Germans plan to try Bush and Cheney for war crimes

The European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights, has begun the process of indicting members of the Bush Administration by filing criminal complaints against the architects of the admin’s torture program.

Calls for an immediate investigation by the German human rights group was started after outrage ensued on the case of a German citizen, Khalid El-Masri, who had been captured by CIA agents in 2004 because of a mistaken identity mix-up and was tortured at a secret prison in Afghanistan.

Wolfgang Kaleck, the general secretary of the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights, said: “By investigating members of the Bush administration, Germany can help to ensure that those responsible for abduction, abuse and illegal detention do not go unpunished.”

In an interview with “Democracy Now,” Michael Ratner, president emeritus of the Center for Constitutional Rights and chairman of the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights, said that he believes Cheney, among others, has no defense against accusations of torture and should be indicted:

“I strongly disagree that Bush, Cheney, et al., would have a defense,” he said. “This wasn’t like these memos just appeared independently from the Justice Department. These memos were facilitated by the very people — Cheney etc. — who we believe should be indicted. This was part of a conspiracy so they could get away with torture. But that’s not the subject here now.”

“Secondly, whatever we think of those memos,” he added, “they have no application in Europe. Europe doesn’t accept this “golden shield” of a legal defense. Either it’s torture or it’s not. Either you did it or you didn’t. And that’s one of the reasons, among others, why we’re going to Europe and why we went to Europe to bring these cases through the European Center.”

Ratner then hit the nail on the head regarding America’s dangerous exceptionalism path down the road:

“But, of course, you know, Cheney just showed us exactly why you have to — have to prosecute torture. Because if you don’t prosecute it, the next guy down the line is going to torture again. And that’s what Cheney said: ‘I would do it again.’”

From Dark Moon –

Coalition Works To Ban Sharia Law In American Courts

From Western Journalism: Just weeks after reports were confirmed regarding the establishment of an Islamic tribunal – the first in the nation – in Texas, a group of conservative activists announced the creation of an alliance existing solely to ban any form of foreign law from being observed in an American courtroom. Though the effort takes aim at any law practiced outside of the U.S. system, the obvious focus of the organization is apparent in its website name: Ban Sharia Law.

Radio host Don Smith is working with the group, which he told Western Journalism was started by Tim Selaty – the driving force behind Tea Party Community….

In addition to becoming a coalition partner and signing an online petition, supporters are encouraged to upload images of themselves holding signs that call for Sharia Law to be banned across the nation.

An interactive map provides a quick look at which states have proposed or passed anti-Sharia – or, more specifically, anti-foreign law – legislation. On its website, the group explains why the distinction is important.

“Although we believe Sharia law is currently posing the biggest threat to infiltrating our legal system,” the notice states, “most of the states who’ve successfully passed legislation didn’t actually mention Sharia law directly. This was intentional to squash the counter efforts by organizations like the Council on America-Islamic Relations…. The successful legislation was crafted towards the restriction of all foreign/international law.”

The site includes links to “graphic stories and disturbing videos” of Sharia law’s impact on society – both at home and abroad – and calls on anyone opposed to the implementation of this form of justice within U.S. borders to join the mission to prevent it.

WHAT IS IGNORANCE, TOLERANCE AND CORRUPTION BREEDING IN AMERICA?

“Instead of sitting down satisfied with the efforts we have already made, which is the wish of our enemies, the necessity of the times, more than ever, calls for our utmost circumspection, deliberation, fortitude, and perseverance.” –Samuel Adams

Friends, can you imagine our forefathers George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, etc. sitting across the table from the likes of Barack Hussein Obama, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi, John Kerry etc.? They would be speaking two different languages, would they not?

The forefathers advocated freedom by establishing the rights that God gave. On the other side of the table, we have the devil and his lawless minions distorting every word that our forefathers intended in an attempt to bring a people into bondage by enslaving them through slow and incremental encroachments.

Our forefathers would call for a reformation with a callback to the Christian religion and morality, which are the essential pillars of American society!

They would say that this is not the government that they established nor are the current representatives those who will keep a people free and prosperous. They would ask, “Why do the people of America suffer these abuses?”

While the founding documents are still with us, the authors are not. So, I will put myself in their place and ask the question, why is it that you suffer these abuses, and what it is that ignorance, tolerance and corruption breed?

First, the modern-day politician is the fruit of immoral, irresponsible and cowardly pulpits in American churches. If it is not the heretic Joel Osteen wholeheartedly affirming that Barack Hussein Obama is a Christian, then it’s Billy Graham’s grandson, Tullian Tchividjian, claiming that the pulpit is no place to speak on social issues. Incredible! (Luke 3:19)

Those are some inside the Church. But what about those outside the Church?
The fruit of the godless is even more rotten. Just this week, we heard from anti-christ columnist Valerie Taricowho wrote, “Why rape is so intrinsic to religion.” Tarico gratuitously and despicably asserts that God raped Mary. She then pays lip service to a number of mythological stories involving Zeus, Jupiter, Buddha and others before finally zeroing in on the true targets of her sniping: Christ, Mary and God the Father.

In December of last year, anti-theist Preston Smith gave an utterly moronic invocation at a city council meeting in Lake Worth, Florida. This was hands down one of the most twisted invocations I had ever heard or seen. With his incredibly effeminate voice, he offered lip service to Satan, Allah, Buddah, Zeus, and even Jesus, but he didn’t want to hear about damnation or judgment.

In direct contrast, our forefathers established the longest standing Constitution in modern history. They knew who their source was and where they needed to go to get the job done. So they went to their knees (Deuteronomy 8:18).

By Bradlee Dean – News With Views –

Saudi Arabian Beheadings, Politics & Sharia Law

By Angus McDowall – Reuters –

RIYADH – Immediately after his sword falls, the Saudi Arabian executioner steps backwards to avoid soiling his clothes with the blood of the condemned man, whose headless body can be seen slumping over backwards in the shaky online film.

After perfunctorily checking the white folds of his robe for flecks of red, the executioner wipes his blade with a tissue, which he drops onto the corpse and walks away.

A sudden surge in public executions in Saudi Arabia in the last two months has coincided with a U.S.-led bombing campaign against Islamic State. This has led to inevitable comparisons in Western media between Islamic State’s beheadings and those practiced in Saudi Arabia.

Defenders of the Saudi death penalty say beheadings, usually with a single sword stroke, are at least as humane as lethal injections in the United States. They deplore any comparison between the kingdom’s execution of convicted criminals and Islamic State’s extra-judicial killing of innocent hostages.

But rights activists say they are more concerned by the justice system behind the death penalty in the kingdom than by its particular method of execution. And critics of the Al Saud ruling family say the latest wave of executions may have a political message….

In the most extreme version of the Saudi death penalty, known by the Arabic word for “crucifixion” and reserved for crimes that outrage Saudi society, the corpse is publicly hanged in a harness from a metal gibbet as a warning to others.

An online film dated April 2012 on the LiveLeaks website shows a man being executed and then “crucified” in this manner, reportedly for robbing a house and killing its occupants. A group of five men suffered this fate in May last year in the southern province of Jizan for a series of robberies.

The reformist Jeddah lawyer, Alim, said he supported capital punishment in Saudi Arabia but that the legal system needed to be strengthened to ensure verdicts were just.

“I’m not someone who shies away from it. It’s part of Sharia. But it has to be handled with extreme sensitivity and care. At the moment it can be done on the basis of no other evidence if the accused confesses,” he said.

 
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Shielded from Justice: The High Cost of Living in a Police State

By John W. Whitehead –

“It’s been over five months since the night a SWAT team broke into the house in which we were staying…We were staying with relatives and my whole family was sleeping in one room. My husband and I, our three daughters and our baby (nicknamed “Baby Bou Bou”) in his crib. Dressed like soldiers, they broke down the door. The SWAT officers tossed a flashbang grenade into the room. It landed in Baby Bou Bou’s crib, blowing a hole in his face and chest that took months to heal and covering his entire body with scars.

“Doctors tell us that my son will have to have double reconstructive surgeries twice a year, every year for the next 20 years… [I]n five short months our family has taken on nearly $900,000 in medical bills, some of which have now gone into collections… After initially offering to cover the medical expenses, the county has since refused to cover any of our medical costs, all of which would never have happened if the SWAT team hadn’t broken into the home.”—Alecia Phonesavanh
Who pays the price for the police shootings that leave unarmed citizens dead or injured, for the SWAT team raids that leave doors splintered, homes trashed, pets murdered, and family members traumatized and injured, if not dead?

I’m not just talking about the price that must be paid in hard-earned dollars, whether by taxpayers or the victims, in attempting to restore what was vandalized and broken by police. It’s also the things that can’t be so easily calculated to a decimal point: the broken bones that will never quite heal right, the children’s nightmares at night, the uneasy sleep, the broken family heirlooms, the loss of faith in a system that was supposed to serve and protect you, the grief for loved ones whose lives were cut short.

Baby Bou Bou may have survived the misdirected SWAT team raid that left him with a hole in his face and extensive scars on his body, but he will be the one to pay the price for the rest of his life for the SWAT team’s blunder in launching a flashbang grenade into his crib. And even though the SWAT team was wrong about the person they were after, even though they failed to find any drugs in the home they’d raided, and even though they may have regretted the fact that Baby Bou Bou got hurt, it will still be the Phonesavanh family who will pay and pay and pay for the endless surgeries every year to reconstruct their son’s face as he grows from toddler to boy to teenager to man. Already, they have racked up more than $900,000 in medical bills. Incredibly, government officials refused to cover the family’s medical expenses.

That is just one family’s experience, the price they must pay for living in a police state. Tally their pain, their loss and their medical bills, and add it to that of the hundreds of other families in cities and towns across the nation who are similarly reeling from the blows inflicted by the government’s standing armies, and you will find yourself reeling. For many of these individuals, there can never be any amount of reparation sufficient to make up for the lives lost or shattered.

As for those who do get “paid back,” at least in monetary terms for their heartache and loss, it’s the taxpayers who are footing the bill to the tune of millions of dollars. Incredibly, these cases hardly impact the police department’s budget. As journalist Aviva Shen points out, “individual officers are rarely held accountable for their abuses, either by the police department or in court… Internally, police departments rarely investigate complaints of misconduct, let alone punish the accused officers. Because cities insulate police officers and departments from the financial consequences for their actions, police on the street have little incentive to avoid unnecessary force, and their departments may not feel the need to crack down on repeat offenders. And so the bill for taxpayers keeps growing.”

 
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