From: Mike Lorrey (
Date: Fri Oct 26 2001 - 07:18:26 MDT

Andrew Clough wrote:
> At 11:43 AM 10/25/2001 -0400, you wrote:
> >Samantha Atkins wrote:
> > >
> > > Mike Lorrey wrote:
> > > > Prisoners of War do not have 5th Amendment rights, since their actions
> > > > are not considered 'crimes' per se. Moreover, nobody has a 5th amendment
> > > > right in respect to knowledge of events yet to occur.
> > >
> > > Citizens and foreign nationals pulled in in an open sweep on no
> > > grounds or very weak grounds or their nationality or the
> > > ethnicity or their religion or age and gender or some
> > > combination ... are "prisoners of war"? Excuse me?
> >
> >In a war of insurgency, as this one is, there are no front lines to
> >'capture' prisoners on. This ain't no Stalag 13, no "Hogan's Heros",
> >lady. Wake up and smell the patchouli. The enemy has infiltrated our
> >homeland, they walk among us, dress like us, and try to act like good
> >little westernized muslims.
> >
> >
> >Since this is NOT a civilian criminal case. This is a war. They ain't
> >the same thing. Intelligence collection, especially in preventing more
> >war crimes, is of paramount importance.
> Though we disagree about quite a few things, I'm afraid I agree
> with Samantha here. Coercing information out of these prisoners would not
> be a good idea. First of all, If these people were prisoners of war they
> would be protected by the third Geneva convention. However, war has not
> been declared, and these were not troops "captured at the front lines,"
> "openly bearing weapons," or many of the other things that have to be true
> for somebody to be a POW. Where does that leave us? These people are
> technically civilians.

This is incorrect. The third Geneva Convention says that prisoners are
not to be tortured. Any other means is perfectly acceptable. Secondly,
war HAS been declared. It was declared by bin Laden 8 years ago.
Thirdly, a box cutter is a weapon in the current conflict, and those
four I specifically described all had box cutters or other weapons in
their posession. Troops do not have to be captured at the front lines to
be considered combatants either.

> Because Bin Laden's network operates on the "need to know"
> principle I doubt that any of people we are holding have information that
> could be used to prevent other terrorist attacks, at least in the short term.

No, it doesn't operate in that manner, it operates by a cell system,
which is different from 'need to know'. Anyone in a cell is aware of any
activities planned by that cell, as well as contacts and cutouts for
subsidiary and superior cells.

> Until these people are convicted they deserve the protection of US
> law, including the 5th amendment. After conviction criminals do have to
> give up some rights, and I could live with the use of truth serum so long
> as it wasn't "cruel and unusual punishment," just so long as we are dead
> sure that these people really were terrorists. The evidence against these
> people was pretty impressive, but the stuff that I know about was
> circumstantial, and so not enough to violate constitutional rights over.

Having a) a scheduled flight from Newark to California the day of the
attack (that was cancelled), and then heading to a Texas border town
with box cutters (the preferred weapon of the hijackers) and ten
thousand bucks in cash in their posession is far more than
circumstantial, especially when one of them was already on the FBI's
watch list. Then you've got Jechariah Moussawi, who 'only wanted to
learn to fly the plane in the air' and was also on the watch list.

If you mean that none of their activities, statements, or posessions
could be tied to an actual crime directly, that is obvious, because they
were never able to hijack a plane themselves, but it is rather obvious
that they were involved in the plot. Only a complete idiot would think

Finally, I highly doubt that you or Samantha has ANY experience in
dealing with wartime legal issues, dealing with Geneva Conventions, etc.

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