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SATURDAY, MARCH 6, 2010
FASHION COMMENTARY FROM HUGO CHAVEZ – AT 6:18 P.M. ET: Mr. Chavez, of late the dictator of Venezuela, is making his usual astute observations:
CARACAS (Reuters) – Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez mocked U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Friday as a "blond" version of her predecessor, and said a row with Spain over alleged links with rebel groups was over.
Visiting Latin America this week, Clinton said the Obama administration's policies towards the region were helping blunt the criticism of the United States by leftist leaders like Chavez.
Not so fast, Hil.
"To me, she's like Condoleezza Rice ... a blond Condoleezza," said the Venezuelan, referring to former U.S. president George W. Bush's secretary of state, with whom he exchanged frequent harsh words at long-distance.
Citing comments by Clinton in Brazil, Chavez said she was proving to be equally aggressive. "She comes to Brazil to provoke us, to try and divide us from our brothers."
COMMENT: So Hillary is a blond Condoleezza. Nothing like a little sexism from the representative of the downtrodden masses. We await denunciations from American "feminist" groups. I suspect we'll be waiting a long time. The "feminist" groups have now fallen in line as part of the Marxist left. No criticism of Chavez is tolerated.
And once again we see the failure of Obama's foreign policy. The leftist Dems think that by spinning some sweet talk, thugs change. They don't. They just get bolder, knowing they are dealing with weakness.
March 6, 2010 Permalink
TERRORISTS DEALING WITH THEIR OWN TERRORISTS – AT 5:54 P.M. ET: If this weren't so serious, it would be hilarious. From Fox:
Hamas -- the Palestinian militant group whose history of violence toward Israel landed it on the United States' terror list -- seems to be dealing with its own terrorism problem.
The commander of Hamas' armed wing recently penned an urgent letter to Hamas leadership in Damascus lamenting what he called Hamas's "deteriorating" authority in the Gaza Strip.
In the dispatch, Ahmed Ja’abri claims that Hamas is losing control over the territory, according to reports by London-based Arab-language newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat quoted by the Jerusalem Post.
"Several worrisome explosions recently occurred in Gaza, security anarchy is extensive, and al-Kassam men are being killed," Ja'abri said in the letter, according to reports.
The letter comes after a series of assassinations and explosions near the offices of senior Hamas military commanders and of Hamas prime minister, Ismail Haniyeh, according to the Jerusalem Post. No individual or group has taken credit for the attacks.
Hamas leadership in Gaza alleges that radical "jihadi" Islamist movements are to blame for the bombings, A-Sharq Al-Awsat reports.
COMMENT: Huh? Radical jihadi movements are to blame? Isn't Hamas a radical jihadi movement?
The political left will go crazy over this. What is the "root cause" of jihadi violence against a violent jihadi group? Of course, we know, don't we? It's BUSH (!!). He's the one. If it weren't for BUSH (!!), Hamas would just be one harmonious brotherhood of armed killers.
Naturally, the European Union and other serious bureaucrats will insist that Israel deal seriously with Hamas, even though Hamas can't even control the grocery store at the end of the block.
March 6, 2010 Permalink
WHOOPS – AT 12:02 P.M. ET: We've written here of our doubts about Mitt Romney as the 2012 GOP nominee for president. He's a fine man, and has a reputation for competence. But at times he has a tin ear. He sometimes sounds too much like the corporate Republicans of the past, a bit too close to big business to form a real bond with the public.
Romney recently listed his complaints about the Obama administration's economic policy. Most were entirely legitimate, and to the point. But then he complained that the administration wanted to regulate "executive pay." Now, he may well be right about that, but if he thinks that defending the pay of executives who take eight or ten million dollars in "compensation" from a failing company will endear him to the public, he needs come counseling. Hasn't he noticed the growing resentment of Americans, across the political spectrum, to some of these Wall Street "executives" who couldn't manage their own kitchens, yet take enormous "bonuses" for Lord knows what.
Now Romney has done it again:
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Potential Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney criticized President Barack Obama on Friday for his recent attacks on health insurance companies.
Obama has argued this week for congressional passage of a healthcare overhaul by pointing to rate increases by insurance companies that have made insurance unaffordable for many people...
...Romney, who is contemplating a run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012, said in remarks at the National Press Club that the problems within the U.S. healthcare system are more complicated than simply zeroing in on the insurance industry.
"Gosh, how disappointing it was to see the president take on the health insurance companies, as if the reason that healthcare is expensive in America is because of the insurance companies," Romney said.
"I'm sure there are some insurance companies that deserve blame and we can find them out and point them out," he said. "But this is an issue that is broader than trying to punish some scapegoat."
COMMENT: Again, Romney may, in the strictest sense, be right. But defending insurance companies isn't exactly a winning issue. Americans generally dislike health-insurance companies, in some cases quite intensely. And some of the companies have earned their contempt. There is general agreement, regardless of party, that they have to be required to meet higher standards.
If Romney continues providing these sound bites for his opponents, he'll be crisper than toast.
March 6, 2010 Permalink
ANOTHER DISGRACE, ABSOLUTELY – AT 10:44 A.M. ET: While the world gets more threatening, and Iran prepares to go nuclear, our president insists on a 1960s-style, leftist approach to our own nuclear weapons, putting him in a direct confrontation with the nation's military leaders and his own secretary of defense. From The Politico:
President Barack Obama has been clear. He wants no new nukes.
Pentagon chief Robert Gates has been equally direct, advocating in recent years for a new generation of warheads.
And nearly 14 months into their bipartisan-tinged partnership, Obama and Gates haven’t publicly reconciled their views. Some anti-nuclear activists suspect the pair still don’t see completely eye-to-eye and that Gates has never fully abandoned his goal of refurbishing the American nuclear arsenal with new weapons.
Now, the administration is on the verge of releasing a major nuclear policy review that could call attention to this disagreement between the Democratic president and his holdover Defense Secretary – just in time for a nuclear safety summit Obama is hosting for heads of state next month in Washington.
“Quite clearly,” said Hans Kristensen of the Federation of American Scientists, “the secretary has been stating he sees a need for replacement warheads and new designs, and I’m not sure those are the words the president would want to use at this stage in the process.”
The Obama administration is acutely aware of perceptions that the Nuclear Posture Review has divided senior officials—with Vice President Joe Biden viewed as heading up an arms-control focused camp, and Gates perceived as speaking for a military and nuclear establishment that favors more funding and new weapons programs.
COMMENT: The mainstream media isn't much interested in this story, reflecting its ideological biases. But it's one of the most important stories of our day. The United States is the only nuclear power not to fully upgrade its nuclear weapons. We need a new generation of warheads – reliable and modern – and utterly convincing in its deterrent effect. But the left wing of the Democratic Party is adamantly against this, and that's where Obama resides.
The president has approved some upgrading of our nuclear weapons, but the military feels it needs a new generation. The military is right. We risk an enormous amount if enemies have any question about the reliability of our deterrent arsenal.
March 6, 2010 Permalink
WHILE WE APPEASE HIM – AT 10:31 A.M. ET: The president of the soon-to-be nuclear-equipped Iran expresses the views that make us wonder what an Iran with nuclear weapons would actually do:
TEHRAN (Reuters) - Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Saturday called the September 11 attacks on the United States a "big fabrication" that was used to justify the U.S. war on terrorism, the official IRNA news agency reported.
Ahmadinejad, who often rails against the West and Israel, made the comment in a meeting with Intelligence Ministry personnel.
It came amid escalating tension in the long-running dispute between Iran and the West over Tehran's nuclear program, with the United States pushing for new U.N. sanctions against the major oil producer.
Ahmadinejad described the destruction of the twin towers in New York on September 11, 2001 as a "complicated intelligence scenario and act," IRNA reported.
He added: "The September 11 incident was a big fabrication as a pretext for the campaign against terrorism and a prelude for staging an invasion against Afghanistan." He did not elaborate.
Nearly 3,000 people died in the hijacked airliner attacks on New York and Washington, which were carried out by al Qaeda operatives.
In January, Ahmadinejad termed the September 11 attacks "suspicious" and accused the West of seeking to dominate the Middle East.
COMMENT: So he's a 9-11 "truther" as well. Maybe he can invite some of the nuts from the United States, and they can have a convention.
What is remarkable is that the Obaman "outreach" to Iran has had no effect at all. It hasn't even been acknowledged. Think of the world five years down the line, especially if Obama is still in power.
The defeat of Obama in 2012, just two years away, has got to become the major political priority.
March 6, 2010 Permalink
WHAT AN ABSOLUTE DISGRACE – AT 10:17 A.M. ET: American policy toward Iran has essentially collapsed. The headline on the story reads: WEST DRAFTS WEAKENED IRAN SANCTIONS. This is the result of more than one year of "engagement" by Barack Obama:
Western countries, under pressure from Russia and China, drafted a blueprint for a fourth round of sanctions against Iran which would not tighten the ban on trade between Western banks and the Central Bank of Iran (CBI), Israel Radio reported overnight Friday.
Diplomats at the United Nations were quoted as saying that the United States, Britain, France and Germany accepted Russia’s proposal that the West only ban trading with newly-established Iranian banks, and not increase existing trade limitations with the CBI.
China holds a position similar to Russia’s.
The new UN draft for sanctions against Iran would not put the Islamic republic in a black list of countries obligating all member states to avoid trade with the country, but does allow smaller entities, like the US or the entire bloc of European Union member countries, to implement their own sanctions.
Russia proposed that oversight on trade with Iran be made according to a similar model as current global trade with North Korea.
Additionally, Russia opposes a full weapons embargo against Iran.
A Moscow official was quoted by Israel Radio as saying that the deal to supply Iran with the S-300 anti-missile defense system would go ahead. During a recent visit by Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to the country, Moscow promised not to implement a deal to sell the system after Netanyahu convinced the Russians that such a move would destabilize the region.
COMMENT: We have gotten absolutely nowhere with Iran, and trying to get Hillary Clinton's promised "crippling" sanctions through the UN has proved fruitless.
I suspect we're being laughed at in Tehran, and a few other places as well. This is the fruit of a left-wing Democratic foreign policy. Harry Truman must be turning in his grave.
Question: When will Hillary Clinton realize she's on a doomed mission, and leave, before she's consumed by the failure? Or does she, a child of the sixties, secretly believe in this absurdity?
March 6, 2010 Permalink
FRIDAY, MARCH 5, 2010
WHY JOHNNY CAN'T READ, WRITE, OR FIGURE A GROCERY BILL – AT 11:01 P.M. ET: Detroit is a legendary mess, and here is one reason why. It's incredible. From Fox:
As if Detroit doesn't have enough problems these days, the president of the city's school board offered the shocking admission that he can't pen a coherent sentence.
Otis Mathis, who oversees the academic future of 90,000 public school students, told the Detroit News that he's a "horrible writer" after reports surfaced that he sent a Feb. 29 e-mail to the financial manager of Detroit Public Schools that was rife with spelling, punctuation and usage errors.
"If you saw Sunday's Free Press that shown Robert Bobb the emergency financial manager for Detroit Public Schools, move Mark Twain to Boynton which have three times the number seats then students and was one of the reason's he gave for closing school to many empty seats," the e-mail read, according to the paper.
Mathis, 56, of Detroit, has had difficulties with language as early as fourth grade, when he was placed in special education classes. His college degree was also held up for more than a decade due to repeatedly failing English proficiency exams required for graduation from Wayne State University, the paper reported.
Some parents are now questioning whether Mathis is fit for his role.
COMMENT: Certainly took the parents a bit of time to wake up, don't you think?
When I was very young I was privileged to attend a New York City public school system that had teachers who could diagram an English sentence. Today New York has some teachers who can't even write one. But Detroit puts New York to shame. That's a city that really knows how to fail.
March 5, 2010 Permalink
OUR IRAN POLICY – AT 8:05 P.M. ET: From Rick Richman at Contentions:
Asked today about the apparent lack of progress in convincing Brazil or China of the need for additional sanctions against Iran, Asst. Secretary P.J. Crowley said dialogue will continue and “at the end of the process we are going to present our proposals to the Security Council” for “consequences” for Iran. And what would those proposals be?
QUESTION: Speaking of the UN and a resolution, are you circulating a draft or is – are any of the P-5+1 circulating a draft at the moment?
MR. CROWLEY: There’s no draft resolution. We are working within the P-5+1 and with others on – sharing our ideas on possible steps. I think there’s a growing understanding that Iran should face consequences for its defiance of international obligations. We’ve having very serious and high-level conversations, but there is not, as of yet, a draft resolution text.
Well, is there at least a schedule for producing a draft resolution?
QUESTION: When do you think there will be [a draft text]?
MR. CROWLEY: We don’t have a timetable. We want to move as rapidly as possible, but at the end of this, we want to have action that is effective, sends the right signal, puts the right pressure on Iran, and we hope ultimately secures Iran’s compliance under the NPT and UN Security Council resolutions.
COMMENT: So goes our Iran policy. It's already failed, but the teacher hasn't yet sent home the failure notice. The president seems to have no sense of urgency about Iran, even as the centrifuges keep spinning.
The great failure here is the inability to understand that Barack Obama's coming to power had no chance of changing Iranian policy. That policy was never based on antagonism toward George W. Bush. It was, and is, based on an unchanging ideology that many on the political left refuse to confront, or even understand.
March 5, 2010 Permalink
FAILING UPWARD – AT 7:37 P.M. ET: From The Politico:
Still searching for a permanent host for “This Week,” ABC News is in talks with Christiane Amanpour, the CNN foreign correspondent known more for globe-trotting reporting than talking politics within the Beltway.
Amanpour, through a CNN spokesperson, declined to comment, but sources with knowledge of the hiring process say she’s now in the mix of internal and external candidates ABC is considering to replace George Stephanopoulos, who left for “Good Morning America” in December.
Since Stephanopoulos’s departure, the network has kept the Sunday show seat warm with a steady stream of ABC correspondents: Jake Tapper, Terry Moran, Barbara Walters, Jonathan Karl and Elizabeth Vargas.
COMMENT: Well, CNN is really tanking, so maybe jumping ship wouldn't be a bad idea. Amanpour is appropriately left wing, almost a requirement these days in the MSM. On election day, 2008, she wrote about how she pedaled around New York just soaking up the feeling that a new, bright era was about to begin.
I've never thought she was particularly incisive, and I don't think she has the street sense to do an inside-the-beltway show.
March 5, 2010 Permalink
THIS IS A NEWS SOURCE? – AT 7:23 P.M. ET: A professional Palin hater is making charges that are sweeping the internet. They're trivial, but it's shocking to me that any clown like this would be taken seriously. From the Washington Post:
A Maryland man who wrote a parody of Sarah Palin's autobiography and who says he and his wife flew to Los Angeles to attend the taping of Palin's appearance on NBC's "The Tonight Show" claims NBC sweetened the audience's laughter during her appearance to drown out the deafening silence, which he says was on occasion only broken by his own derisive guffawing.
Responding to Micheal Stinson's claims on the political Web site Daily Kos, NBC said Friday that "neither the audio nor the laughs were enhanced for Sarah Palin's segments on 'The Tonight Show' " this past Tuesday.
I'll take NBC's word on this. I saw the performance. I've worked on The Tonight Show. When I was there we didn't employ "sweetening." I got no feeling whatever that there was any sweetening during Sarah's appearance. You can usually tell because, even if you have a very good "track man" (as in laying down a laugh track), the timing of the laughter is rarely precisely right. It's like lip-synching a song. Some words go well, and others don't.
The idea of using this guy as a news source really annoys me. Get this:
"We're artists and what we mostly need money for is to make more art," he said. He and his wife brought eight copies of their book and distributed six among audience members and show crew. The other two they kept. When some in the audience rose to greet Palin, Stinson says he and his wife danced in place and jumped up and down while waving copies of the book which, he says, were not confiscated by security "to their credit."
Security also did not ask them to leave when his wife continued to dance and wave the book after everyone else in the audience had sat back down, he added. They just asked her to please be seated.
Real class act. This is what makes news.
March 5, 2010 Permalink
ANOTHER ONE GONE - AT 4:46 P.M. ET: From The Politico:
Democratic Rep. Eric Massa will resign from Congress on Monday, only days after reports first surfaced that the freshman New York lawmaker was under investigation by the House ethics committee for allegedly sexually harassing a male staffer.
Massa was preparing the news in the Corning Leader, his local newspaper, but several media outlets were already reporting the news Friday afternoon.
COMMENT: He'll probably say that he wants to spend more time away from his family.
March 5, 2010 Permalink
SOMEBODY NOTICED – AT 9:48 A.M. ET: The Democratic Party is being overwhelmed with scandals. Even The New York Times is noticing:
WASHINGTON — The ethical woes facing Democrats are piling up, with barely a day passing in recent weeks without headlines from Washington to New York and beyond filled with word of scandal or allegations of wrongdoing.
The troubles of Gov. David A. Paterson of New York, followed by those of two of the state’s congressmen, Charles B. Rangel and Eric J. Massa, have added to the ranks of episodes involving prominent Democrats like Eliot Spitzer, Rod R. Blagojevich and John Edwards.
And don't forget all those guys in the Obama administration, with all the questions about their backgrounds. We have a secretary of the treasury who didn't pay some taxes; we had Van Jones, the 9-11 truther; we almost had Tom Daschle, whose tax problems derailed him; and we've got an attorney general who urged the pardon of Marc Rich to satisfy his boss at the time, Bill Clinton.
The National Dishonor Society.
Taken together, the cases have opened the party to the same lines of criticism that Democrats, led by Representatives Nancy Pelosi, now the House speaker, and Rahm Emanuel, now White House chief of staff, used effectively against Republicans in winning control of the House and Senate four years ago.
The mix of power and the temptations of corruption can be a compelling political narrative at any time. But with voters appearing to be in an angry mood and many already inclined to view all things Washington with mistrust, the risks for Democrats could be that much greater this year.
With Election Day still eight months away, there is time to avert a history-is-repeating-itself storyline. But Democrats, who are already on the defensive over the economy, health care and federal spending and are facing a re-energized conservative movement, suddenly have a set of ethical issues to deflect as well. “Speaker Pelosi famously promised the most open, honest and ethical Congress in history,” Representative John A. Boehner of Ohio, the Republican leader, said Thursday. “Yet here we go again.”
COMMENT: Look, you can be sure there are liberal journalists who are probing potential Republican scandals, and they're bound to find some. Dems are especially vulnerable because they control the White House and Congress. But the GOP has to be careful in exploiting the corruption issue. Proposing a new, very public code of ethics, and demanding that the Dems sign onto it, would be one good idea. The GOP has a tendency only to react to things rather than initiate ideas, and that has to stop. Simply saying, "Here we go again," is far from enough.
March 5, 2010 Permalink
QUICK, SWEEP QUICKLY UNDER THE RUG – AT 9:07 A.M. ET: There was a shooting last night in which two Pentagon guards were wounded, and the gunman killed. The shooter has a curious past, as Fox reports:
Resentment of the U.S. government and suspicions over the 9/11 attacks have surfaced in writings by the Californian identified as the gunman who shot two Pentagon police officers before he was mortally wounded in a hail of return fire.
The shooter's death was confirmed early Friday, hours after the Thursday evening assault, as authorities searched for a motive behind the brazen attack. The two officers, grazed by bullets, were treated in a hospital.
Other news sources, with their usual knee-jerk reactions, are assuring us that there is no link to any group, that the guy acted alone, and that we should all move along. But there are some disturbing issues emerging, as there were in the first hours after Fort Hood:
John Patrick Bedell, 36, of Hollister, Calif., was identified as the shooter. Officials said they'd found no immediate connection to terrorism but had not ruled it out.
Signs emerged that Bedell harbored ill feelings toward the government and the armed forces, and had questioned the circumstances behind the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
In an Internet posting, a user by the name JPatrickBedell wrote that he was "determined to see that justice is served" in the death of Marine Col. James Sabow, who was found dead in the backyard of his California home in 1991. The death was ruled a suicide but the case has long been the source of theories of a cover up.
The user named JPatrickBedell wrote the Sabow case was "a step toward establishing the truth of events such as the September 11 demolitions."
COMMENT: This obviously requires further investigation, and not bland reassurance. We've been down this road before. The guy may simply turn out to be a nutjob, but we should not assume it.
March 5, 2010 Permalink
IS THIS SERIOUS? – AT 8:35 A.M. ET: When you're a scientist, and your work is questioned, there are a number of ways to fight back. Here is one, from Fox News:
Undaunted by a rash of scandals over the science underpinning climate change, top climate researchers are plotting to respond with what one scientist involved said needs to be "an outlandishly aggressively partisan approach" to gut the credibility of skeptics.
In private e-mails obtained by The Washington Times, climate scientists at the National Academy of Sciences say they are tired of "being treated like political pawns" and need to fight back in kind. Their strategy includes forming a nonprofit group to organize researchers and use their donations to challenge critics by running a back-page ad in the New York Times.
"Most of our colleagues don't seem to grasp that we're not in a gentlepersons' debate, we're in a street fight against well-funded, merciless enemies who play by entirely different rules," Paul R. Ehrlich, a Stanford University researcher, said in one of the e-mails.
Wait, wait, wait. Is that the same Paul Ehrlich...? Yeah, I looked it up. It's the same guy who became famous in the late sixties and early seventies – he even did the Tonight Show – for predicting the so-called "population bomb." He predicted that there would be famines, awful things, terrible stuff, that the world could not feed itself, etc., etc. His predictions fell well short, and have been largely relegated to the history of scare stories. Ehrlich also suggested that chemicals that could render people sterile be temporarily added to food and water in some areas.
So now he's involved in global warming? And he talks about the enemy – those who dare ask questions – as merciless? Like he showed mercy when he wanted to add those chemicals to food and water?
Some scientists question the tactic and say they should focus instead on perfecting their science, but the researchers who are organizing the effort say the political battle is eroding confidence in their work.
This second group, who want to perfect their science, is correct. No one is looking for a political war. The skeptics are looking for hard science.
If I were a global warmer, why would I not want Paul Ehrlich as my standard bearer?
March 5, 2010 Permalink
BE GONE WITH YOU – AT 8:11 A.M. ET: Ultra-liberal Congressman William Delahunt of Massachusetts, a man known for his pomposity and deep passion for himself, will be departing Congress, leaving a vacancy in a Massachusetts district that went for Scott Brown in the recent senatorial election:
March 5 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. Representative William Delahunt of Massachusetts won’t seek re-election when his term is up this year, becoming the second Democrat in two days to make that decision.
Delahunt’s move was confirmed last night by his spokesman Mark Forest, who said a statement would be posted today. The Boston Globe reported that Delahunt, first elected in 1996, had decided to give up his seat for personal rather than political reasons.
Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts, a fellow Democrat, issued a statement yesterday saying Delahunt’s departure from Congress would leave “a void” because the lawmaker “is an incredibly strong voice for Massachusetts in Washington.”
Kerry also said, “I hope this is not Bill Delahunt’s last chapter in public service.”
Delahunt, 68, was favored to win re-election in a district that includes Cape Cod, Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard.
And now the rest of the story:
Prior to being elected to his House seat, Delahunt was a county district attorney in Massachusetts. He faced questions recently about his tenure in that post because of the office’s handling of the 1986 shooting death of the brother of Amy Bishop, the University of Alabama college professor accused of killing three colleagues last month.
Bishop killed her brother in a shooting that was ruled accidental.
Delahunt has defended the actions his office took in that case.
The problem is, his actions were indefensible, and I suspect part of his decision was based on the likelihood that the 1986 case will be reinvestigated. Since Bishop went on to kill again, it's difficult to see how Delahunt can defend his reckless decision not to prosecute her for the killing of her brother. The record shows that she fired her shotgun three times within a short period, not exactly the picture of an accident. She then went out and tried, at gunpoint, to steal a getaway car.
Delahunt will have to defend his actions from his retirement community.
March 5, 2010 Permalink
IS LIGHT SHINING IN, OR ARE POLLS BEING READ? – AT 8:02 A.M. ET: Apparently, common sense is starting to infiltrate the Obama administration, despite gallant efforts to keep it out. From AP:
WASHINGTON – In a potential reversal, White House advisers are close to recommending that President Barack Obama opt for military tribunals for self-professed Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammed and four of his alleged henchman, senior officials said.
The review of where and how to hold a Sept. 11 trial is not over, so no recommendation is yet before the president and Obama has not made a determination of his own, officials said. The review is not likely to be finished this week.
Officials spoke Thursday on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to discuss private deliberations.
Attorney General Eric Holder decided in November to transfer Mohammed and the four other accused terrorists from the prison at the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to New York City for civilian trials. That was initially supported by city officials, but was later opposed because of costs, security and logistical concerns.
When opposition ballooned further into Congress and an attempted Christmas airline bombing brought massive scrutiny to Obama's terrorism policies, the administration said it would review Holder's trial decision and consider all options for a new location.
In addition to local opposition to a trial, the administration faces pressure on its goal of closing Guantanamo on another front. Republicans in Congress have proposed barring prosecutions of terrorism defendants in federal courts or in reformed military commissions located in the United States.
COMMENT: Already the lines on the left are forming, with the usual suspects in the ACLU claiming that this reversal would be a rejection of "American values." I love it, I love it. Since when is trying an enemy combatant in a civilian court an American value?
March 5, 2010 Permalink