Re: If we do get Afghanistan, what shall we do with it?

From: Samantha Atkins (
Date: Tue Nov 27 2001 - 23:54:04 MST

Mike Lorrey wrote:
> Lee Daniel Crocker wrote:
> >
> > > Given the circumstances, sealing trials of terrorists until the conflict
> > > is concluded, or for simply some time after trial to greatly reduce the
> > > intelligence value of those public records, is a rational measure to
> > > take. It is a bit extreme, but we are not dealing with citizens here,
> > > nor are we dealing with anyone who would in any rational way accept OUR
> > > posession of similar civil rights.
> >
> > I'm not sure I see the vital national security concerns here. What
> > information might come out at trial that wouldn't make the public even
> > safer, like people's affiliations and histories, the security lapses
> > they took advantage of, etc.?
> In a war, ALL information about a) the enemy, and b) your own
> capabilities, operations, methods, and assets, is to be regarded as
> intelligence information. You may choose to release some of that
> information, but such decisions should be based entirely on the basis of
> its utility in the propaganda war versus the cost of letting the enemy
> know that information, as they would once it is publicly published.

Great. So we should all close down our websites because they
potentially give our "enemy" information? How about this list?
What of the public's right and need to know what the hell is
going on in a democracy? Mere collateral damage? Really, you
are taking your point to ridiculous lengths simply, imho, to not
have to admit any possible weakness in your position. This is a
pattern I've seen in many of your posts. It bothers me.

> If, for example, it is detailed at trial what methods were used to
> discover evidence about the planning, preparation, logistics, or
> operations of terrorist attacks, the public record of this evidence is
> then available for the al Qaeda or any other terrorist network to use to
> figure out ways to avoid evidentiary discovery in the future.

What about the right of the accused to know what they are
accused of and to examine and defend against the evidence and
testimony against them? Couldn't you say the same about any and
all criminal trials perhaps giving evidence to other criminals
or criminal organizations? And then where would our rights be?

Terrorism, and the fight against it, does not justify ripping
rights to shreds. We are not that scared. I am far more scared
of the loss of rights than of terrorist perhaps drawing some
benefit from the practice of actual justice rather than kangaroo
courts in this country.

- samantha

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