Political wind

Ground Zero Congressman Jerrold Nadler does not support our troops

Representative Jerrold Nadler’s Congressional district includes the World Trade Center’s Ground Zero from where more than 20,000 body parts of 2,751 heroes and victims of the September 11 attacks were removed. Yet in Avoiding ‘CSI Kandahar’ today, in the National Review Online, Andrew C. McCarthy writes:

‘We don’t have to pass anything,” smirked Jerrold Nadler to Newsweek. “Let the courts deal with it.”

The key House Democrat seems ever ready to lend a terrorist a helping hand. Just ask Susan Rosenberg, the Weather Underground bomber he helped convince Bill Clinton to commute her 60-year sentence. But now it’s our troops — who Democrats are forever saying they “support” — who need a helping hand. So here was Nadler, giving his usual thumbs-down to a Justice Department plea that Congress provide them, and the nation, with something other than the usual empty words.

The plea came on Monday. Attorney General Michael Mukasey gave a major speech at the American Enterprise Institute. It was a thoughtful request that our lawmakers do their job in the wake of last month’s catastrophic Supreme Court ruling that granted alien enemy combatants a constitutional right to habeas corpus (i.e., to civilian federal court review of the military decision to detain them).

Just to add emphasis, here are the first two paragraphs of Newsweek report:

Raising the prospect that Guantánamo Bay inmates might be unleashed onto the streets of American cities, Attorney General Michael Mukasey said Wednesday there is an “urgent” need for Congress to enact a new law governing how federal courts handle legal challenges from detainees at the U.S. prison camp in Cuba.

But Mukasey’s plea for quick passage of a significant new counterterrorism measure essentially fell on deaf ears—at least from the Democrats who control Congress. “Zero,” snapped one key lawmaker, Rep. Jerrold Nadler, when asked the likelihood that Congress will rush to pass the kind of law Mukasey and the Bush administration are seeking. “We don’t have to pass anything,” said Nadler, who chairs the House subcommittee that has primary jurisdiction over the issue, in a brief hallway interview with NEWSWEEK. “Let the courts deal with it.”

Okay. Let the courts deal with it but with one caveat: require every Member of Congress (except Nadler) who stands idly by as Districts Courts do their job creating statute to spend their recesses embedded with an infantry platoon currently deployed in Afghanistan. In addition, require that they be (if necessary) dragged kicking and screaming out on every combat patrol. As civilians, they should not be allowed to fight as that would make them unlawful combatants under the Geneva Conventions. Their job would be to provide legal advice to our troops as they try to fight, win, and survive under the new rules of engagement the federal judges are collectively coming up with while Congress stands mute.

Alternately, Congress can do its job by rapidly taking up Attorney General Michael Mukasey’s suggestion and before this coming September 11, pass stand-alone legislation.

As for Jerrold Nadler, for the duration of each Congressional recess, lock him in the same room as the thousands of still unidentified remains taken from Ground Zero and currently stored at the New York Medical Examiners office. Perhaps the chill will stir a memory or two.

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Andrew Sullivan hacks for Barack Obama and the ‘innocent’ jihadists at Guantanamo

In a post entitled ‘Why McCain Is Pushing Boumediene,’ Andrew Sullivan wrote in his blog tonight:

Defending suspected terrorists’ human rights isn’t popular [Sullivan citing WaPo’s poll that found “61 percent said non-citizens suspected of terrorism should not have these rights under the U.S. Constitution; 34 percent said they should.”] – especially when those suspects are foreign, have brown skin and speak a different language. But if most Americans fully understood how many innocents have been swept into the Bush gulag, they might be more circumspect.

Mr. Sullivan could have answered his own question and not left Americans to falsely believe that a large percentage of Guantanamo detainees were innocent.

Answer: 38 were innocent.

A mere thirty-eight out of the eight-hundred detainees taken to Guantanamo were later determined to be innocent and released.

An additional five-hundred who were known to be al Qaeda combatants (or members of other Islamic terrorist groups) have also been released. The nations that received the latter jihadists agreed to prosecute them or at least keep them from returning to the battlefield. Yet few were prosecuted (none successfully), several found ambulance-chasing lawyers in their home countries and are now suing, and nearly all returned home to a heroes welcome. Others conveniently “escaped” from their prisons such as in Yemen where several even managed to walk out the front door while the guards were busy elsewhere.

Thirty-seven — just one less than the number found to be innocent — went back to killing and trying to kill their fellow Muslims and coalition forces

Pentagon officials have confirmed that on April 29, 2008, former Guantanamo detainee Abdallah Salih al-Ajmi blew himself up in Mosul, Iraq, killing seven Iraqi police officers plus injuring twenty-nine more really innocent bystanders. Al-Ajmi was one of eight Kuwaitis from among what their propagandist lawyers and PR team dubbed the ‘Kuwaiti 12′ who were released in 2005. His family is now suing the Kuwaiti government over its issuing him a passport and allowing him to leave the country.

In addition, family members of the four remaining Kuwaitis at Guantanamo are asking that they not be released until their government can assure them they will keep their jihadist from blowing themselves up as well.

On May 9, 2008, the Wall Street Journal confirmed the numbers plus identified a couple more jihadists by name:

Ajmi’s story is hardly unique. Some 500 detainees have been released from Guantanamo over the years, mostly into foreign custody. Another 65 of the remaining 270 detainees are also slated to go. Yet of all the prisoners released, the Pentagon is confident that only 38 pose no security threat. So much for the notion that the Gitmo detainees consist mostly of wrong-time, wrong-place innocents caught up in an American maw.

The Defense Intelligence Agency reported on May 1 that at least 36 former Guantanamo inmates have “returned to the fight.” They include Maulavi Abdul Ghaffar, who was released after eight months in Gitmo and later became the Taliban’s regional commander in Uruzgan and Helmand provinces. He was killed by Afghan security forces in September 2004.

Another former detainee, Abdullah Mahsud, was released from Guantanamo in March 2004. He later kidnapped two Chinese engineers in Pakistan (one of whom was shot during a rescue operation). In July 2007 he blew himself up as Pakistani police sought to apprehend him.

So, why is Mr. Sullivan misleading Americans in a blog post entitled ‘Why McCain Is Pushing Boumediene‘ about the number of innocent detainees? Answer: Andrew Sullivan, like Barack Obama, is far more concerned about the civil rights and due process of the Islamic terrorists who would gleefully murder 300 million Americans in their quest for peace through world subjugation. The short answer: Andrew Sullivan is a political hack for Barack Obama.

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Oh, by the way, full disclosure about me.

Obama’s America Is September 10th America: Andrew McCarthy

Barack Obama is obviously running to become America’s Lawyer-in-Chief.

Former federal prosecutor Andrew C. McCarthy says Senator John McCain should ask Senator Barack Obama this question everyday: How is that strategy of prosecuting him [bin Laden] in the criminal-justice system working out? He points out this naive assertion yesterday by Mr. Obama:

What we know is that, in previous terrorist attacks — for example, the first attack against the World Trade Center, we were able to arrest those responsible, put them on trial. They are currently in U.S. prisons, incapacitated.

And the fact that the administration has not tried to do that has created a situation where not only have we never actually put many of these folks on trial, but we have destroyed our credibility when it comes to rule of law all around the world, and given a huge boost to terrorist recruitment in countries that say, “Look, this is how the United States treats Muslims.”

So that, I think, is an example of something that was unnecessary. We could have done the exact same thing, but done it in a way that was consistent with our laws.

Mr. Obama has no experience as a prosecutor and only briefly taught Constitutional law. Compare that to Mr. McCarthy’s considerable experience as a federal prosecutor and the lead prosecutor of those who conducted the first attack upon the World Trade Center. Here is, in part, the latter’s response:

The fact is that we used the criminal justice system as our principal enforcement approach, the approach Obama intends to reinstate, for eight years — from the bombing of the World Trade Center until the shocking destruction of that complex on 9/11. During that timeframe, while the enemy was growing stronger and attacking more audaciously, we managed to prosecute successfully less than three dozen terrorists (29 to be precise). And with a handful of exceptions, they were the lowest ranking of players.

I’ll add that 9/11 and all the other successful attacks inside and outside our nation’s borders that previous law enforcement counter-terrorism efforts failed to prevent are what gave a huge boost to Islamic terrorist recruitment. Killing every Islamic terrorist that we identify or (if we unfortunately capture them alive) locking them in a cell until they are dead or too feeble-minded to contribute to the jihad would at least lower their reenlistment rates substantially; feeding detainees a couple times each day is, in my mind, all the process they are due.

Tell Pelosi to schedule Hubbard Act vote: (202) 225-4965

Nathan, Jared, and Jason Hubbard.

Inga Barks did a great job filling in for syndicated talk-radio host Mark Levin tonight.

During the last 1/2 hour of the show, she spoke with sole surviving son Army Specialist Jason Hubbard and Congressman Devin Nunes about this:

Forced to leave the combat zone after his two brothers died in the Iraq war, Army Spc. Jason Hubbard faced another battle once he returned home: The military cut off his family’s health care, stopped his G.I. educational subsidies and wanted him to repay his sign-up bonus. It wasn’t until Hubbard petitioned his local Congressman that he was able to restore some of his benefits. Now that Congressman, Rep. Devin Nunes, plans to join three other lawmakers in introducing a bill that would ensure basic benefits to all soldiers who are discharged under the sole survivor policy. The rule is a holdover from World War II meant to protect the rights of service people who have lost a family member to war. “I felt as if in some ways I was being punished for leaving even though it was under these difficult circumstances,” Hubbard told The Associated Press. “The situation that happened to me is not a one-time thing. It’s going to happen to other people, and to have a law in place is going to ease their tragedy in some way.”

Jason Hubbard was 500 meters away in another helicopter when his brother Nathan’s helicopter crashed. The audio of Inga Barks’ interview of Jason and Congressman Nunes is a must listen:

This Memorial Day weekend, please call House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office at (202) 225-4965, and leave her a polite message asking her to schedule a vote on the Hubbard Act. (The bill has 303 sponsors in the House) This is a wrong that must be righted now.

Note: I called Speaker Pelosi’s office and the voice mailbox was full. Please try again tomorrow or put this on your calendars for Tuesday morning to do.

Update: (bumped to the top from last night) I cross-posted this on Free Republic and would like to respond to a couple of comments. Here first are their comments:

jstaff wrote:

“Something about this seems to be a bit off track. I spent 22 yrs in the military and have first hand experience with the “Sole Surviving Son or Daughter” rules. Unless things have changed since Dessert Storm this story needs checking into for these reasons: 1) The rule does/did not prohibit the sole survivor from serving in a combat zone, but allowed him/her to to be exempted, only IF an exemption was requested. 2) The rule does/did not require that the survivor be released from active duty, merely reassigned to duties outside the combat zone. and 3) If he requested to be discharged from active duty he would have been briefed about the potential loss of benefits, and would have been informed that failure to complete his reenlistment contract could result in forfeiture of part of any bonus.

“Hopefully I have my panties all wadded up for nothing and I have just misunderstood the details of the situation.”

Libery 2007 responded to jstaff:

“you are right, what you have stated is true. I suspect they offered him a discharge, if thats the case, its breach of contract you have to pay back your bonus.”

Here now is my reply (also posted there):

I spent 20 years in the military but what you or I did is not the point. Jason Hubbard joined to pick up his brother Jared’s rifle, spent 13 months as an infantry scout in Iraq, and served with honor. I contend that is should not matter if he “merely” was a supply clerk at some repo-depot in the states. Supply clerks deploy (and a good many have), fought, sacrificed, and died in this and all our wars.

Jason paid into the GI bill and the Hubbard family paid dearly. Jason can no longer deploy, lead or fight. The honorable discharge he elected to take is doubly so; he got “the hell out of the way” and made way for a warrior.

I think we owe the Jasons — the sole survivors of war — more than words of gratitude; we owe those who gave so much the ‘Hubbard Act.’ It is the least we can and should do.

Follow the Dem Congress trial lawyer money trail: John Boehner

House Minority Leader John Boehner in the Washington Examiner today:

The trial lawyer industry is, of course, a major source of campaign cash for the Democratic majority, which has happily accommodated the industry’s agenda. At the behest of the trial lawyer lobby, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has stonewalled a bipartisan national security bill needed to allow U.S. intelligence personnel to listen in on conversations involving al Qaeda terrorist operatives.

The bill passed the Senate with a lopsided bipartisan vote and appeared destined for the president’s desk. But then the trial lawyer industry — which opposes the bipartisan bill because it prevents patriotic companies from being sued after cooperating with the government’s terrorist surveillance efforts — called in its chits. House Democratic leaders have subsequently refused to allow the bipartisan bill to see the light of day.

The relationship manifested itself again this week when housing legislation was considered by Congress. Tucked into the housing bill was a $35 million taxpayer-funded slush fund for trial lawyers seeking to cash in on the housing downturn. The bill, if enacted into law, would “require that [$35] million … be used for grants to state and local legal organizations with experience in foreclosure law.” A bill portrayed as an effort to help struggling homeowners was used to line the pockets of the Democratic majority’s trial lawyer allies, courtesy of American taxpayers and homeowners truly in need of help.