Napolitano on Bush’s ‘Enemy Combatant’ Declaration

Listening to people you disagree with can be rewarding. Sometimes you learn something that will help you change their mind. Sometimes you learn something that helps you change your own mind. And once in a while you realize that you agree with each other already, without anybody having to change their mind.

I had one of those moments today, reading the op-ed piece in the LA Times by Andrew P. Napolitano, a former judge and the senior judicial analyst at Fox News: ‘Enemy combatants’ cast into a constitutional hell (cypherpunk98/cypherpunk login works). Napolitano hits the nail on the head as to just why it is so dangerous that Bush is claiming he has the authority to declare anyone he wants an ‘enemy combatant’, and throw said combatant into a military brig forever, incommunicado, without charges.

True conservatives (or those I’m going to characterize as such for the current discussion) are motivated by a deep love of country that goes beyond knee-jerk flag-waving. To truly love something one must understand that something, appreciating and cherishing the things that make it special. Like, in the case of this country, the presumption of innocence, and the notion that courts can overrule executives and legislators when they exceed their constitutional authority.

2 Responses to “Napolitano on Bush’s ‘Enemy Combatant’ Declaration”

  1. Michael Williams Says:

    Despite the implication of the LA Times article, Ali Saleh Kahlah Al-Marri is not a US citizen. He is a citizen of Qatar.

    According to that article, only three people have been named as enemy combatants since 9/11/01. The other two are American citizens, and that’s far more troubling to me. Yaser Esam Hamdi was captured fighting in Afghanistan, so no problem there. Jose Padilla is the most controversial, and I’m interested to see how his case plays out.

    (In addition to the 600 or so unnamed prisoners in Guantanamo.)

  2. blunted Says:

    I was just thinking… if they have the right to deport American citizens, where do you deport a natural-born American citizen to?

    “Mrs. Jones, we apologize, but we believe your son may be a terrorist… now lay back and put your feet in these stirrups… this will only hurt for a moment.”

    I’m quite sure they’d just lock ’em up in a brig forever, but the word “deport” has been used, so I was just curious :-)

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