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Thursday, June 05, 2008


A new contender for the chutzpah crown

Uneasy lies the head with the chutzpah crown; there's always someone else eager to demonstrate they've got more. Today's contender, Air Force Brig. Gen. Tom Hartmann, a top official in the impending war crimes tribunal at Guantanamo:
"In the course of trial, they'll have opportunity to present their case, any way they want to present it subject to rules and procedures. That's a great freedom and a great protection we are providing to them. We think...it is the American way."
The "American way." And who can argue? Kidnapped in a foreign country, spirited away to a series of secret prisons, tortured, held without charges or even human contact for nearly seven years, and now they'll have the opportunity to "present their case." Man, if that isn't "freedom" and the "American way," I just don't know what is. Certainly it's something to crow about, as Hartmann demonstrates.

Hartmann does clarify that "American way" a bit:

Hartmann insisted the trials will be fair even though the evidence may include coerced statements and material so classified that even the defendants can't see it or challenge it.
I guess it all depends on the meaning of the word "fair." And don't worry, however unfair it is now, Hartmann is going to do his best to make it even more so. Although relatives of the 9/11 victims weren't allowed in to the trial right now for logistical reasons, Hartman says it was a "mistake," and that an undetermined number would be allowed to attend future sessions. Because, after all, nothing guarantees a fair trial more than the victims of the crime staring in the faces of the jurors (or judges or whoever is nominally deciding). I don't suppose any of the victims of U.S. imperialism will be allowed in to observe.

In other news of U.S. "justice," a U.S. Marine who participated in the coverup of the murder of 24 Iraqis in Haditha was acquitted. After all, all he did was tell one of those who actually were involved in the murder to delete photos from his camera and laptop. Coverup? I see no coverup here. How could there be, since no one has been convicted (and hardly anyone even charged) with any crime in the first place?

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