Thursday, May 21, 2009

Obama's trial and conviction of Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani , and our Values

From the President's speech,
We are preparing to transfer another detainee [Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani ] to the Southern District of New York, where he will face trial on charges related to the 1998 bombings of our embassies in Kenya and Tanzania - bombings that killed over 200 people. Preventing this detainee from coming to our shores would prevent his trial and conviction. And after over a decade, it is time to finally see that justice is served, and that is what we intend to do.
Sure sounds to be Obama's got this fellow convicted already.

Recall Chief Justice Stone and Justice Jackson on Nuremberg.
Chief Justice Stone, who once referred to the Nuremberg trials as a "high-grade lynching party," wrote privately in November 1945 that it would not disturb him greatly if the power of the Allied victors was "openly and frankly used to punish the German leaders for being a bad lot, but it disturbs me some to have it dressed up in the habiliments of the common law and the Constitutional safeguards to those charged with crime." Justice Jackson's response to this criticism says a great deal about how he viewed the Nuremberg Trials:

"When did it become a crime to be one of a 'bad lot'? What was the specific badness for which they should be openly and frankly punished? And how did he know what individuals were included in the bad lot? . . . . If it would have been right to punish the vanquished out-of-hand for being a bad lot, what made it wrong to have first a safeguarded hearing to make sure who was bad, and how bad, and of what his badness consisted?"
Bush and Cheney sought the compromise between Stone and Jackson: to sort out the bad lot and hold them for the duration.

Obama sounds to me like he's going to treat terrorists, at least Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani , as common criminals for what can only be Stone's high-grade lynching party. (Or maybe life in a super max with no return home come AQ's Fatwa of surrender).

So who's betraying American Values here? Show trials as criminals for warriors at war with the United States? Obama's words betray him:...would prevent his trial and conviction.

Hold them in Gitmo for the duration. To do otherwise is a lie.

Afterthought: ... would prevent his trial and conviction.... Remember Obama a Constitutional Lawyer... I can't believe this just a slip of his pen in the speech.

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