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  Nostalgia ain't what it used to be

Thursday, 18 October, 2018
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The Guantanamo Bay Gulag

Date: 11 September, 2005

By: Chief

Imagefter our excursion into Afghanistan started around October of 2001, King George the Bush decided that he could have people, Afgani and others, that were caught in Afghanistan detained — indefinitely. Where or how the King came up with this absurd idea is beyond the comprehension of any reasonable person. But who is to say that the King is reasonable? I, for one, cannot.

But onto the main part of this story. King George the Bush, subsequently to his decision, ordered 'X' number of captured persons transported to Guantanamo Bay Naval Station in Cuba. There these prisoners were greeted with a newly built, just for them (and others), internment camp. Complete with interrogation areas. Isn't that just wonderful? Not even.

Purportedly all of these prisoners are "enemy combatants." This status, if you will, was conferred upon the prisoners by Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz who created a military tribunal in 2004 — the Combatant Status Review Tribunal — to check the status of each Guantanamo detainee as an "enemy combatant."

Now allegedly all of the prisoners are either al Qaeda suspects or Taliban fighters. But truthfully, who knows?

What is the point of holding these people indefinitely? It was the U.S. who invaded Afghanistan. It was not the other way around. Therefore, what crime did the purported Taliban fighters commit? Is it a crime to fight in the defense of one's own country? I think not. Further, since Afghanistan has been, shall we say, domesticated why are these Taliban fighters still behind bars? Why have they not been released back to their own country? It is traditional to return prisoners of war, if that is what they are, to their homeland upon cessation of hostilities. Or have we forgotten that?

Pertaining to the al Qaeda suspects, are they actually and factually members of the gang? If so does the U.S. have evidence linking them to criminal acts in our country or our property such as embassies, military bases and ships? If such evidence exists why are these people not standing trial in a federal court for their crimes? Does the U.S. have evidence that the purported al Qaeda suspects have committed crimes in other countries? If so why haven't we turned the suspects and evidence over to the appropriate country for trial?

The humdinger though is just what the Sam Thump is an "enemy combatant?" Well, have I got real entertaining news for you. There is no such thing as an "enemy combatant." No definition whatsoever. Not even a legal one. The closest definition I could come up with is this (Blacks Law Dictionary):

"Enemy belligerent. Citizens who associate themselves with the military arm of an enemy government and enter the United States bent on hostile acts" (emphasis added).

Okay. Houston, we have a problem. From what I have read, with the exception of Jose Padilla, each and everyone of the prisoners at the Hotel Gitmo Gulag were captured overseas. Not, and let me repeat this, not in this country.

Additionally, if you do a search on the web for "enemy combatant" you will find the term means different things to different people. Including politicians. How quaint. The politicians can not even decide what two words mean — and get it right.

There is one word that is used quite frequently by King George the Bush, others within his court, courts themselves, and last but certainly not least, the Congress. That word is — war.

War

The "global war on terrorism." How many times have you heard, read or even spoken it? Quite a few times, I would be willing to bet. The only problem is that we, the United States, are not at war ... with any government or any country. There has been no, as in zero, Congressional declaration of war. Once again, against any government or any country.

Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, exclusive of powers of the Congress states (war powers clause):

"To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make rules concerning Captures on Land and Water[.]"

Congress has not issued a declaration of war. Congress has not issued rules pertaining to the capture of purported enemy personnel either. In short, the Congress of the United States has not done their Constitutionally mandated job.

Because Congress has not done their job the King is calling the shots anyway he so sees fit. That is morally reprehensible. It is reprehensible to the prisoners in the Hotel Gitmo Gulag. It is even more reprehensible and detrimental to our, as in We the People's, freedom and liberty.

Our members, employees is a better word for them, of Congress need to get off their collective fat butts and do their jobs that are required under our Constitution.

Being that there is no declaration of war, there cannot be put forth any rules pertaining to captured personnel. You can't put the cart before the mule. It just does not work. At the same time we are holding purported "enemy combatants" for approximately four years now. I suspect that the Hague's war crime tribunal office may have a problem with that. Indeed the war crime tribunal may have a real strong problem with our treatment or mistreatment of prisoners at the Gitmo Gulag.

As former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark said:

"It has never happened in history that a nation that has won a war has been held accountable for atrocities committed in preparing for and waging that war. We intend to make this one different. What took place was the use of technological material to destroy a defenseless country. From 125,000 to 300,000 people were killed. ... We recognize our role in history is to bring the transgressors to justice."

Clark was discussing Gulf (undeclared) War I.

And that is what I think has the Congress and the King scared out of their wits, though neither will ever admit it. How un-kingly don't you know. Basically everything the King and his court, along with the Congress has done, as it directly and indirectly relates to Afghanistan, Iraq and the prisoners that have been captured has either been unconstitutional or illegal. Possibly both. I am not just talking U.S. law either. International law and the Geneva Convention as well. Therefore, Congress is not going to do a blasted thing which might, somehow, endanger their position and their power and prestige. As for the King and his court ... who knows what the future will bring.

The Nuremberg Tribunal of November, 1945 still rings fresh in the minds of those in power in this country. The verdicts of the tribunal were announced October 1, 1946. Eleven former top Germans (Nazis) were sentenced to death by hanging. Including Joachim von Ribbentrop, the German foreign minister under Hitler and Field Marshall Wilhelm Keitel, supreme commander of the German army under Hitler.

If I was Colin Powell, former Secretary of State under King George the Bush, or General Myers, current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under the King, I would be checking my neck daily to see if it had been stretched. The same holds true for Rumsfeld and Cheney.

Congress had better do something, do it quick and do it Constitutionally and legally before the hangman comes-a-calling for them.

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