Monday, November 13, 2006

no rights?

The White House continues to argue that "enemy combatants" (I believe a term they just made up) have no rights. None. That is, if they were picked up on the "battlefied" (like, maybe, the streets of Rome or elsewhere) they are not entitled to any rights whatsoever, like habeas corpus. As it seems to be fairly well established that many, if not most, of those at Guantanamo are guilty of nothing at all other than perhaps being in the wrong place at the wrong time, somehow this does not seem reasonable. Not only is it not reasonable, it is positively medieval. In fact, it is even worse than that, it is completely barbaric. Think of it, would you want to be picked up arbitrarily (or even not arbitrarily), put in prison with no ability to question why you were arrested, no way to even contact your wife or family, no lawyer to represent you, no hope whatsoever of ever regaining your freedom, and completely helpless to do anything except rot in jail? Does that not strike you as barbaric? Habeas corpus has been one of the most basic features of our legal system since the Magna Carta. Bush/Cheney have done away with it, at least for certain categories of persons. Even barbaric doesn't do justice to this absoluely repugnant, even unbelievable practice. To believe that any human being, anywhere, for any reason, should be subjected to such treatment, is to join with the most repressive, undemocratic, immoral regimes of all time. Think of Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot, Amin, Hussein, among others. That Bush/Cheney want to insist on doing away with habeas corpus surely puts them in this company. Instead of letting these prisoners rot forever in Guantanamo why don't they put them in cages and hang them in their living rooms where they can taunt and torture them at their leisure? What they want to continue doing is disgusting even beyond belief.

Leahy is trying to return us to a previous more sane and fair way of treating prisoners. Let us help him however we can. I certainly don't want the Bush/Cheney sadistic procedure on my conscience. I like to think that justice will ultimately be served.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

These people are out to cut your head off don't you get it?