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December 12, 2006

ACLU lawsuit

This letter is in reference to “Judge considers ACLU case against Rumsfeld” in Saturday’s Top 10 (12/9, A-2).

Add one more group to the “axis of evil”: the ACLU. Now it is standing up for former prisoners in Iraq and Afghanistan.

First, why is the ACLU — which stands for the American Civil Liberties Union — suing Donald Rumsfeld, on behalf of nine former foreign prisoners in Iraq and Afghanistan?

These people do not fall under the Constitution of the United States. So why would any judge from the United States consider this case? And if they do let it go forward, then add that judge to axis of evil list, too.

I’m tired of hearing this group whining. Change your name to the American Crybaby Lunatic Union.

Brett Richardson
Kansas City



Perhaps I reacted more than I should due to previous comments by others on another thread. You have never been one to trade in personal insults.
That's your inference, and it's possibly correct, but the Constitution doesn't say anything about oversight.



I didn't mean for my post to imply that you resorted to name calling on this thread or any other, but reading it again I see now that it does sound that way - I apologize.

I should have made that statement in a separate post because I was addressing the comment to the original letter writer and to JJ's first post on this thread.


Each branch can over rule the others. It's called a balance of power. Oversight is inherent in that.


Just quibbling, but where in the Constitution is Congressional oversight required? But in any event, what is passed is history, what is to come is to be seen. We will see if the military tribunals go ahead wihout interference.


Congress is supposed to be the deliberative branch of government. Because they didn't do their job we ended up with some seriously flawed laws. For example the Patriot Act and the approval for the war in Iraq.

If the enabling act had been put before Congress before the executive branch first started doing these things, the deliberations would have been over a long time ago. The responsibility for "foot dragging" should be placed where it belongs. On those that tried everything they could to avoid getting the oversight the Constitution requires.


Congress enacted the enabling act for the military tribunials. For some reason it was opposed by many Democrats. My concern is not about oversight but about intentional delay and foot dragging.
Obviously, I am in flat disagreement with many on this blog. However I have never cast doubt on even Sophie's sincerity or called anyone "a terrorist lovin' member of the axis of evil".


Jose Padilla is an American citizen who was held for 3 years by the military before being charged.

"They will be brought befor Military Tribunals if the new Congress doesn't interfere." - Engineer

So Congressional oversight, and our governmental system of checks and balances is now "interference". This from the side that always tells us how incompetent the government is with our tax dollars, yet they are trusted 100% when it comes to any decision they make on the war on terror.

Apparently, anyone that disagrees with Bush, Cheney, JJ and Brett Richardson is a terrorist lovin' member of the axis of evil.


engineer: My problem with this is how "enemy combatant" is defined. Someone captured on the battle field is easily seen as a P.O.W. But what about those that have been "captured" on the streets? Who decides whether they are bad guys or just some schlunk that got caught in a sweep?

I don't trust the government. I think this is why we have courts of law. To have people incarcerated under an undefined term, held without bond, denied the right to even see the evidence against them, scares the crap out of me.

Maybe 100% of the people they are currently holding is really a bad guy. But what prevents them from grabbing you or I off the street and saying we are a bad guy? If this happened how would we prove we weren't? That is the real problem.


It is pretty clear Mr. Rumsfeld violated international conventions and is in fact a War Criminal when he directed the (secret) nabing of foregn citizens in foregn sovern nations without extradition, warrent, or even probable cause, and had them flown out of country (in secret) to (secret) prisions in other foregn countries, that go them with the wink, wink, nod, nod, understanding to torture them. It is also clear that in US prision camps, detainees were subjected to "harsh measures" (read torture), to make the intellegence ops go faster. Yes, they did get some more information, but it proved to be less than reliable, and actually had the US armed forces going in the exact wrong direction going after important leads. (Which is why these meathods don't work well in the long run). We do know from the 2nd WW, when we interogated hundreds of thousands of POWs, that kindness works much better, and continues to have mulitiple payoffs in the future for both combatant sides.

It should be noted that the US consitution protects not only all US citizens, but all alians (non-POWs) as well in the States control and care. Estential rights, such a a right to an attorney, habius corpus, the right to contact the Judical and Legislative Branchs, due process, a speedy trial,etc. If an illegal alien kills someone, he/she still is entitalled to have there day in public court with a jury of their piers. There is no provision in the nations charter documents, that denies what is declared without qualification to be the inalianalbe the rights of man.

(POWs have a different status than regular aliens because of nessary jurisdiction of the military during the limited period of war. They are not considered to be civil criminals and this is actually a legal protection that goes both ways between the sides at war to prevent war crimes, because defending one's nation is not only permitted under the constitution, but that the concept of common defense is actually a foundation stone in it, this understanding is applied equally to our foes.)

The concept of holding men in secret and isolated, for the duration of an undeclared war that has been publically stated by Runsfeld himself to last maybe 100years, means in effect a life sentence, unless a secret military court with secret evidence, and self-incrimadating testimony abtained by torture, sentances them to die early (hanging is the tradional US Military method) is not only absurd, but that we as a Nation would not tolerate such treatment if the places were reversed, so it is hypocritical, and underminds our very Gov. crediablity with our both our needed friends and our growing enemies whom we may need to negociate in good faith with to get our own citizens back.

Most of the detanees at Getmo are just sheep herders, taxi drivers, farmers, etc. and were never high value players. In consideration of the way that they were captured (showing up at a suspect villiage, rounding up ALL the men, putting them in a cattle car, and eventually they end up at Getmo), is not only inefficent, but it virtually garentees that most, if not virtualy all these detainees are the wrong guys. And you don't need to hold them for 5yrs to figure that one out. By not providing them with consitutional due process, the US taxpayer ends up paying the bills for the whole mess indefinately, with no accoutablity to anyone without need to know, which is everyone but the war criminals and their equally guilty insider corporations.

I don't agree the ACLU in general for their athestic, socialist, humanist, liberal agenda bias, but even I must admit once in a while they get things right, this is one of them, and are rooting for them on this one.


Engineer - I'd argue the issue with you but you're and idiot and listen to way too much Rush Limbaugh and Fox News. The old saying applies here, "you can never win an argument with an ignorant man."


Typical response from the left, all words, no substance.


It's always interesting to see how some people rationalize fascism.


There is a great deal of difference between armed enemy combatants taken on foreign battle fields and your own domestic citizens imprisond for political differences. There is also the fact that most of those sent to the gulags were given "trials".


T. Hanson
They will be brought befor Military Tribunals if the new Congress doesn't interfere.


Engineer - The system you apparently advocate is very efficient and worked very well in the Soviet Union for a half century where people like Stalin put some 22 million "enemy combatants" in gulags without legal representation or trials.

T. Hanson

Isn't that the whole reason why we need to bring this to court to prove or disprove that they are being held there illegally?


Big Dreamer
"They are being falsely accused and held for long periods of time without legal representation which violates a number of international laws and treaties as well." What is your factual basis for this? How do you know they are falsely accused? They are enemy combatants and holding them as such is legal. Could you list the international laws and treaties that you believe holding them while the conflict continues violates.


“Do not judge the ACLU so fast as one day they may protect your Civil Liberties against the pseudo-fascist American government.” - big dreamer

True. Judgement of the ACLU should come after any efforts they may or may not have made while protecting our Civil Liberties against a pseudo-socialist American government.


most folks who hate what the ACLU does, would be the first to ask them for help...


JungleJack - Do you mean "enemies of America" like Rush Limbaugh? The ACLU sided with him to prevent his medical records from being seized when authorities were investigating his apparent drug addiction.

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