CULTIVATING LIBERALISM
FOR ALL CLIMATES
SINCE 1759
 
Google
 

Free alert to Candide's Notebooks
Your email:

JOIN ME AT MY BULLSHIT SITES

Sixth Amendment Thug
A Lousy Pentagon Lawyer Resigns

Never heard of the Sixth Amendment

Lost in the shuffle of the last weekend’s bombs in Baghdad and twisters in Florida and fabricators in Washington was one bit of welcome news, in so far as the Bush junta is concerned. You remember Charles Stimson. He’s the deputy assistant secretary of defense, “for detainee affairs,” who, speaking in October, said that 300 Guantanamo prisoners might be there for life. Then on on January 11 on Federal News Radio, he said Guantanamo prisoners should not be represented by lawyers, and those lawyers who do represent them should be publicly disgraced. This, specifically, is what Stimson said: “I think, quite honestly, when corporate C.E.O.’s see that those firms are representing the very terrorists who hit their bottom line back in 2001, those C.E.O.’s are going to make those law firms choose between representing terrorists or representing reputable firms.” So he named twelve firms whose lawyers are representing Guantanamo prisoners. There was some outrage, namely from the legal and liberal communities, but not much. I can imagine that to most Americans what Stimson said rang true in that “fuck yeah” sort of way. Most Americans, like Stimson, automatically assume that those prisoners are terrorists whether or not the facts say otherwise, as the facts regarding most of them indeed do say otherwise. Most Americans probably wouldn’t mind if Gideon v. Wainright was overturned, let alone know what it entails — the principle of every criminal defendant’s right to counsel at taxpayer’s expense, if necessary. In the event, the principle doesn’t apply in the case of prisoners in our little concentration camp at Guantanamo Bay. But the Bush junta’s beliefs aside, the prisoners are still entitled to a defense: without those lawyers (who are providing their services pro bono), their cases would not have been heard so that many could be released, and so that those cases could make their way through the federal court system and onto the Supreme Court’s docket, which last June ruled various means of denying the prisoners representation illegal. But the court didn’t declare the junta’s “enemy combatant” designation null, as it should (assuming we still have due process), so the junta finds new ways to deny the prisoners habeas corpus. With Congressional approval. Still, the lawyers persisted. How best to get them out of the way than to publicly brand them as traitors? That’s what Stimson did. The Pentagon “disavowed” what he said. But there’s an enormous distance between disavowing and firing. Stimson stayed on. Until Last week. He resigned. Nobody made him do it. In other words: what he said is condoned by the Pentagon and the Bush junta, only he made the mistake of saying it publicly. He’ll have a plum assignment before long. In corporate America, of course.

Bookmark and Share

THE DAILY JOURNAL
Read Pierre’s Latest at


 
The Latest Comments
 
GOOGLE GOOGLE NEW YORK TIMES NEWSPAPERS NETFLIX UK INDEPENDENT NETFLIX
 
  
RECENTLY IN THE DAILY JOURNAL: NOTEBOOKS ORIGINALS
RECENTLY IN THE DAILY JOURNAL: CRUMBS & CRIBS

   
 
Add to Google Reader or Homepage Subscribe in NewsGator Online Subscribe in Rojo   Add to My AOL Subscribe in FeedLounge Add to netvibes Subscribe in Bloglines Add to The Free Dictionary