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Sunday, June 17, 2007

Dare We Call It Tyranny?

The American people’s response to President Bush’s “war on terror” should be … terror. The administration, sometimes with Congress’s complicity:

  • is preparing for a 50-year stay in Iraq, complete with 14 military bases and an embassy larger than the Vatican. (Can there be a better recruiting program for al Qaeda?)

  • has abolished habeas corpus, the principle that for centuries has protected people from arbitrary confinement, for noncitizens declared to be “enemy combatants.” (While the federal courts have upheld the abolition of habeas corpus for detainees at Guantanamo Bay and elsewhere overseas, fortunately an appellate court has just ruled against the administration in the case of a legal U.S. resident, Kahlah al-Marri, arrested in the United States, a ruling the administration is appealing.)

  • unilaterally claims the power to use “enhanced interrogation techniques” — torture — on suspected terrorists and to turn them over to foreign governments known to torture prisoners. This has been done to persons later cleared of wrongdoing.

  • runs secret CIA prisons in Europe and elsewhere. Thirty-nine persons seized abroad and believed to have been in U.S. custody have disappeared, according to Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.

  • violates our privacy by secretly accessing foreign phone calls, e-mails, and financial and other records — approved, if at all, only by a rubber-stamp “court.”

  • conducts searches without notice or judicially issued warrants. The administration’s assurances that it does not engage in misconduct are worth little, considering what has already come to light.

    To hold onto the support of the American people for this dictatorial power, the Bush administration has engaged in its own form of terrorism by exposing domestic “plots” involving small rag-tag groups allegedly bent on, among other things, attacking Fort Dix and blowing up fuel tanks and pipelines near JFK International Airport....

  • The rest of the op-ed "Dare We Call It Tyranny" is at The Future of Freedom Foundation website.

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