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Monday, May 23, 2005

Bush--the real "enemy combatant"

Mike Whitney writes about how US citizen Jose Padilla has now been locked up for over three years without due process of law--a clear violation of the Constitution.
Jose Padilla represents the crowning achievement in the war on terror. As the situation in Haiti and Afghanistan steadily deteriorates, and as America's 8 divisions continue to bog-down in the Iraqi quagmire; the administration's one unassailable accomplishment is the death-blow it has delivered to the Bill of Rights. Padilla now faces his 4th year of captivity without any formal charges filed against him and without any reasonable expectation of defending himself in a court of law.

Happy anniversary, Jose.

The government defends its detention of Padilla on the grounds that he is an "enemy combatant". The term "enemy combatant" means "presumed guilty" and its application to US citizens or foreign nationals allows the state to operate outside the confines of international human rights law and the Bill of Rights. Simply put, it is the end of the rule of law in America and a rejection of a legal tradition that dates back 800 years.