Saturday, February 17, 2007

Not A Good Week To Be Bush

Terror Suspect Too Traumatized For Trial

LOL, Bush.

You mean to tell me that, with all of the combined intelligence of the entire United States government, no one could have predicted that torturing a dude for nearly four years would leave him too mentally scarred to actually stand trial for his alleged crimes? Oh my Christ.

However, you might be arguing that he was injected with truth serum and is still standing trial, which means he must've been found guilty of something, right? Well, he was originally arrested on charges of planting a dirty bomb, but that apparently changed to a plot to blow up high-rise apartments. Even with the injections of truth serum, they apparently couldn't get him to divulge any information relating to either plot. Eventually, his charges were downgraded to what amounts to the misdemeanor of terrorism charges:
"He faces three counts that include conspiring to murder, kidnap and maim people overseas, and conspiring to support terrorism by supplying money and materials."
A fairly general terror charge; conveniently non-specific, likely because they couldn't pin anything specific on him, but couldn't just let him walk free after nearly four years as a terror suspect because that would be admitting a mistake. If we admit that we arrested a born United States citizen without charge and tortured him for four years as a mistake, it might shine a negative light on the entire "enemy combatant" concept.

What did he do to make him a terror suspect in the first place? He traveled to Egypt, supposedly to study Islam. This sends a clear message from the United States government to the Muslim portion of America that, though they may be free to claim Islam as their faith, any effort to practice or study their religion automatically makes them suspects. Visiting their Holy Land for any reason, automatically makes them terrorists.
"Prosecutors say details about Padilla's detention should be kept out of the trial. They say in court papers that such information could 'distract and inflame' jurors. It is unclear how much information Cooke will allow into next week's hearing."
This is sad and at the same time scary. They are planning to hold a competency trial on the grounds that his treatment during the detention rendered him mentally unfit to stand trial, and the prosecutors want to leave out the details of his treatment, citing as the reason that the information about his treatment might influence the jurors' decision. Quite frankly, in my opinion, the only reason someone might want to hide something is if they know there's something to hide. If the prosecutors honestly believed that Padilla's treatment was fair and overall harmless, they would have no problem allowing the jurors to have access to the information. Thus the fact that they don't want the jurors to see the information should automatically be suspect in the minds of the jurors.
"Padilla expressed concern that telling what happened to him in the brig 'would cause great harm to the government.'"
That kind of anti-American sentiment is exactly the type of thing to associate with terrorism. The guy was quite literally tortured for nearly four years, and he's more afraid of what word of his treatment would do to the government than what secrecy would do to himself? Who in all reality, then does care more about the good of the nation, this "enemy combatant," or the politicians who approved these tactics?

Quite frankly, I'd rather word does get out. We can't go on pretending these kinds of barbaric crimes against humanity don't happen. Maybe if enough people find out about it and start giving a shit, they'll eventually start demanding government officials be held accountable for their actions and decisions, and we can replace those destroying our democracy with people who actually want to uphold it.


Article Mirror (In case USA Today starts charging for archived articles. I'm lazy, so the formatting may be off, but the text is still intact.)

Meanwhile, this just
has not been a good week to be the America's dumbest and most corrupt President. (Mirror)

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