Friday, November 13, 2009

From Politico's "Arena" section this morning:

Putting your enemies on trial is what you do after you win your war. Not before. When you are fighting a war, you need to focus on winning, and there's nothing in Sun Tzu or Clausewitz about due process or right to counsel.

You don't put your enemies on trial during the war, when you have secrets that you want to keep. And you don't put your enemies on trial in New York City, the media hub of the planet, where every protest--to say nothing of any terrorist strike--will be amplified into eternity. (Such terrorist strikes might be "incomprehensible" to President Obama, as he said at Fort Hood earlier this week, but to most of us, the meaning of the attacks is plain enough--they don't like us, and they want to kill us.)

Are we now supposed to say that Khalid Sheikh Mohammad and the other defendants are "innocent until proven guilty"? Do we now have to put "alleged" in front of everything? So it's OK to kill them without a trial in Pakistan, through drones, but if they survive, they can come to America and hang with Ron Kuby and the ghost of William Kunstler?

Indeed, you don't put the lawyers of the, uh, defendants in a place where they can go on TV every night to plead their case, to angle for a mistrial, hype book sales, and generally stir the pot, worldwide.

I thought that getting rid of White House lawyer Greg Craig was supposed to put an end to runaway ACLU-ish proceduralism in the Obama administration. But evidently, all the rest of the Obamans come out of the same Ivy League law school pod.

Attorney General Eric Holder seems determined to make Americans reconsider their 2008 electoral judgment on the presence of Republicans in the Justice Department.


Peter913 said...

Let me see if I got this right: We are putting them on trial because they R innocent B4 proving them guilty?
Boy are we ass h*les!!
How about flying them over Pakistan, pushing them out of the plane and if they survive the fall and shout: 'Allahu Akbar' ('God is the Greatest') they will have earned the right to live! And if they don't, well? .... hey, .... there is always 72 virgins ;-)

I have great faith, I think the airplane option is the best for all concerned! Can I have a few 'Amens' on that?

Unknown said...

If there is a definitive legal precedent or justification for bringing these individuals back to New York City where the attending cost to the tax payers will be most regrettable for a city that is broke, I will stand aside as being bereft of a license to practice law. President Obama has appeared to me to be overly protective of the due process of the Gitmo residents. The visits to the banana republics in the first few weeks of his tenure and the incessant indulgence in his view of how these alleged criminals should be treated, are not easily understood by the American people.

Unknown said...

Something to consider about bringing a Trial of the Century variety trial to New York City is cost. The Greatest City in the World is semantically broke. This essentially means severe cutbacks and layoffs and higher taxes which is a power that governments retain so that they never really hit the skids. As New York residents continue to go broke in the quasi Depression we are going through they do no have the luxury to recoup anything. When you count massive security, traffic snafus, sanitation and the general disruption that such a spectacle will stimulate aimed at an already stressed metropolis, possibly lasting for quite some time, does anybody have an answer in this quirky world we live in? What if a defendant or two or three beats the rap, what would be the societal repercussions to our country and the survivors? Sometimes I think we should put America first at all times. Always.