War on Terrorism

Book Review: Jingo Democrats

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The Emergency State: America’s Pursuit of Absolute Security at All Costs by David C. Unger (New York: Penguin Press, 2012), 368 pages. During a meeting on the Bosnian crisis in the early 1990s, Madeleine Albright, the U.S. ambassador to the UN, furiously asked Colin Powell, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, “What’s the point of having this superb ... [click for more]

Close Guantánamo, Free the Afghans

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In the coverage of the ongoing, prisonwide hunger strike at Guantánamo, which is now in its fourth month, there has been widespread recognition that it is unacceptable to indefinitely detain the 86 prisoners (out of 166 in total) who were cleared for release more than three years ago by the president’s own interagency task force. These men ... [click for more]

TGIF: Criminal Government

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“A nonpartisan, independent review of interrogation and detention programs in the years after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks concludes that ‘it is indisputable that the United States engaged in the practice of torture’ and that the nation’s highest officials bore ultimate responsibility for it.” So began a page-one story in the New York Times that should have ... [click for more]

How Drug-Courier Profiles Begot Terrorist Watch Lists

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Friends of freedom have been chagrined over the past decade to learn that federal terrorist watch lists incorporate criteria — such as openly praising the Constitution or the Second Amendment — that put them in the crosshairs. More than a million names are now included on the catch-all terrorist watch list maintained by U.S. government agencies. The feds’ definition ... [click for more]

TGIF: Liberty, Security, and Terrorism

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“Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.” It would be nice if Benjamin Franklin’s famous aphorism were as widely believed as it is quoted. I doubt that Sen. Lindsey Graham and his ilk would express disagreement, but one cannot really embrace Franklin’s wisdom while also claiming that ... [click for more]

TGIF: Government Should Stop Its Own Violence First

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The horrific bombings at the Boston Marathon have left us all stunned. We still don’t know the perpetrators’ motive, but there are some things we do know. The bombers chose the most closely monitored location in all of Boston. They could have chosen a different site, knowing that all eyes were on the marathon route. But no. They chose the ... [click for more]

Can We Have a Discussion about Releasing the Majority of the Guantánamo Prisoners?

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With the prisonwide hunger strike at Guantánamo now entering its third month, conditions at the prison have come under sustained scrutiny for the first time in many years, and media outlets, both domestic and international, have learned, or have been reminded, that 166 men remain at the prison. They remain imprisoned despite Barack Obama’s promise to close Guantánamo, ... [click for more]

Prison-Wide Hunger Strike Still Rages at Guantánamo

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Three weeks ago, I wrote an article entitled, “A Huge Hunger Strike at Guantánamo,” in which I reported the stories emerging from Guantánamo of a prison-wide hunger strike, the most severe since George W. Bush was president, and the gulf between what was being reported by the prisoners through their attorneys, and what the U.S. authorities were ... [click for more]
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