05:24 PM

Mr. "World abhors freedom, liberty and democracy", where is Mr. Cohen arguging that the prisoners were treated better under Saddam? Where is he saying anything about women? Where is he saying anything that Bush should copy Clinton's policies exactly?

You complain about partisanship, but make an utterly stupid post that fails to make any relevant points. Cohen 'swears his allegiance to Al Qaeda'?? What?! And *you're* complaining about blind partisanship?

Posted by: Kelsey | July 11, 2006 05:32 PM

I think "World abhors freedom, liberty and democracy " pretty much says what people of reasonable intelligence are up against.
I think the fact that Clinton knows how to stand up their facist, lockstep tendencies is what makes them so angry with him. Either that, or he could have sex without paying up front. I haven't quite figured it out yet.

Posted by: Lee Dunkelberg | July 11, 2006 05:33 PM

Classic strawman emotional nonsense. Clinton? He hasn't been president for more than a term, and the best you can come up with to counter outrage for the inhumane treatment of other humans at our hands is that Clinton fooled around with an intern and we should all join Al Qaeda?

Abu Ghraib wasn't "an anomaly" and we hold no compassion for Arab women? What next? The nazis were mean, and we kick puppies?

I hope that comment was a joke because this asylum has been run by that kind of inmate for far too long.

Posted by: Everyone Else | July 11, 2006 05:37 PM

Gimme a break. You Liberals stroke each other all day and night, while the rest of us (the majority) laugh at you.
Clinton was a complete disaster for this country. He did nothing, including anything to do with combatting terrorism, vetoing the North Korea treat of 1997 (with bipartisan support), and virtually anything that would have made him unpopular with the extreme left (like his butt-ugly butch wife).

He set the defense program back 20 years (ask any CIA official to comment on that one), and now you Liberals blame Bush for us having weak intelligence. Such hypocrites.

Then again, didn't he and Al Gore creat the internet? Pathetic.

Posted by: Mad Max in SoCal | July 11, 2006 05:39 PM

Hurl away "World abhors" - it's your own finger in your throat.

Your argument could equally apply to the U.S. court system, which would be oh so much more efficient if we just hung 'em all and let the 'one true God' do the sorting.

There's no sense lowering our great country's standards in the name of authoritarian nationalism disguised as civil protection. The Bush admininistration's policies have much in common with the early German and Italian governments leading up to WWII, as do a signficant segment of our population tolerating (in your case defending) its several first steps down the long slippery slope eroding the very liberties it proports to protect in our names.

Possibly half of America is apparently blinded by a lack of historical education and critical thinking skills to see the obvious, serious problem We the People are creating for ourselves by allowing this administration to continue unaccounted and unchecked.

Posted by: Decorated 8-year Military Veteran | July 11, 2006 05:52 PM

Hey 'World' (in your eyes),

I am always game to talk shop. Sometimes bloggers/posters get great conversations going. Your post, however, is utterly vacant of any points or meaning.

I am fabulously smitten with your oh-so-intelligent 'Let's take away YOUR rights' snide remark. It's clear you don't really believe in any American ideals. We ALL have the same rights. Disagreeing with the president, congress, whomever, does NOT make one an Al-Qaeda affiliate. Your desire to strip dissenters of their rights, however, squarely pegs you as repressive as the Taliban regieme, in that respect, anyway. Don't like what someone is saying? Let's take away their ability to challenge me... sounds very insecure. To prove this, I'm sure you will fire back some more vitirol confirming this shortly.

It sure is easy to label ALL LIBS EVERYWHERE as CLINTON LOVERS and drag them down to the mud with Clinton for whatever he did. Clearly, many many 'liberals' do not endorse each and every action of president Clinton. I can also imagine that not all reps (despite thier mindless, damn-the-truth-till-it-REALLY-hurts outlook on life and the world in general lately) stand behind every single word Bush says. I'm sure you enjoy castrating 'liberals' everywhere for everything done by Clinton or anyone else you see as a threat. I hope you are comforted in your delusions.

Speaking of delusions, to call Abu Graib an anamoly is yet another instance of wishful thinking, to be very nice about your mental capacity. With 'Club Gitmo' (ask Rush L), the rapes and killings of innocent civilians, and so many other decidedly and irrefutably WRONG things happening around the world at the direct order of the Masters of the United States, it is no wonder we have lost all moral high ground. So your moral indignation about the compassion for Arab women is a joke. Besides, I voted ANTI-WAR, that IS my compassion for them (by electing to NOT kill them - get it yet?). And just because there was no inclusion or provision for the compassion of Arab women/children... you can only fit so much into one article/comment.

Pathertic, empty handed rhetoric. (??) WMDS, anyone? (Ooooh - sorry. Reality again. Where I live.)

I hope you don't hurl. Reality is hard to stomach, I know. Sadly, I have to deal with everyone not living there. I feel for you. I, too, feel like hurling a lot. Thankfully, reading usually cures it and gives me hope. Hint.

PS - I propose a UFC match between Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, Limbaugh, Coulter and Cheney, all taking on Chomsky. I am betting on Chomsky... :P

Posted by: The world abhors what? | July 11, 2006 05:54 PM

One right-winger wants to "hurl"; another accuses liberals of engaging in mutual masturbation. What amazes me about the right in this country is their seeming inability to carry on a civilized debate about important issues facing the country. It is sad. The right was once represented by some of the smartest people in public discourse, who generally got their point across in a polite, dignified manner (think Bill Buckley, or the younger George Will). But now on the right all that seems to matter is the size of a commentator's mouth and the vitriol of his or her invective.

Posted by: Flabbergasted | July 11, 2006 06:07 PM

Excellent, Mr. Cohen! Clearly, the Bush crew will weasel around anything they feel would require recognizing the rights of "detainees" who may or may not be involved in terrorist-related-related-related activities. So far, mostly foreign-born detainees. But as the good pasteur said under the Nazis, "When they came for the Jews, I did nothing, because I was not a Jew. . .and when they came for me. . ."
Let us hope today and in this country, the legislator will halt the weasels' walk.

Posted by: Paula Friedman | July 11, 2006 07:00 PM

I think it's pretty clear that the wingnut commentators' real problem is with the Bush administration, not Cohen's piece, specifically their non-reversal reversal. Even the most wild-eyed Bush partisans can see that the administration has changed its approach, which means they're either wrong now or wrong then. This is more cognitive dissonance than most dittoheads can deal with, thus the over-the-top ranting.

Posted by: SekuHara | July 11, 2006 07:27 PM


Posted by: highflyer | July 11, 2006 07:40 PM

The Geneva Conventions were set up and we adhere to them in order to obtain humane treatment for our military personnel when captured.

Since our military personnel are routinely slaughtered, we have not reason to apply the Geneva Conventions to terrorists. We should treat them the same way they treat our personnel, they should be interrogated, with torture and then executed.

Posted by: Retired 28 year military | July 11, 2006 07:47 PM

I must agree with earlier comments made - every response to an objection of this administration from the right tends to be "but Clinton..." which is more of a whine than argument, and certainly doesn't answer objections at any level. How about that one time Bush did coke?

Posted by: Sappy | July 11, 2006 07:52 PM

"What amazes me about the right in this country is their seeming inability to carry on a civilized debate about important issues facing the country"

Hey Flabbergasted, it's only '23%' of the popoulation that's preprogammed to follow their dear leader no matter what.

Posted by: stram | July 11, 2006 07:53 PM

"they should be interrogated, with torture and then executed"

Hey 'retired 28 yr military'... It's a good thing you're retired. We sure don't need anymore idiots like you in Iraq.

Posted by: stram | July 11, 2006 07:58 PM

The saddist aspect of this entire debacle is that the Gitmo prisoners will continue to be treated as less than human. We already know that many were "sold" to the US or turned in for personal or political reasons. How many innocent men or boys are having their lives destroyed at Gitmo?

This DECISION by the Supremes WILL NOT CHANGE A THING. In case we have not noticed, Governor Bush does not pay any attention to the other branches of government. He is the supreme decider. and he's not about to change his spots.

God save our country from our own rulers.

Posted by: Lana | July 11, 2006 08:04 PM

It's always entertaining to read the venomous replies of the hate filled right.

Collectively, they occupy a lower level of consciousness and their arguments are based upon projection. This is the stuff that shadows are made of.

World Abhors Freedom here unconsciously engages in a little shadow he/she throws up a red herring. This is because he/she is UNAWARE of the issues and does not have sufficient intelligence to interpret them.

Posted by: centerleft | July 11, 2006 08:11 PM

Lib bashers are just that...tyrants like their Pres...They fail to understand ...they and their attitudes are creating more dislikes of americans not only in the islamic regions but worldwide..They couldn't care less as with Bush their arrogance overrides intelligence...repubs truly personifies the ugly american. Humans with brains understand the importance of the golden rule....Repubs dont understand the importance of the Geneva convention...2 MORE YEARS OF SCREWUPS AWAIT US...HOPE THAT PEOPLE WITH INTELLIGENCE WILL ONCE AGAIN TAKE THE REINS VOTE DEMOCARATIC AND GIVE US BACK SOME DIGNITY (LET US ELECT A PRESIDENT OF THE PEOPLE , FOR THE PEOPLE AND NOT SPECIAL INTERESTS ..AKA HALLIBURTON AND WALMART)

Posted by: MAWGA DAWG | July 11, 2006 08:11 PM

Take one coward of a president - mix well with a group of draft dodgers - what do you have?

A disgraced United States whose "fine fighting men" appear to be spending their time murdering and raping.

Too bad the republicans only talk morality and refuse to live by it. Bush and Co are a disgrace to this country. I liked it better when my country made hard decisions becasue they were right, not because our leadership is afraid of their own shadows and who seem to find it very easy to cry "the terrorists made me do it" to justify every immoral decision they make.

I'm so sick and tired of being embarassed for my country.

BTW - service in the military is just another license to complain - something like voting - I met too many just plain ignorant people during my time in the military to be impressed because of extended military service.

True patriotism includes the ability to see what is right and wrong with this country - and true patriots speak out against our countries mistakes because speaking out is in the finest tradtion of our country. I am certain Patrick Henry would have a few choice words for those who attempt to stifle debate in the name of patriotism.

Posted by: Maddisen | July 11, 2006 08:17 PM

WE ARE OUR OWN WORST ENEMY..THE NORTH KOREAN FIASCO FOR EXAMPLE...One only has to open their eyes and think...No.Korea got their technology from whom??...Pakistan ...China....and where did Pakistan and China get theirs...the good ol USA of course...$$$$$$Greedy evil minded corporations are controlling not only our politicians...they are killing there a honest politician left in the house????..

Posted by: MAWGA DAWG | July 11, 2006 08:32 PM

When I was in the "Hanoi Hilton", we were certainly not treated according to Geneva.
But, then again, when we were released and arrived home in San Fran, 12 of us were greeted by jeers, spitting if they could reach, and other niceties.
I wonder if Mr Cohen and all you people who support his view were old enough to be in that greeting crowd.

Posted by: Viet Vet | July 11, 2006 09:35 PM

I'm sick of seeing these FAKE "decorated veterans" ranting that we should be torturing and killing our enemies. There is no honor or purpose to that, nor is there any meaningful intelligence to be gleaned that way.

Only a draft dodger (Shrub) could come up with a torture policy like this and keep a straight face: any VET would have realized that Art 3 protects US, not them, and would have recommended charges of conduct unbecoming against anyone even suggesting torture.

Posted by: 8 year non-decorated vet | July 11, 2006 09:38 PM

Blah blah blah...

Why do you libs hate America?!?!

You should all move to Canada if you don't like your Commander in Chief. Your lack of respect for authority disgusts me. Bunch of commie anarchist!!

Posted by: GodBlessAmerica | July 11, 2006 09:47 PM

If there is this much vitriol for the current administration, why don't people try to change it? If you have any proof of torture other than "I heard this guy say that his friend told him a rumor that bad things might be happening," then get Bush impeached. It happened to Clinton for an affair, why not to Bush for war crimes? On the other hand, if you don't have a leg to stand on, admit it. I've heard so many conflicting accounts that I've chosen to believe none of it until I see unequivocal proof.

As such, I can feel free to use thoughts when I vote or talk about politics. I don't have a political party, I have prioritized issues. Therefore, I voted for Bush on the realization that war in Iraq would lead to oil shortages, and increased research into ways to use less oil; on the understanding that a war on terrorism would make us a terrorist target, causing us to beef up our Intelligence and Security; and that a White House aligned against Congress would cause the death of legitimate actions because 'that would help the other guys.'

Posted by: If you don't like it, change it. | July 11, 2006 10:06 PM

Have all of you forgot what war is about? It is the ugly brutal job of eradicating your enemy until they capitulate. We bombed hundreds of cities in past wars killing millions of civilians so until we get the backbone to do this again we will never win this. People have to call it what it really is, another war against Islam. All of you wackos that complain about this war should move to an Islamic country, especially you WOMEN, and live amongst these supposedly wonderful people. If you are not Muslim they feel that your existence is meaningless and will eradicate you given the opportunity.Even if you ARE Muslim they will kill you to force their views upon you and you will live in FEAR. History repeats itself and is doing so again. The Geneva convention is a JOKE, ignore it and wipe out the Terrorists and every Muslim country that supports them until they capitulate. Japan and Germany did, they will too. 62,000,000 people died in WWII because no one had the guts to cut the heads off of the troublemakers until it was too late. I want to see my family live in a safe, happy enviornment and think just like the Muslims do, anyone not Christian should be wiped off the map. Until then, count on many more needless deaths just as there has been for over a thousand years.

Posted by: Ignore it, its WAR! | July 11, 2006 10:07 PM

"Retired 28 year military"

I understand where you are coming from completely, that our enemies have no respect for our armed troops, and I'm not disagreeing with you in terms of principle.

The problem is that not all of the people we have captured are not necessarily terrorists. We are working in a very gray area with detainees, and the last thing we want is an international fiasco on our hands because we tortured the wrong person.

As much as one would like to see our enemies suffer, harming innocents doesn't harm them, it only strengthens their resolve. Terrorists are not limited in supply, they are created out of misinformation supplied to people in a present state of social and political upheaveal.

If we can show that we, even if we have made mistakes, are able to correct them, and do the right thing, then the potential for the terrorists to bolster their numbers from the masses will be signifigantly reduced.

But, as it stands, our prisons have only given them the material for their propaganda.

Now, I can see the next argument coming already from some of you out there: if no one had even mentioned that we had prisons (ie: the media), then the terrorists wouldn't have the opportunity to use that as an excuse. It's easy to take care of, but if we beat up our media for doing its potentially dangerous job, that would make our democracy and concepts of liberty less... flexible. It would constrain us, make the nation's bones brittle with double standards and bad precedents. It's the onset of old age, and I'd rather not have other countries calling us a "once-great nation" years down the road... like vultures, waiting for the unceremonious fall of their prey to the ground.

Maybe that's just the stuff of my nightmares. It's why I don't like China or Russia very much.

In any case, it weakens our concepts of liberty to supress them at any point, as it's hard to get back to that point of having a free press after the conflict has past. I'll leave it at that.

Unfortunately, it would seem that the body politic has been enervated by the 2006 elections and whatnot to do all that much about it. We'll hear more about it afterwards, when the all the politicians' words aren't being tape recorded to use against each other in advertisements.

Posted by: Talcos S. | July 11, 2006 10:09 PM

Mad Max says liberals blame Bush for having weak intelligence. Oh, please. We liberals are more sensitive than that. We're not blaming him for being an idiot. In fact, we're very accepting of who he is...


Posted by: richard in boulder | July 11, 2006 10:21 PM

The fact that this is even an issue demonstrates how well the Bin Ladins of the world (aided by a very incompetent Bush administration) have succeeded where the Hitlers, Stalins,Togos and Abu Nidals could not. Making the USA grovel in the same filth tyrants and despots have wallowed in for centuries.

This change of course by the Bush administration is driven by one cold, hard fact. World wide, we are rapidly losing the battle for "Hearts and Minds". World opinion of the USA, and faith that this Nations will not only live by principal, but lead by principal, is at an all time low. If not gone entirely. And in Iraq and Afghanistan specifically, the people have lost all faith in us. They are now merely choosing which side will offer them the most protection in the vacume we have created. Those that is, that have not joined the Jehad.

The rapid deterioration of the situation in Iraq, Afghanistan and all of Central Asia and the Mid East demonstrates
how effectively Al Quaeda and its siblings have leveraged our blunders against us.

Bush proclaims "We will not allow the terrorists to frighten us"...Yeah, right.

There use to be a day when my fellow conservatives held the Constitution, and the ideals this Nation was founded, on as absolute.
A day when this Nation's word was its bond. A day when the thought of circumventing the conventions and treaties we inspired, helped write and signed was unthinkable. Now, to be a "conservative" means to amend the constitution at a whim, weasel out of the international agreements we have made, and to applaud suspending due process for its own citizens, much less any other nations citizens. Now, to be a "conservative" means to bow, completely uncritically, to the President as if he were a King. If you listen close, you can hear Barry Goldwater rolling in his grave. Now, to be a "conservative" means to think just like Bush. And to be a complete airhead.

Posted by: Goldwater Republican | July 11, 2006 10:33 PM

Liberal, in Bush-speak, means anyone to the left of the his radical right. Do you, Mad Max, think all terrorist come from the liberal left? "GW Bush & Company" is a global disaster that is bastardizing the US constitution, violating the civil rights of hundreds of thousands of innocent individuals around the world and raping the planet for monetary gain. Let's talk terrorism.

Posted by: richard in boulder | July 11, 2006 10:33 PM

Also, to "ignore it, its WAR", the comments I made might also be of interest to you. I tend to ramble a bit though, so bear with me.

Just remember that slaughtering them isn't going to accomplish anything. There will be more terrorists.

And, I have to comment, that it's unfair to comment on the muslims are inhumanane to their women and so forth. You have to understand that they live in a different society than us, and are of a different background.

The arabs inhabiting the mesopotamian region in which we are currently fighting are a race of subterranean mole people with a penchant for religious fervor (much like the morlocks, except they are human and don't feast on the flesh of others, so not like morlocks at all), who spend 4 months out of every year in hibernation. The time in which they are out is fraught with danger, as they will need to outcompete the various natural enemies they face in the desert climate of the Middle East.

This makes them very hostile to outsiders like American troops, whose use of radio frequency communications can interfere with their limited "telepathic" powers (to them radio sounds like the grating of fingernails on a chalkboard, very distracting). It's not really telepathy, more like electical signal sensing similar to sharks. Makes them VERY good poker players, allows them to read their opponents better. Kind of like Haji from Johnny Quest. Did you ever see that show? Just like that.

As for their women, I find it hard to compare the intricate mating rituals involved with their relationships as compared to ours. As exhibited by other super-evolved human races, the arabs mating rituals are based around extremely delicate pheremone communications. In fact, it was the moorish leader Tariq ibn-Ziyad (who brought Spain under moorish rule in the year 711 - a fun year to remember, like the chain of stores called 7-11's), who first was recorded as demonstrating this rapidly developing biological system. It gained prominence as the result of selective breeding up until the Spanish inquisition - which promptly evicted them.

It's hard to explain, but it's why they have such an odd tendency to cover their women. Their signal interpretations can be a bit too sensitive, and often prefer making their women submissive to them rather than actually getting to know them. The (ideally) fine tuned nature of their pheremonal glands has long been taken for granted, making any such transitions into normal living very difficult. Scientists have theorized that atmospheric conditions in their native areas, brought on by urban development, may be to blame for this continuation of a very old tradition.

It's insulting to call them sub-human. If anything, they are far superior to us, and will likely outlast us if World War 3 wipes America off of the map.


Now, I just made up every single thing I said up until now, but I think it makes a very good point. You can't keep arguing from these absurd generalizations that the muslims are evil or that we should kill all of them as good christian people - it sickens me that you could even consider this possibility.

It's wrong to brand people like you are doing. And it is most certainly unchristian.

Posted by: Talcos S. | July 11, 2006 10:43 PM

Just an FYI for you accusing me of being unchristian, I am not a religeous person at all. The real fact that you need to wake up too is that people of all faiths hide behind religeon to "justify" their hideous acts of barbarism against their fellow man and have done so for over a thousand years. I will say that Christianity does not say to kill Muslims in the Bible.

Your responce indicates you watch far too much fiction and apparently live in a world that believes you can deal with these folks. Avoiding aggressive action now will just mean we will be sending more of our most precious resources, our kids, into war in the future. WW III is here already and has spread all over the globe because the superpowers have allowed these religeous parasites and supporters to fester too long. Its not about being innocent, it's about long term survival of our way of life. Quit watching fiction, start studying history, you may see and understand the real world then!

Posted by: Wake up to the real world! | July 11, 2006 11:18 PM

In the county I was born in we are "Innocent until proven Guilty". Somehow the law got changed when Bush became President. Somehow our freedoms were lost in the shuffle of the Patriot Act. Our President is no longer - we have a Commander in Chief and have had since 2001. Their are no more elections, until he steps down and the WAR is over...

Several weeks ago, my house was raided, and my computers taken, but I wasn't arrested - due to no evidence found.

People and companies I spoke of on the internet about freedoms, were also raided - the NY Times - for example. For reporting - not a secret - but public information - SWIFT. The program has existed for over 8 years...

Somehow the law changed again, search and seziure is legal now, and the cops do not even have to knock to enter a home - for any reason with "reasonable doubt".

I am Not a terrorist, and love this country, it is my home and has been for 42 years - I am a citizen of the USA.

but somehow, my freedoms are disappearing one by one, and no one can stop it.

This is the same thing that happened near the start of WWII to the Germans, the Jews, and many other nations.

Freedom needs limits, and this I understand. But is it necessary to invade peoples homes, listen to their conversations, and monitor all their actions, hopes, dreams, desires.. Just to be free.. I think not..

This is the Orwellian world of 1984 (

But to attack other countries for suspect behaviour, or to place blame when their is no proof, and to hold people in prison just because they think and believe different, this is wrong and needs to be stopped.

Posted by: John E | July 11, 2006 11:40 PM

Will the Government make sure that KEn Lay is really dead rather than at some resort or Caribbean getaway. I don't trust reports that he's dead. "Mala yerba no muere," at least not tht easily. I say the American people deserve to make sure that's his body that's getting incinerated.
I ask on behalf of people I know whose lives were personally destroyed by this thief and the high Government officials who allowed this to happen.

Posted by: Rich Coaster | July 11, 2006 11:54 PM

Will the Government make sure that KEn Lay is really dead rather than at some resort or Caribbean getaway. I don't trust reports that he's dead. "Mala yerba no muere," at least not that easily. I say the American people deserve to make sure that's his body that's getting incinerated.
I ask on behalf of people I know whose lives were personally destroyed by this thief and the high Government officials who allowed this to happen.

Posted by: Rich Coaster | July 11, 2006 11:54 PM

You wrote:
"Clinton was a complete disaster for this country. He did nothing.."
LOL! , nah, he just balanced the budget, presided over the biggest economic expansion in US history, nearly pulled off a peace deal between Israel and Palistine (that Arafat first agreed to..then reniged on), was watching Bin Ladin like a hawk, blew up his training camps in Afghanistan with a cruse missle attack, had standing orders to take him out when they could get a clear shot, finally put together the combination of force and diplomacy that resulted in defusing the situation in Kosovo...the list goes on.

".. including anything to do with combatting terrorism, .."
BTW..what did Bush do as soon as he got into office? Told the CIA and Richard Clarke he had bigger things on his mind that Bin need to have any more one on one's with the head of the NSA...(Rice).

"vetoing the North Korea treat of 1997 (with bipartisan support), "
What? What are you blithering about? Hard to veto somethng that never existed. I suggest you study the period between the time Clinton took office, and Bush took office. N Korean plutonium under IAEA inspection and seal...until Bush got in there screwed everything up and N Korea withdrew from the Nucleaar Non-Proliforation treaty, threw out the IAEA etc. Resulting in what Bush has accomplished in N.Korea to date: nada... zip... nothing.

"and virtually anything that would have made him unpopular with the extreme left (like his butt-ugly butch wife).
Clinton was never popular with the extreme left, and never cared to be. On many issues, like balancing the budget, he was to the right of some Republicans.

He set the defense program back 20 years (ask any CIA official to comment on that one),
Have you been to a bookstore lately? I mean, I know you must have just gotten back from whatever bizarre planet you have been on but since shortly after 911, every bookstore in the USA has a table full of books absolutely blasting the hell out of the Bush administration. Yeah, they were smacking around Clinton a bit too, but do you know what the most popular word applied to Bush in those books was? Incompetent. Hey, seen Colin Powell's latest interviews? LOL! Talk about ex-officals trashing someone..the look on his face when Barbara Walters asked him if he had been lied to by Bush and his minions was telling.

Pssst! Bush is not a conservative. He is not even a real Republican. He is not even a real Texan. He is a Skull and Bones Yaley addict who Jesus saved from booze and coke after he came out from hiding in the Air Force Reserve while John McCain rotted in Hanoi so Bushie could grow up to ruin every business, sports team and state he got his hands on and fool all the other air-head party boy rednecks in this country into voting for him for President, lie his ass off and spend money like there was no tomorrow. For many, there will not be. He is the most unreal President of all time.

Posted by: Goldwarer Republican | July 12, 2006 12:45 AM

Clinton had 8 years to address the threat from Al Qaeda and he did nothing.

After the WTC bombing in 1993? Nothing.
Khobar? Nothing.
The embassies in Africa? Nothing.
USS Cole? Nothing.

You may not agree with what Bush is doing after 9/11 but at least he is trying something.

As for Gitmo, these are captured enemy combatants with no uniforms, no distinguishable insignia's, and who follow no established rules of warfare. The Geneva Conventions offer them no protections and we are free to hold them until hostilities end. Have the Taliban or Al Qaeda surrendered yet? I didn't think so. They should receive no trial, this is not the Lawsuit on Terror it's the War on Terror and you don't win wars in the courtroom.

Posted by: CommonSense | July 13, 2006 12:30 PM

Al Queada were part of this government...

jeez, wann a play?

Clinton? Appeal to emotion? Afraid of sex, because you don't get any in prison?


labels are an attempt to dissuade voters from thinking and buy the label...



Posted by: I thought | July 15, 2006 07:14 PM

I received this in October of 2004, and I wondered at the validity of's about Afghanistan and GITMO

From Karl W. B. SchwarzPresident, Chief Executive Officer
Patmos Nanotechnologies, LLC

By Email, By Facsimile to White House

Mr. President,

I am a Conservative Christian Republican that has no intentions of
voting for you in this year's election and many other Conservative
Republicans are following me.

America demands the TRUTH and not after the elections; this nation demands the truth from you RIGHT NOW! This letter and an identical email will be going out to hundreds of thousands by me, millions by others. The following content was sent to the White House by facsimile earlier today from Ground Zero in New York City.

1. I demand as an American citizen that you lift the "gag order" on Sibel D. Edmonds and let Americans know what foreign names and what AMERICAN NAMES she uncovered in her FBI translations that were involved in drug trafficking, money laundering and the financing of 9-11.Her facts and your "official story" lies do not add up. Americans demand the truth on that matter before the election.

2. I demand to know what energy companies were in that Cheney Energy Task Force meeting and what discussions there were as to the steps that would be taken to remove the Taliban and Bridas Corporation as the last remaining obstacle to the United States controlling the Trans-Afghanistan Pipeline. I met that company in 1999 and have known since then about the Bridas v Unocal, $15 billion interference of contract lawsuit in US District Court, Southern District of Texas. I also know about the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals decision on September 9, 2003 that upheld the Bridas $500 million arbitration settlement and the March 22, 2004 denial of Writ of Certiorari at the United States Supreme Court, Case 03-1018, Turkmenneft v Bridas.

3. I demand to know how many prisoners are being held at GITMO and other places that are either BRIDAS EMPLOYEES or are persons that know all about Bridas Corporation and what your administration did to get control of that Trans-Afghanistan pipeline.

4. I demand to know how many board meetings Condoleezza Rice and Thomas Kean sat in on at Chevron and Amerada Hess where it was discussed how they were going to deal with making the billions in "Big Oil" investments into a land locked Caspian Basin and how to get rid of the Taliban and Bridas so they could turn those investments into cash flow. How many times did Big Oil ask for military force to complete a commercial transaction they could not get under their control, and on what exact date did you agree to provide such military force - prior to 9-11? Isn't it true Mr. Bush that the Cheney Energy Task Force discussed that attack on Afghanistan and removal of the Taliban / Bridas obstacle once and for all - and did so well in advance of 9-11?

5. I demand to know why you appointed 10 persons to the 9-11 Commission, 8 of which are directly benefiting by the Taliban / Bridas "contract" obstacle being removed - breached with military force, and the big Caspian Oil deals that are now coming to market. No, America does not 'thank you' for that nor do we hold such despicable conduct up high.

6. I demand to know what US Oil Company stepped up as the sponsor of that OPIC and Asia Development Bank funded Trans-Afghanistan pipeline and what US company is constructing that pipeline right now, and what US firms are supplying the key components and their relationship to your administration.

7. I demand that you identify the company and persons who were going around Bridas to be "natural gas suppliers" to the US owned natural gas electrical generation plants in Pakistan (Dynegy - Illinova /Tenaska, El Paso (2 OPIC financed transactions) and others.

8. I demand to know why you have not been truthful with the American public that your GWOT and military policy are protecting the Caspian Basin Oil and Gas deals for many of your Bush Pioneers, some $9.6 trillion in oil and about $3 trillion in natural gas, now mostly in the hands of your elite wealthy contributors and some elite Liberals to keep this all quiet.

9. I demand to know what role the post-bankruptcy ENRON (Prisma Energy International, Cayman Islands) is playing in the Caspian Basin area, the same Enron that uses the law firm of Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw [Richard Ben Veniste, 9-11 Commission] that established the offshore SPE's for assets that were never under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court.

10. I demand to know why you appointed Richard Ben Veniste to the 9-11 Commission when it was his law firm that was stalling Bridas Corporation at the Fifth Circuit US Court of Appeals in the matter of Bridas Corporation v.Turkmenneft and his law firm is directly involved in Pakistan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan and your administration.


I deleted the other 20 points....if you're really into supporting the law, instead of your party...

I would appreciate some real examination.


Posted by: You really should verify point #3 | July 15, 2006 07:21 PM

where are a couple of cops to arrest the president along with his Joint Chief of Staffs and Vice President...

_that_ would be appropriate, anything less is inappropriate...

just looking over the email above and Negropontes' history is enough to convince me that I've been too nice....

and you _know_ I've not been nice at all...

what about the possibility that some of the people are in GITMO because they got in the way of an OIL DEAL...then you go nahhh...

but looking at what Negroponte covered up in Central America, it's the same thing with thousands being killed in order to maintain economic control of a region, including teaching nuns how to fly...

Even Argentina is mentioned in the email above...too many corroberations


and actually I think going up to the Hague for WAR CRIMES is light.

...just call me reasonable

I thought the bushes were just caste concious, selfish and stupid, not truly evil.
I was wrong...put them away

Halliburton $9 to $90 since this little bang up started,

and if I read the previous email correctly, well bushco managed to snag 12 TRILLION by getting rid of BRIDAS...

not bad for using _your_ military to do his legal work...

oh yea

Posted by: hye zouksheepswool.. | July 15, 2006 07:30 PM

the thing is,

we're still fighting what the original patriots were fighting...

monied families...royalty, le roi

and them gaining control of government resources to their advantage and to everyone elses' disadvantage...

that is why there are term limits, so one man or family can not _stay_ in so long as to become _the system_

papa bush was in for over 50 years, making friends making connections, little georgie inherited it all, or they inherited him and he gave them the keys to run the's for family...his

that is what royalty does.
they run countries, they use peasants, they kill, murder and asassinate those that don't listen to them...

democracy? right, they believe in that as about as much as they believe in communism...

if you were rich and someone was going to take your money and give it to the poor, and you didn't know how to anything except control would you feel?

going to make sure it wouldn't happen by controlling the media?

what EXACTLY was McCarthy on about, what triggered him? well what about all the money that was lost to George H.W. Bushes Uncle Walker in Cuba, his holdings in the West Indies trading small piece of cheese...rumour has it that George H.W. Bush, Bush Sr. to the newcomers, was working with the CIA in Florida...circa 50's

and let's not forget that the MAFIA had BIG gambling casinos in Cuba think they lost any money?

Who was George H.W. Bush working with to kill Castro? CIA/MAFIA that seems like a familiar pairing, doesn't it?

civil liberties are the essence of what the American Revolution was about, being against

1. having your civil liberties suspended

2. your country sold out from underneath of whatever price they can get...

is the essence of patriotism...

you fought for this country, the liberties that are enjoyed by all that live here now, such as they exist and _built_ the companies, that became successful and are leaving their employees behind as a debt load to the rest of the country, moving factories overseas, and selling your jobs...with no thought to _your_ future.
this is _your_ land

not some intimidating aholes', with his freaky Director of Intelligence that supports throwing NUNS out of helicopters, an administration and complicit congress that wants to sell you faulty election machines so they don't have to actually get elected...just make you buy that

they sell you homophobia as a _tactic_, or a gawd that _they_ don't believe in...because gawd is a tactic to them...

defeat the ugliness of their souls by confronting them...with who and what they are...

don't be shy, just say it, "you're greedy, unpatriotic, back stabbing mofos..."
and then eat their pets...pinky extended...

their pet pork products...bring back America for Americans, and mean it


Posted by: the annointed | July 15, 2006 07:43 PM

you sound more like someone selling something he doesn't want..

the truth coming out

how's your daughter, did that presidential assignment work out for her?'s bob?

Posted by: dear common sense? | July 15, 2006 07:49 PM

the current administration and complicit congress doesn't want public trials for GITMO people...

it's called "HOUSE OF CARDS,"

and I'm the wind...

3. I demand to know how many prisoners are being held at GITMO and other places that are either BRIDAS EMPLOYEES or are persons that know all about Bridas Corporation and what your administration did to get control of that Trans-Afghanistan pipeline.

perhaps they're being imprisoned for being able to talk about using the MILITARY for domestic purposes....

are you paying for the president to get rich on your _dime_

it shure looks thet wayh...

and Tom Delay, htere's a pposter child for geerd eh?


Posted by: _THIS_ IS_THE_REASON_ | July 15, 2006 07:56 PM

common sense sayz:

As for Gitmo, these are captured enemy combatants with no uniforms, no distinguishable insignia's, and who follow no established rules of warfare.

is that what they are or are they civilians that can place bush and company at the scence of a few _CRIMES_

since you're complicit, Mr. Common, you're also guilty of treason





Posted by: oh, is that what they are | July 15, 2006 08:01 PM

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