By Ken Theisen
From World Can't Wait | Original Article
A Justice Department-led task force composed of various agencies of the national security state has decided to take the U.S. back to pre-Magna Carta days by concluding that approximately 50 of those held at Gitmo should be held indefinitely without trial.
This was revealed appropriately on the date that was originally set for the closing of the hellhole at Guantánamo by President Obama. Of course the administration has missed that date, January 22, 2010. But now even if Gitmo is eventually closed, prisoners will face indefinite imprisonment somewhere else.
In response to the announcement that President Obama has decided he will detain 50 of the approximately 200 remaining men at Guantánamo without trial indefinitely, the Center for Constitutional Rights issued the following statement:
"Today was supposed to be the deadline by which President Obama would close Guantánamo. Now it will be the anniversary of the president’s decision to abandon our most fundamental constitutional principles. Our nation was built on the idea that no president or king should have the power to imprison people solely at will, that a system of checks and balances on executive authority is the bedrock of a free democracy, and that it is up to the courts to determine whether individuals have engaged in acts that justify depriving them of their liberty.
"Guantánamo remains open, and remains a symbol of lawlessness and abuse. Now the President has committed to holding approximately 50 men without any trial not as a result of anything the men have done in the past but because of a fear of what the men may due in the future and because they have been deemed too difficult to prosecute but too dangerous to release. This is too much power to put into the hands of one person. It is an assault on the rule of law, our principles and our system of justice.”
The task force's findings should come as no surprise. Since taking office a year ago, Obama’s Department of Justice (DOJ) has done everything to defend the national security state created under the Bush regime. Obama’s minions have covered-up the crimes of the Bush regime and continued many of them. DOJ has gone to court to cover up rendition, torture, massive surveillance on all of us, indefinite detention, and various other government crimes over the last year. This latest move is consistent with this despicable conduct.
In response to the latest announcement, Anthony D. Romero, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union stated that, "There is no statutory regime in America that allows us to hold people without charge or trial indefinitely.” But laws apparently mean as little to the Obama administration as they did to the Bush regime. Even though Obama in the past has bragged about teaching Constitutional law, he apparently has no problem ignoring the Constitution when it is convenient to his rule. The right to a trial by jury has disappeared.
Just like arguments advanced by John Yoo, David Addington, and other lawyers of the Bush regime, Obama officials claim that they can hold “terrorist suspects” because Congress authorized the use of force against al-Qaeda and the Taliban shortly after the 9/11 attacks. The DOJ-led task force was composed of representatives of the DOJ, CIA, and FBI. Also represented on the task force were the Departments of Defense, State, and Homeland Security. These various agencies and departments are the very core of the national security state. If the Obama decision is not reversed by a court all of us are subject to indefinite detention, not just alleged terrorists.
The fact that these prisoners have already been held for years without trial is a crime and this latest decision is the act of a criminal government. The decision violates fundamental legal rights and deserves condemnation and resistance. Prisoners at Gitmo have faced torture and death and now they possibly face life in prison – all without trial. This is the justice of the U.S. government!!!