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According to the U.S. Senate in a vote of 93-7....the U.S. president has the power to declare any U.S. citizen an "enemy of the state", order the indefinite detention of that U.S. citizen, order the assassination of that U.S. citizen, or place that U.S. citizen in Guantanamo to never be heard from again.
All of these new found presidential powers violate the 5th and 6th amendments.....
"No person shall...be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law."
Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.
The Congress shall have Power to declare the Punishment of Treason, but no Attainder of Treason shall work Corruption of Blood, or Forfeiture except during the Life of the Person attainted.
These claims of extra-constitutional powers of the presidency have all been justified since 9-11 on the basis of: "the Constitution is not a suicide compact"...or something similar. Which is supposed to mean that the Constitution, with all its prohibitions on presidential power and guarantees of rights for citizens, is a nice, quaint document and all....but we really can't afford those rights and prohibitions right now. If those rights and prohibitions are continued as outlined by the Framers, it has been claimed repeatedly by our Leaders since 9-11, then those leaders will not be able to guarantee our safety.
Other more cynical and jaded Leaders, like Don Rumsfeld for example, have instructed us that freedoms and constitutional rights are basically meaningless, you know, if you're dead. Translation: constitutional rights and presidential prohibitions are optional during "the long war", "the endless war."
How long will "the long war" continue? How long will Americans be deprived of their rights? How long will the executive branch claim extra-constitutional powers to assassinate U.S. citizens? How long will the U.S. president claim that it's necessary to indefinitely detain anyone, including U.S. citizens, in offshore gulags without rights to due process?
No one knows. That's the benefit of "a long war."
Our permanent military state has arrived....and it's never going away. 10 years and counting and there are no signs that "the long war" is anywhere near over.....Iran, obviously, is our next target. There's much more to destroy in the middle east. There are many more regimes which need changing.
Along similar lines, I was not shocked...but a little surprised....to learn from this Max Blumenthal article that Israeli Border Police and "a unit from the military of Bahrain" assisted the training of U.S. SWAT teams during Urban Shield 2011 held in October in California.
Why were trainers from Israel and Bahrain assisting our civil law enforcers?
At the time, the Alameda County Sheriff’s Department was preparing for an imminent confrontation with the nascent “Occupy” movement that had set up camp in downtown Oakland,...
Although this "training" went on just a few weeks ago....it was not reported anywhere in U.S. media....
Training alongside the American police departments at Urban Shield was the Yamam, an Israeli Border Police unit that claims to specialize in “counter-terror” operations but is better known for its extra-judicial assassinations of Palestinian militant leaders and long record of repression and abuses in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip. Urban Shield also featured a unit from the military of Bahrain, which had just crushed a largely non-violent democratic uprising by opening fire on protest camps and arresting wounded demonstrators when they attempted to enter hospitals. While the involvement of Bahraini soldiers in the drills was a novel phenomenon, the presence of quasi-military Israeli police – whose participation in Urban Shield was not reported anywhere in US media – reflected a disturbing but all-too-common feature of the post-9/11 American security landscape.
I'm not quite sure why the U.S. would want civil law enforcement agencies to imitate the storm trooper tactics of intolerant states, but apparently, we are. Blumentahl calls this "the Israelification of America's security apparatus."
Interestingly enough, even the new torture tactics used by U.S. intelligence officials at the direction of George W. Bush after 9-11 came from Israeli influences...
Karen Greenberg, the director of Fordham School of Law’s Center on National Security and a leading expert on terror and civil liberties, said the Israeli influence on American law enforcement is so extensive it has bled into street-level police conduct. “After 9/11 we reached out to the Israelis on many fronts and one of those fronts was torture,” Greenberg told me. “The training in Iraq and Afghanistan on torture was Israeli training. There’s been a huge downside to taking our cue from the Israelis and now we’re going to spread that into the fabric of everyday American life? It’s counter-terrorism creep. And it’s exactly what you could have predicted would have happened.”
Yes, and The Reverend did predict just such counter-terrorism creep. If constitutional prohibitions on our Leaders can be discarded so easily, if constitutional guarantees to U.S. citizens can be denied so quickly and so easily after 9-11......how can this blatant sense of lawlessness NOT creep into civilian law enforcement.
And so it has.
Not sure about others, but I, for one, do not have any desire to see the U.S. turned into Israel. While Israelis have every right to live in peace in the middle east, as well as elsewhere in the world.....America has no need of Israel's guidance in acting intolerably. And America sure as hell does not need a closed society like Israel's with secretive assassination squads roaming the land in search of enemies. America has no need for occupations of our neighboring countries, America has no need for apartheid.
But it looks like our civilian law enforcers think we do.