I wrote last week of the Bush administration’s attempts to further manipulate and even quash the Jose Padilla case to ensure that he would not receive a fair trial by any historic definition of democratic justice.
From a realistic point of view this seemed to be a case of BushCo toying with the judiciary to emphasize its unhindered/unchecked command, most especially in cases of unlawful mistakes.
Michael Luttig, who was shortlisted as Justice Sandra Day O’Connor’s replacement in the Supreme Court, heading a uninamous decision in 4th circuit appeals court, wrote a “scathing rebuke of the government’s manipulation of the court system suggesting that the administration might have unjustifiably held Padilla as an enemy combatant.” He previously awarded the president the authority to hold enemy combatants, as Padilla was originally held and suspected, without charge (whilst still under GW’s spell pre-Alito)?
The government’s careless and downright wrong handling of the Padilla case is a textbook example of the dictatorial tendencies of our lawless commandantes.
Seattle Times takes these words right out of my mouth:
Let’s not forget the whole thing. This question of whether any president can declare a citizen an unlawful combatant and imprison him on a military base will come up again. It will have to be decided. Let’s decide it now.
Dante Chinni is remarkably clear in his column in the Christian Science Monitor: “a lot of people in Congress and the courts aren’t exactly celebrating the White House’s prosecution of the “war on terror.”
The Trib’s Steve Chapman, who I often have trouble reading, is most eloquent in his analysis entitled: