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The Asylum

Welcome to the Asylum. This is a site devoted to politics and current events in America, and around the globe. The THREE lunatics posting here are unabashed conservatives that go after the liberal lies and deceit prevalent in the debate of the day. We'd like to add that the views expressed here do not reflect the views of other inmates, nor were any inmates harmed in the creation of this site.

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Liberal Spin Doesn't Define The Law: Congress Does, And They Have

I'm sure many readers are wondering what I mean with that title. Simply put, since the passage of the Detainee Treatment Act the liberals have been decrying it. They have made a number of wild claims that I'd like to address because they're wrong. They're spinning this into something it isn't. And I'm taking their claims one step at a time. The first one, and perhaps the one most hyped by them, is that habeas corpus rights have been revoked.

This is pure and utter nonsense. Habeas corpus is within the Constitution:

The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in cases of rebellion or invasion the public safety may require it.

We are not in a state of "rebellion or invasion." We are at war, with a foreign belligerent. As we do not meet the criteria for a suspension of habeas corpus rights, they can't be suspended. The detainee bill is not a Constitutional Amendment, and amending the document is the only way this right can be removed. It was that important to the Founding Fathers to avoid the mistakes of King George--a man notorious for wrongful imprisonment--that it was specifically placed within the framework of the Constitution. Furthermore, these rights are extended to United States Citizens only:

All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.

Foreign belligerents aren't US citizens, and therefore weren't subject to habeas corpus rights in the first place. Liberals seem fixated on granting these rights to our enemies, despite the acceptance of long-standing jurisprudence and precedent. Such rights have never been extended to our enemies. Furthermore, the bill addresses the habeas corpus concerns quite succinctly:

(a) IN GENERAL.—Section 2241 of title 28, United States Code, is amended by striking both the subsection (e) added by section 1005(e)(1) of Public Law 109–148 (119 Stat. 2742) and the subsection (e) added by added by section 1405(e)(1) of Public Law 109–163 (119 Stat. 3477) and inserting the following new subsection (e):

‘‘(e)(1) No court, justice, or judge shall have jurisdiction to hear or consider an application for a writ of habeas corpus filed by or on behalf of an alien detained by the United States who has been determined by the United States to have been properly detained as an enemy combatant or is awaiting such determination.

‘‘(2) Except as provided in paragraphs (2) and (3) of section 1005(e) of the Detainee Treatment Act of 2005 (10 U.S.C. 801 note), no court, justice, or judge shall have jurisdiction to hear or consider any other action against the United States or its agents relating to any aspect of the detention, transfer, treatment, trial, or conditions of confinement of an alien who is or was detained by the United States and has been determined by the United States to have been properly detained as an enemy combatant or is awaiting such determination.’’

If they have been determined to be an enemy combatant, then the military courts can't hear or consider a writ of habeas corpus. It's that clearly defined. They're not a citizen, and aren't subject to such protections. They do, however, have the right to appeal the decision. The bill contains provisions for the creation of a military appellate review board, and as long as a petition is filed 20 days AFTER the decision is reached, the accused can file an appeal to the DC Circuit Court of Appeals, which has exclusive appellate jurisdiction:

(1)(A) Except as provided in subparagraph (B), the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit shall have exclusive jurisdiction to determine the validity of a final judgment rendered by a military commission (as approved by the convening authority) under this chapter.

‘‘(B) The Court of Appeals may not review the final judgment until all other appeals under this chapter have been waived or exhausted.

‘‘(2) A petition for review must be filed by the accused in the Court of Appeals not later than 20 days after the date on which—

‘‘(A) written notice of the final decision of the Court of Military Commission Review is served on the accused or on defense counsel; or

‘‘(B) the accused submits, in the form prescribed by section 950c of this title, a written notice waiving the right of the accused to review by the Court of Military Commission Review under section 950f of this title.

But then the liberals demand to know the definition of an enemy combatant. There are two definitions in the bill. One for unlawful comabtants:

‘‘(1) UNLAWFUL ENEMY COMBATANT.—(A) The term ‘unlawful enemy combatant’ means—

‘‘(i) a person who has engaged in hostilities or who has purposefully and materially supported hostilities against the United States or its co-belligerents who is not a lawful enemy combatant (including a person who is part of the Taliban, al Qaeda, or associated forces); or

‘‘(ii) a person who, before, on, or after the date of the enactment of the Military Commissions Act of 2006, has been determined to be an unlawful enemy combatant by a Combatant Status Review Tribunal or another competent tribunal established under the authority of the President or the Secretary of Defense.

This tells everybody what the United States deems to be an unlawful combatant. The Geneva Convention goes on to define what is a lawful combatant, and this new bill upholds that. An unlawful combatant is anyone who engages in hostilities with another nation and is not wearing any clearly defined and recognized emblems, is not in any sort of a standard uniform, is not under the command of a clearly-defined field commander, and isn't recognized by any nation Case in point: The recent deal reached by the Pakistani government with Taliban/al-Qaida forces in South Waziristan. If those forces wore the regular uniforms of the Pakistani military, took orders from a defined battlefield commander, and were recognized by Pakistan as members of their armed forces, then they would be lawful combatants under the Geneva Convention.

The bill also defines a lawful combatant:

‘‘(2) LAWFUL ENEMY COMBATANT.—The term ‘lawful enemy combatant’ means a person who is—

‘‘(A) a member of the regular forces of a State party engaged in hostilities against the
United States;

‘‘(B) a member of a militia, volunteer corps, or organized resistance movement belonging to a State party engaged in such hostilities, which are under responsible command, wear a fixed distinctive sign recognizable at a distance, carry their arms openly, and abide by the law
of war; or

‘‘(C) a member of a regular armed force who professes allegiance to a government engaged in such hostilities, but not recognized by the United States.

Those are the same provisions within the Geneva Convention, and as our readers can clearly see, there are distinctions between the two involving what I pointed out, what the Geneva Convention defines, and what this bill reinforces. Now liberals still hold the claim that US citizens can be denied certain rights in this bill. That's a lie. US citizens do have their rights intact. What this bill does address is that US citizens giving aid, comfort, operational assistance, etc., can be tried under the military commissions for acts of terrorism.

Now, I'm about to blow another liberal lie out of the water. They claim that US citizens are subject to the military commissions. According to the bill, that's not true:

‘‘§ 948c. Persons subject to military commissions

‘‘Any alien unlawful enemy combatant is subject to trial by military commission under this chapter.

‘‘§ 948d. Jurisdiction of military commissions
‘‘(a) JURISDICTION.—A military commission under this chapter shall have jurisdiction to try any offense made punishable by this chapter or the law of war when committed by an alien unlawful enemy combatant before, on, or after September 11, 2001.

When it comes to the lawful comabtants, the bill states:

‘‘(b) LAWFUL ENEMY COMBATANTS.—Military commissions under this chapter shall not have jurisdiction over lawful enemy combatants. Lawful enemy combatants who violate the law of war are subject to chapter 47 of this title. Courts-martial established under that chapter shall have jurisdiction to try a lawful enemy combatant for any offense made punishable under this chapter.

Nothing in the jurisdiction outline, or further definitions regarding combatants, identify that the military commissions have jurisdiction over US citizens. They will be charged accordingly for crimes the government believes they have committed. Even if I decide to strap on a bomb vest, and walk into a mall here in Arizona today, I'm not subject to e military commission. I will be arrested and charged (provided I'm still in a semi-identifiable piece and not scattered all over Macy's.) I will have committed a crime, and as a US citizen I have certain rights. It sucks (for all those on the right that would like to see citizens like that lined up and shot; I'm right there with them) but it's the law. And that's a simplistic fact that the liberals fail to see. NO LAW passed by Congress may trump the Constitution unless it's an amendment to the document, and it passes Constitutional muster from the Supreme Court.I know the liberals are scrwmaing that this bill is unconstitutional, but for all the amateur 'Net-born lawyers out there, trust the REAL lawyers on this. It's constitutional.

The final point the liberals like to bring up is torture; specifically that this bill approves of it. Nothing could be further from the truth. Let's start with the provisions regarding what the military commissions can accept as evidence and testimony:


A statement obtained by use of torture shall not be admissible in a military commission under this chapter, except against a person accused of torture as evidence that the statement was made.

I do hope the liberals caught that phrase--"shall not be admissible." If our troops or interrogators use torture to obtain ANY information, that information has to be tossed out. It is no different than a police officer utilizing duress to obtain a confession. You can't do it. The "except against a person accused of torture" exemption refers to those that have been tortured by the accused. Their statements can be used as evidence against them for their actions. That doesn't mean we can torture a torturer. It means his victims, if still alive, can be brought in to testify against him, showing his methods for extracting information from them. And the bill defines torture, too:

‘‘(11) TORTURE.—

‘‘(A) OFFENSE.—Any person subject to this chapter who commits an act specifically intended to inflict severe physical or mental pain or suffering (other than pain or suffering incidental to lawful sanctions) upon another person within his custody or physical control for the purpose of obtaining information or a confession, punishment, intimidation, coercion, or any reason based on discrimination of any kind, shall be punished, if death results to one or more of the victims, by death or such other punishment as a military commission under this
chapter may direct, and, if death does not result to any of the victims, by such punishment, other than death, as a military commission under this chapter may direct.

In this section, the term ‘severe mental pain or suffering’ has the meaning given that term in section 2340(2) of title 18.

In this paragraph:
‘‘(i) The term ‘serious physical pain or suffering’ means bodily injury that involves—

‘‘(I) a substantial risk of death;
‘‘(II) extreme physical pain;
‘‘(III) a burn or physical disfigurement of a serious nature (other than cuts, abrasions, or bruises); or
‘‘(IV) significant loss or impairment of the function of a bodily member, organ, or mental faculty.

‘‘(ii) The term ‘severe mental pain or suffering’ has the meaning given that term in section 2340(2) of title 18.

The bill itself repudiates the liberals. Either these people haven't read it, or they fail to grasp the understanding of the bill. There is no torture accepted in the bill. US citizens aren't subject to the military commissions. The combatants are clearly defined and identified between "lawful" and "unlawful." The Geneva Convention's provisions are still intact, and were not "ransacked," as some liberals have described them to be. And last, buyt not least, habeas corpus privileges and rights aren't being given to our enemy, and the bill specifically states that tsuch privileges apply only to citizens.

So what can we discern from the talking points of the liberals coming out after this bill? We can, based on their actions over the last several days, easily ascertain this simple idea through logic. These people are arguing ON BEHALF of our enemies rather than America. Thier nation is at war, and the prisoners we take from battle, they want rights given to them. They want them to "have their day in court." Those people will, in the defined military commissions the bill grants. And it's not as though these people are screwed when the decision is rendered. They can appeal it. It goes through the military commission appellate review board, and can be appealed up to the DC Circuit Court.

In conclusion, the antics of the liberals over this issue is appalling. They're showing the nation where their hearts and loyalties lie when they scream for things like habeas corpus for terrorists. When they shriek the bill condones torture, and it doesn't, the statement makes them look stupid. Truly stupid, in the overall sense of the word. They remind me of children that live in their own little world with their own little rules, and they throw an absolute tantrum anything comes along and disturbs it. But their tantrums are as asinine as their talking points.

To readers that are of the liberal persuyasion, I hgighly recommend reading the bill before you start throwing barbs out. You will only continue to look as foolish as the elected officals that can't seem to comprehend the clear and concise English language within this bill. It's not written in Greek, and it's not difficult to read it and understand it's meaning. Unitl the liberals do understand what's going on, in regard to this bill and the war, they're going to be on the side of the moonbats, who are equally as uneducated, but that's what we expect nowadays. A bunch of children who stamp their feet and hold their breath until they get their way.

And thank God they didn't get their way on this legislation. If they did, these guys would be cut loose, and hgeading back to the field of battle to kill more of our troops and innocent civilians. Marcie's correct. These people are animals. The liberals want to treat these guys like the family pet. We clear-minded individuals would prefer they be put down like a rabid dog.

Sabrina McKinney


Blogger Republican Jen said...

I doubt they've read it. This is a very good analysis of the law. When our people are caught and kidnapped, the terrorists aren't exactly nice to them. McCain's stint in the Hanoi Hotel is almost better than what they go through today.

6:55 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A job well done. You are concise with your easy readable explanations. I've about had it with those that fail to understand that our Constitution provides for ways it can be amended. Congress cannot amend it. The President cannot amend it. Only, we the people, the citizens can amend it. Geesh! Rawriter

8:12 AM  

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