From: Doug Jones (
Date: Sun Oct 28 2001 - 21:32:26 MST wrote:
> [Mike Lorrey wrote:]
> >
> > 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.
> So, someone under CIA surveillance comes up to you in an airport and
> asks the time. The operative, because of your now known contact with a
> "suspected" terrorist notes, "Round him up for questioning!" and when
> you say you don't know anything it's OK to pull out all the stops to get
> you to confess to your "knowledge"? I'm not sure I like the idea of
> sacrificing individuals on the alter of paranoia.

Strawman. Limited resources could not be wasted on every potential
contact, and stealth would also argue against overt action of that sort,
lest the object of surveillance notice that everyone he talks to gets
yanked into the shadows like a bad episode of "Get Smart". On the other
hand, I *would* like to see a clear devlaration of war, so that the
civil liberity infringements would be clearly identified and have a
reasonble prospect of coming to an end. This damn vague executive
branch not-quite-war without a congressional declaration is a step down
a slippery slope. War powers should not be granted so lightly.

On the gripping hand, noncitizens do not have the full benefits of being
one of "the people" under constitutional protections. It has long been
SOP to indefinately detain foreign nationals without habeas corpus; the
Mariel Boatlift cuban prison sweepings that Castro cleverly shuffled in
are a good example- many of them are *still* in detention. Some,
perhaps many, of these people are innocent victims of a kafkaesque
miscarriage of justice (Tam Minh Tran is a prime example, see Is that
an argument against using INS to detain terrorism suspects for a
moderate time? No, the issues are separate; the problems with the
IIRIRA can be, and eventually will, be corrected.

I guess the point I'm rambling toward is that, yes, injustices *will*
occur in trying to defend against this concerted attack on freedom- but
these will not destroy it.

Doug Jones, Rocket Plumber
XCOR Aerospace

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