Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Freedom Of Speech Denied

The reading over of some of the released memos from the Department of Justice under control of the war criminals gave me a sense of deja vu. The argument that Froomkin was brought up short by, I heard before in federal court.

The war on terror was more important than freedom of speech, and occasioned denying it to U.S. citizens.

That was part of the government's closing argument in the trial of the Holy Land Foundation.

Ari Shapiro reports for NPR: "About a month ago, the American Civil Liberties Union sent the Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel a letter and a chart. The chart listed 55 classified Bush administration legal memos on national security issues. The letter basically said, 'release these memos.'

"Some of the memos that the Justice Department declassified Monday were not even on the ACLU's list.

"'So there are dozens of memos that are still secret,' said Jameel Jaffer, director of the ACLU's national security project. They include 'memos that provided the basis for the national security agency's warrantless wiretapping program and memos that provided the basis for the CIA's torture program.'...

"One reason there's a lot of interest in these documents is that they could contain some surprises. For example, one memo declassified Monday is dated Oct. 23, 2001. It asserts that the military can ignore Americans' Fourth Amendment privacy rights and conduct searches against suspected terrorists without a warrant. It's a controversial claim, but the public learned about the assertion years ago in a footnote to another Justice Department document. The public did not know about a line in the same memo that said: 'First Amendment speech and press rights may also be subordinated to the overriding need to wage war successfully.'" (Emphasis added.)

The administration just past has been a treacherous eight years for the U.S. It should be prosecuted, and I am particularly hoping that Speaker Nancy Pelosi's insistence on coming prosecutions, rather than mere investigations, will help to preserve witnesses from being given immunity.

In an interview last week with MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi declared that she “absolutely” supports the criminal investigation and potential prosecution of Bush officials, stating: “We have to have the facts. . . . We are unhappy about certain things; we anecdotally know about certain things. We will have the documentation of it, and we can go forward.”

The country was betrayed, its institutions used against it, and the use of our funds to bankrupt us was nothing short of theft and fraud.

Criminal action is in order.

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