Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Articles You May Have Missed


Several things you might have missed:

(1) NPR did a story this morning about law professor Neil Katyal who spent $40,000 of his own money to defend a Guantanamo detainee named Hamdan. Along with Lt. Cmdr. Swift, Katyal took what was described as a guaranteed loss of a case and turned it into one of the most significant supreme Court cases of our time. Katyal was given something in return however. As the articles states,

Katyal went to Guantanamo to meet his client for the first time. Hamdan, who comes from a culture of gifts, gave the lawyer what Katyal calls "literally the
only possessions he had," a few prized sweets -- a date and some raisins.

He had just one question for the lawyer: "Why are you doing this?" As Katyal recounts the meeting, he told Hamdan: "I am doing this for you because my parents came from India to America" for one simple reason, "America doesn't treat people differently because of where they come from. We fought a civil war in part about the idea that all people are guaranteed certain rights, and chief among those is a right to a fair trial."


(2) On Saturday, writing in a Washington Post editorial appropriately entitled "Put My Son on Trial -- or Free Him," Khalid Al-Odah summarizes his demands....

Our demand has been to charge and try them, or to release them. Give the
prisoners due process so their guilt or innocence can be determined fairly. In a
country that presumes innocence, it is categorically unjust to imprison so many
who are probably innocent to punish so few who may be guilty.
Describing his son, Al-Odah writes...
My son is not a terrorist. He was, in fact, a great admirer of American
political values and legal principles before he was kidnapped and
sent to Guantanamo
. Our family is nonetheless willing to undergo the ordeal of trial and judgment, if only the U.S. government would allow it to happen.

Al-Odah founded the Kuwaiti Family Committee to secure the legal rights of foreign nationals imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay.

(3) Keith Olbermann is a Murrow for our times. Here is a link to his blog entry which rebuts Don Rumsfeld's recent speech to the American Legion, in which Rummy invoked images of WWII appeasers as being similar to opponents to W's GWOT.
Mr. Rumsfeld is also personally confused, morally or intellectually, about his own standing in this matter. From Iraq to Katrina, to the entire “Fog of Fear” which continues to envelop this nation, he, Mr. Bush, Mr. Cheney, and their
cronies have — inadvertently or intentionally — profited and benefited, both
personally, and politically. And yet he can stand up, in public, and question the morality and the intellect of those of us who dare ask just for the receipt for the Emporer’s New Clothes? In what country was Mr. Rumsfeld raised? As a child, of whose heroism did he read? On what side of the battle for freedom did he dream one day to fight? With what country has he confused the United States of America?
If you don't catch Olberman's Countdown on MSNBC, you're missing out as it's unlike every other mainstream news show out there and a lot like his quote from above, all delivered with wit and insight.

1 comment:

dtarrell said...

I just read the text of a speech Katyal made to Congress and he discusses his belief in the Unitary Chief Executive, so he sounds like a Neocon. Who'd have thought one of them would strike such a blow to their theory of executive power.