“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Friday, June 13, 2008

Five Vile Bastards in Black Robes...

The head of the New York-based Centre for Constitutional Rights, which represents dozens of prisoners at Guantanamo, welcomed the ruling.

“The Supreme Court has finally brought an end to one of our nation's most egregious injustices," its executive director, Vincent Warren, said. “By granting the writ of habeas corpus, the Supreme Court recognises a rule of law established hundreds of years ago and essential to American jurisprudence since our nation's founding."

"Today's Supreme Court decision ensures that we can protect our nation and bring terrorists to justice, while also protecting our core values . . ." said Obama.

The court's liberal justices were in the majority, with Justice Anthony Kennedy pivotal. Writing for the court, he said: "The laws and Constitution are designed to survive, and remain in force, in extraordinary times."

"This is an important step toward re-establishing our credibility as a nation committed to the rule of law, and rejecting a false choice between fighting terrorism and respecting habeas corpus." said Obama.


  1. "The Nation will live to regret what the Court had done today," Justice Antonin Scalia writes at the end of his dissent in Boumediene v. Bush, the case in which a bare majority of the Supreme Court, for the first time ever, extended rights under the U.S. constitution to enemy combatants who have never set foot on U.S. soil.

    It's possible that Scalia is wrong when he predicts more Americans will die as a result of this ruling. It may be that al Qaeda is a weak enough enemy that America can vanquish it even with the Supreme Court tying one hand behind our back. Anyway, keeping future detainees away from Guantanamo should prevent them from coming within the reach of the justices' pettifogging.

    Perhaps decades from now we will learn that detainees ended up being abused in some far-off place because the government closed Guantanamo in response to judicial meddling. Even those who support what the court did today may live to regret it.

    It seems the case applies only to Guantanamo, for now.

    Adios, Guantanamo

  2. “To hold that the political branches may switch the Constitution on or off at will would lead to a regime in which they, not this court, say ‘what the law is,’ ” Justice Kennedy wrote, citing language in the 1803 ruling in Marbury v. Madison, in which the Supreme Court articulated its power to review acts of Congress.

    hehehe--back to Marbury v. Madison, when the court first usurped powers, according to Thomas Jefferson.

  3. And that is precisely the question in these cases: whether the Constitution confers habeas jurisdiction on federal courts to decide petitioners’ claims. It is both irrational and arrogant to say that the answer must be yes, because otherwise we would not be supreme.
    But so long as there are some places to which habeas does not run—so long as the Court’s new “functional” testwill not be satisfied in every case—then there will be circumstances
    in which “it would be possible for the politicalbranches to govern without legal constraint.” Or, to put itmore impartially, areas in which the legal determinations of the other branches will be (shudder!) supreme. In other words, judicial supremacy is not really assured by the constitutional rule that the Court creates. The gap between
    rationale and rule leads me to conclude that the Court’s ultimate, unexpressed goal is to preserve the power to review the confinement of enemy prisoners heldby the Executive anywhere in the world. The “functional” test usefully evades the precedential landmine of Eisentrager
    but is so inherently subjective that it clears a wide path for the Court to traverse in the years to come

    from Scalia's Dissent

    Full Opinion

    Power hungry bastards. Congress had passed the bill.

  4. Better to just shoot them in the field and let the Lord sort it out. Scalia mentions many cases of people held at Guantanamo who the military let go that ended up back on the battlefield, or in the cities, killing people. What do you do then, if you've got, say, 10,000 prisoners?

  5. The problem is the time frame.

    Seven years of just about anything (slavery, drought, pestilence, debt) was long enough Biblically.

    With each passing year, it became apparent that the sanctions against Saddam weren't going to hold. It was an unresolved, interminable dispute that was bound to end wrong.

    Same with holding men in prison. You can get away with it for awhile but if you go beyond the "natural, historical timeframes" you're asking for trouble.

    Time allows the opposition to consolidate, agitate, plot,scheme and act. Given enough time, they find and exploit your weaknesses.

  6. but the jumpers from the buildings, that are yet to be rebuilt, are dead for seven years and by all indications will remain so for some time to come. Moral certitude has its merits. They should have been dead years ago.

  7. Granted, the non-war's gone on too long, but these MF'rs would figure out a way to get us killed in any case, as Scalia points out.

    Even well-run counterinsurgencies take many years, but the real point is these bastards turn the vaunted Stare Decisis  on it's ear wrt even previous rulings by this court, not to mention the entire history of this country at war.

    Joel Kaplan, Jon Kyl, and James Lileks.

    Thursday June 12, 2008
    Joel Kaplan, Jon Kyl, James Lileks With Hugh Hewitt

    Hewitt: Hour 1 -

    Hugh reacts very strongly to the horrible 5-4 decision by the Supreme Court to grant Constitutional rights to terrorists at Guantanamo Bay, discussing it with Assistant to the President Joel Kaplan, with Arizona Senator Jon Kyl, and with Star Tribune columnist James Lileks.
    Nobody knows yet if it only applies to Gitmo:
    A circus of additional cases in court will decide that.

    This was the THIRD try, with the Black robed bastards saying try 2 was not good enough, so a BIPARTISAN group in Congress and the Admin tried again, together, and were overruled, along with common sense by these adolescent revolutionary seekers of DC adulation.

    Separation of powers, my ass!

  8. OT--All this salmonella poisoning is coming from tomatoes grown and irrigated with sewage water. Most of the tomatoes sold in the US come from Mexico, especially in the cold months. Remembewr that next time you're at Wal-Mart. Grow your own, or live in Florida.

  9. We have bull semen for sale

    Maybe squirt some of that up Ginsburg, might produce something useful from the sterile line, like Milk, fer instance.
    Course the old hag is too old to do anything beyond play chess w/Scalia and fuck the country.
    At least she's fuckin somethin.

  10. ...or Hawaii, al-Bob:
    Them Florida Tomaters are grown by illegal slaves, so sooner or later a batch will arrive that's been squatted upon.

  11. Judge Kennedy, a Reagan appointee and Judge Souter, appointed by Bush the elder.

    Good, conservative Judges, in their day.

    Those pesky criminals, picked up in Afghanistan, in the Long War, must be granted the Geneva Accord privileges accorded POWs. Or they must be charged and tried as criminals.

    The Judges allowing the defendents access to an appeals process, if convicted. As I've heard some talkong heads explain it.

  12. Maliki says talks on Iraq-US pact deadlocked

    AMMAN (AFP) — Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki said on Friday that negotiations with the United States on a long-term security pact were deadlocked because of concern the deal infringes Iraqi sovereignty.

    "We have reached an impasse, because when we opened these negotiations we did not realise that the US demands would so deeply affect Iraqi sovereignty and this is something we can never accept," he told Jordanian newspaper editors, according to a journalist present at the meeting.

    "We cannot allow US forces to have the right to jail Iraqis or assume, alone, the responsibility of fighting against terrorism," Maliki said on the final day of a two-day visit to Amman.

  13. Maliki insisted: "All the Iraqi people agree that any agreement that undermines Iraqi sovereignty should not be signed.

    "We realised that our demands are rejected by the American side and that their demands are rejected by the Iraqi side."

  14. Kennedy and Souter, indicitive of the type Judges that McCain would be able to get confirmed.

    Advise and Consent

    Get Confirmed

    The only Standard that will matter to the Mac.

  15. It often seems as though Liberals, Progressives or whatever they call themselves these days allow feelings of self loathing and guilt to affect their judgment. Why is this the case? Are they incapable of rational moral reasoning?

  16. gag, nah I didnt truly ask those for effect...If there is an answer I would really like to have a peek at it.
    I mean are they really actually so self centered that every freaking decision is weighed against the question of not "Is this good or right?" but "how is this going to make ME feel?"
    Consider that this is truth for them is making ME feel like I need a drink. Where did the bartender run off to? Whit, Deuce, permission to go behind the bar for self service? Oh BTW, I will be in possession of a bottle of Flor de cana this afternoon. I'll report my observations and or tasting notes tomorrow. I will attempt to purge my mind of this unwelcome desire to comprehend progressive thought processes or lack thereof before I put the fine bottleinfrontome.

  17. Bobal: ...the Supreme Court, for the first time ever, extended rights under the U.S. constitution to enemy combatants who have never set foot on U.S. soil.

    If Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, is not U.S. soil, then it must be Cuban soil. It can't be in a legal limbo. That's what SCOTUS decided. And you should know that some rights in the Constitution are extended to any person on U.S. soil, even non-citizens.

  18. "..Better to just shoot them in the field and let the Lord sort it out.."

    I think so too.

  19. Rachmaninov had big hands. :)

  20. lili,
    it looks like you are exercising your rights to bare arms....

  21. Yeah, Bob; it looks like the Pubs are "well, and truly" screwed.

    In all honesty, I just don't know what in the hell to do.

    Maybe I'll vote for the Pub Senator, and Congressman, and leave the top line blank. (But, I'll probably vote for the "ObaMessiah."

  22. How can it be, that the Naval Base and hospital in the Canal Zone, in Panama, were considered part of the natural US, but the Naval Base and hospial at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, somehow are not?

  23. Krauthammer:

    "Obama promises that upon his inauguration, he will order the Joint Chiefs to bring him a plan for withdrawal from Iraq within 16 months. McCain says that upon his inauguration, he'll ask the Joint Chiefs for a plan for continued and ultimate success.

    "The choice could not be more clearly drawn. The Democrats' one objective in Iraq is withdrawal. McCain's one objective is victory."

    (As I've said before.)

    In truth, this process of (let's call it) consultation begins well before inauguration, or even election. And in truth, the Chiefs have their say. Because the Chiefs have their own understanding of what is, what isn't, what needs to be, what ought not be - apart from any mere mortal's platform or promises. And this is no mystery to either candidate. Maybe it is to Dr. Krauthammer, but I doubt it.

    One practical outcome of this process is that there is a great deal of carry-over in the transition year, and change of the sort that frightens the cattle (if such be intended) is delayed. Sometimes forestalled altogether.

    It's the kind of deal that gives Pat Lang fits. Maybe in another election year it would me, too. But not now.

  24. I quess you could look at it this way, Rufus. If Obama turns out to actually be the messiah, you'll end up among the angels.

  25. It might be your only chance.

  26. Good'un, Bob; ya caught me wrong-footed on that one. :)

  27. Scalia is a dolt!

    2164th, what's with all the fear mongering and 911 bullshit? I thought you detested the Soviet Union and that style of tyranny? You know, where folk get locked up with no recourse? Here you are invoking 911 and terrorism and railing about the SCOTUS saying, 'well, maybe we should actually have a process where we determine their guilt or innocence and not just let some shadowy dude in the Military or Whitehouse arbitrarily make the decision'.

    Bottom line, you guys and Scalia are, in essence, saying 'the ends justify the means' without even having and end to justify the means. You are saying, 'if we don't lock those fuckers up they'll destroy our society' yet you don't even know who those fuckers are, what they've done, or what they might do, you just ASSume they will. It was a good decision by the SCOTUS, sad it wasn't unanimous.

  28. Bobal, you are so swift to condemn Canada for not protecting free speech (even if it is wrong, hateful and bigoted - like KILL ALL JEWS) yet you cringe in fear when the SCOTUS protects a persons right to not be unfairly locked up by the US government. What gives?

    The rule of law prevails
    From Friday's Globe and Mail

    June 13, 2008 at 7:55 AM EDT

    The United States' prison for suspected terrorists at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, has been fatally undermined. Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the president and Congress cannot deny a prisoner at Guantanamo the right to cry out to an independent judge in civilian courts that he is being wrongly detained. With that, it is time for President George W. Bush to ensure that the walls of Guantanamo come tumbling down.

    This is a constitutional ruling for the ages. The issue was whether the Constitution could be switched on and off at will, as Justice Anthony Kennedy, writing for the 5-4 majority, put it. Dissenting, Justice Antonin Scalia warned that Americans would die as a result of the ruling. But Justice Kennedy wisely said security exists "in fidelity to freedom's first principles."

    Detainee hearings at Guantanamo have been rigged by the state. The men who brought yesterday's case are Bosnians who were suspected of plotting to bomb the U.S. embassy in Sarajevo; Bosnian police turned them over six years ago to U.S. authorities. When a U.S. military tribunal declared them enemy combatants, they had no lawyers to represent them; they were not allowed to know the most important allegations against them; they had limited means to find or present evidence in their defence; and there were no limits on the state's use of hearsay, making it impossible for them to challenge witnesses. And because the Supreme Court had ruled it acceptable to hold prisoners for the duration of a war - and the war on terror could last a generation or more - these men faced a virtual life sentence.

    No wonder a British jurist called Guantanamo Bay a legal black hole. And no wonder all Western countries, except Canada, insisted that the U.S. send their nationals home. Only Canada has allowed its citizen, Omar Khadr, arrested at 15 in Afghanistan (he'll be 22 in September) to disappear into that black hole. Let the process work, the Harper government says. But the very foundation of the process, as the U.S. Supreme Court says, is unlawful.
    Whatever value Guantanamo Bay had in extracting intelligence from its prisoners has surely been exhausted by now, for almost all the detainees.

    Serious terrorist suspects should receive fair hearings in U.S. civilian courts. Mr. Khadr should be handed to Canadian authorities, who can decide, in accordance with Canadian and international law, how to deal with him.

    Guantanamo is a blight on a proud democracy. The Supreme Court's stirring decision is a triumphant moment for the rule of law in the United States.

  29. The President is not a shadowy dude.

  30. No 911 wasn't bullshit, nor are terrorists bulsshit, but that is no reason to lock folk up arbitrarily.

  31. And the President isn't a king or the lord. Do you think the Great Dubya has wonderful insight into what these folks have done and he alone should sit in judgement of them?

  32. Sure, you assume everyone in Gitmo is a terrorist. How do you know?

  33. Guantanamo was an idiotic idea. The captives should have been few and their capture short. They should have remained in Afghan soil.

  34. Ash, that is the idea in war, you assume your enemy means you harm.

  35. So? they didn't. They sit in Guantanamo. The issue before SCOTUS seems to have been over Bosnians.

  36. And that's the problem with this so called War on Terror, it's not a traditional war. If they treated the prisoners like POW's then there wouldn't have been a problem. The problem is that they've invoked the war notion saying we can hold them without trial but then they deny them the same protections war affords them by saying they are unlawful combatants. It's absurd and they've been called out on the aburdities.

  37. Ash, you live in a land, far removed from the world as it is. Enjoy it. Hope and pray that when you need a few good men, they are available.

  38. 2164th, it has nothing to do with a few good men but rather with the US government forcibly taking people to Cuba and confining them indefinitely with no recourse - no chance to challenge the detention - nothing!

  39. ...and Duece maybe you would appreciate the protections offered by the US constitution, specifically Habeus Corpus, if you end up in a dark dank central american prison - you grubby foreign captilast swine you ;)

  40. The word "people" denotes normalcy and fraternity.
    Is that what you think they are, petty criminals, jay-walkers perhaps, run of the mill thugs, good boys gone bad?

  41. Would you like to see Nick Berg beheaded? I can post the video for you. You can hear him scream and the life gurgle out of him from his own blood as one of these potential Guantanamo detainee saws off his head, and holds it up for the camera. A head still with life but the last of the blood draining to the floor.

  42. Mr. Maliki said there were four areas in which proposed versions of the agreement failed to give sufficient deference to Iraqi sovereignty.

    “Iraq rejects Washington’s insistence on granting their forces immunity from Iraqi laws and courts,” he said. “We reject Washington’s demand to have a free hand in undertaking military operations without cooperation with the Iraqi government.”

    He added: “We cannot give permission to the American forces independent right to arrest Iraqis or execute operations against terrorism. We cannot allow them to use the Iraqi skies and waters at all times.”

    Those statements are great reason to pack up and go. American Military personnel subject to Iraqi law? My, my. I wonder how the Iraqis view Habeus Corpus?

  43. There are truly evil people in the world Duece, there are. Is there any reason to think those locked up in Guantanamo Bay are these evildoers other then the fact that they are locked up there? If so, lets see the beef. The Son of Sam was one heck of an evil guy, so was Timothy McVeigh, does that mean we can lock you up and give you no choice to challenge the detention?

  44. The left makes it sound as though prisoners held in Guantanamo Bay have no rights whatsoever and been left to anguish in damp, dark cells.

    That could not be farther from the truth as I have heard their lying attorneys for years now. They have been well represented and the judicial proceedings accorded them are the most generous and liberal ever accorded anyone detained in a US involved war.

    I do make a distinction between enemy combatants captured on the battlefield and suspected terrorists snatched elsewhere. If they weren't caught by our military on a battlefield, their cases are criminal cases, otherwise, they're enemy combatants who by the way were not protected by the Geneva Convention.

    The bulk of these lying bastards detainees were picked up in Afghanistan in 2001. All have had the opportunity to have their day in court. They simply rather take their chances in US civil courts. The five vile ones have obliged.

    But all that aside, we don't yet know what this ruling fully means and I doubt the "black-robed five" do either.

  45. Recall, Ash, that the Congress passed a bill, Bush was following it.

    Son of Sam and McVeigh were US citizens, in the US.

    You're all steamed up when the court ruled your way.

    And that's the problem with this so called War on Terror, it's not a traditional war

    There lies part of the problem of what to do with these good folks.

  46. How can it be, that the Naval Base and hospital in the Canal Zone, in Panama, were considered part of the natural US, but the Naval Base and hospial at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, somehow are not?

    Good Question. Maybe we own the land in Panama. I don't know.

  47. How do we now take these detainees and run them through a civil court process?

    Do we now apply standard rules of evidence to proceedings for prisoners who were captured in the heat of battle?

    Throughout the history of this country military tribunals have been the accepted venue. After WWII when US civil attorneys argued cases in Nuremberg, I don't believe there was any call for the cases to be taken to civil courts.

  48. Sure, you assume everyone in Gitmo is a terrorist. How do you know?

    Because they were shooting at you? Because they were caught with bombs, bullets, rifles?

    I admit it's a murky business. But let's say we captured Bin Laden. What then? He's not acting under the orders of a government. He isn't a prisoner of war, in that sense. He should be granted the protections of civil law? What would you do with Bin Laden, Ash, if we caught him alive?

    My answer is a military tribunal.

  49. whit said:
    "If they weren't caught by our military on a battlefield, their cases are criminal cases, otherwise, they're enemy combatants who by the way were not protected by the Geneva Convention."

    Let me revise and extend that remark. I do not believe Kalid Sheik Mohammed or anyone like him needs to be accorded the full protection of the US Constitution.

  50. This is pretty much the way I see it too--

    Opposing view: An inexplicable power grab
    Ruling puts lives at risk, usurps the role of Congress and the president.

    By Richard Samp

    Throughout our nation's history, the courts have usually deferred to our elected branches of government — Congress and the president — on foreign affairs and national security issues. And with good reason. The courts simply lack the expertise and resources to justify second-guessing military experts on such issues.

    In Thursday's sharply divided 5-to-4 decision, the Supreme Court decided to abandon that long history of deference. It decreed that henceforth, it will be the job of federal courts to decide on their own whether aliens captured on foreign battlefields are really "enemy combatants."

    The court said the doctrine that it was upholding is enshrined in the Constitution, even though it candidly acknowledged that it could not cite a single prior case in which an American or English court had exercised such power in a case involving aliens held overseas.

    The court's unprecedented power grab is inexplicable given the absence of substantial evidence that innocent people are being detained. Every Guantanamo Bay detainee has been afforded a hearing in front of a Combatant Status Review Tribunal; those still being held were all determined to be enemy combatants. The basic fairness of the hearings is readily apparent. Many resulted in detainees being released.

    The procedure is the one set up by Congress and the president; they determined that the process achieved the proper balance between protecting the rights of the innocent and ensuring that our ability to wage war is not impaired.

    Congress even provided for federal court review of tribunals' findings. None of that was sufficient for the Supreme Court, which insisted — in the face of contrary judicial precedent — that federal courts can do a better job.

    Let's hope the court is right; some of our lives might depend on it. Just how high the stakes are was spelled out by the four dissenting justices: At least 30 former Guantanamo detainees later returned to the battlefield to resume their war against the United States. Judges should keep the potentially lethal consequences in mind before they contemplate overruling military experts and ordering additional releases.

    Richard Samp is chief counsel of the Washington Legal Foundation, a public interest law firm that filed a Supreme Court brief supporting the government's position.

  51. Frankly, I wish it had been Chris Mathews, rather than Russert.

  52. How can it be, that the Naval Base and hospital in the Canal Zone, in Panama, were considered part of the natural US, but the Naval Base and hospial at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, somehow are not?

    How can it be that for the 232 years of this country's existence, enemies were enemies and had no rights under our constitution, including the natives, but now five liberal pricks can change that based on their political views which they mask with legal BS in their opinion. Why is it only Federal law that gets extended? What if it was a National Guard unit that took them prisoner? Would that unit's home state not have an equally valid claim to extend the scope of its court's jurisdiction? Given this ruling, how can there be a UMCJ? Do soldiers not have the same rights as enemy combatants? I don't know the legal answers to any of these questions, but I do have a common sense view. Regardless, the sheer arrogance and power grabbing of the majority opinion is astounding and revolting.

  53. Given this ruling, how can there be a UMCJ? Do soldiers not have the same rights as enemy combatants?

    That is an excellent question. Cigar and the drink of his choice to j willie.

    McCain is criticizing the decision too, big time.

  54. I am getting closer and closer to unplugging from the "grid" and dropping out altogether. I am about ready to "sell out, cash out and get out."

    No cable, no cell phones, no internet, no politics. No bullshit.

  55. We can open a elephant bar in Costa Rica.

  56. an..... I already opened cocktail hour...sorry.

  57. We'll have arab oil money defending these g-damned jihadis. That's my prediction.

  58. "Frankly, I wish it had been Chris Mathews, rather than Russert."
    I was in the shower and mistakenly thought it was Chris, immediately started coming up w/one liners like:

    "Now we'll have to vote for Obama so Chris can get that tingle in purgatory."
    Worse was when he had an on-air orgasm watching Bubba get out of the hospital.

  59. This comment has been removed by the author.

  60. Bobal wrote:

    "He should be granted the protections of civil law? What would you do with Bin Laden, Ash, if we caught him alive?"

    Why prosecute him of course. Just because he is able to challenge his accusers doesn't mean he will be exonerated of his crimes. Bobal, what do you say to a poor kid mistakenly caught up in the net and sent to Gitmo - "Sucks to be you dude"?

  61. Freakin "poor kid caught up in the net"? KMA. Uh yeah, I'm just sure little Mohammed was out rabbit hunting with his AK and was "in the wrong place at the wrong time" when those evil US soldiers rounded him up and sent him to Guantanamo.

    We don't put cops out on the battlefield dude. Grunts aren't out there collecting evidence to present to a court where 99.99% of the jury has never been on a battlefield.

    We're screwed. I honestly don't think this country can fight a war anymore. And half the people in this country aren't worth for fighting for anyway.

    I'm with Whit. I'm on the verge of just tuning out. Just can't stand watching a nation commit suicide.

  62. lugh,

    Where is the intel coming from on these folks captured? Any idea? Naw, it's classified. A bit a waterboarding, a few informants snitching on some enemies, a kid picked up at the scene (Omar Kadr). Are you saying just toss them down the black hole, or maybe, just maybe, give them a chance to challenge their accusers? Maybe they are guilty as sin, maybe not, but why simply assume that they are TERRORISTS without any form of confirm the truth of such a meaningful designation? How much do YOU trust your government?

  63. And no wonder all Western countries, except Canada, insisted that the U.S. send their nationals home.

    Are you shitting me? Half these assholes would have been home years ago if their countries would take them.

    The reason I don't argue with liberals is it's like arguing with women. It's just bizarre, and I don't have a clue how they think.

  64. They won't be challenging their accusers, marxist lawyers will be doing the talking.

    Do I trust my government more than a muslim? You bet your ass I do. Unlike you, I know the difference between my kind and a muslim.

    Black hole? Sure. Why should I care more about what happens than either Mohammed or his fellow muslims do?

    Thanks to leftards the third conjecture gets closer every day.

  65. Taliban Free 1,200 in Attack on Afghan Prison

    In a brazen attack, Taliban fighters assaulted the main prison in the southern Afghan city of Kandahar on Friday night, blowing up the mud walls, killing 15 guards and freeing around 1,200 inmates. Among the escapees were about 350 Taliban members, including commanders, would-be suicide bombers and assassins, said Ahmed Wali Karzai, the head of Kandahar’s provincial council and a brother of President Hamid Karzai.

    “It is very dangerous for security. They are the most experienced killers and they all managed to escape,” he said by telephone from Kandahar.

    A Taliban spokesman, Qari Yousuf Ahmadi, said that the attack was carried out by 30 insurgents on motorbikes and two suicide bombers, and that they had freed about 400 Taliban members, The Associated Press reported.

  66. Canadian troops, part of the NATO force that is based outside Kandahar, were deployed to the prison but arrived after the prisoners had escaped. Afghan Army, police and intelligence personnel were pursuing the prisoners in the surrounding villages, Mr. Karzai said.

  67. The US military's new way forward, doug

    Allowing the natives to hold the criminals, instead of US, at a Naval Base or aboard a ship, at sea.

    As trish's own story attests, if you're on a US military base, overseas, you're still in a natural part of America.

    Panama, Germany, Korea, or Cuba.
    Where the US military stands, that's America.

    It's why the Iraqi won't sign on.

    Team43 tried to slide one by, claiming the US base in Cuba was different. The argument did not past muster.

    How are real estate values and sales holding up, in Costa Rica?
    After Miami cratered

  68. There's a fellow in Tambor, he's payin' airfare and two nights @ Cristina's, for real buyers.

    Lots start at $40K USD

    Then another fellow, wants to sell his 64 hectre mountain top, $1.2 million

    Times seem to be tough, all over.

  69. Damned Iraqi, just do not want to become Americans, in their own land.

  70. "In a brazen attack, Taliban fighters assaulted the main prison in the southern Afghan city of Kandahar on Friday night, blowing up the mud walls, killing 15 guards and freeing around 1,200 inmates. Among the escapees were about 350 Taliban members, including commanders, would-be suicide bombers and assholes..."

    Oh, man. What a juicy target that woulda been for the gunship. If it's got two legs and running, it's dead. Break our hearts.

    Those 350 are headed for the border. And it won't take them long.

  71. "It's why the Iraqi won't sign on."

    Oh, we'll give 'em a semantic way to save face and they'll sign on. Before the mandate expires. Because without it, we got no legal reason to be there. And they want us there bad enough.

  72. But the gunships, they must be few, and far between, there in Afghanistan.

    Couldn't get one scrambled, in time, to make a difference.

    To bad those Talabani did not escape from an Iraqi prison, then we coulda showed 'em.

    The audacity of those Talabani, to fight US where we ain't got all our stuff.

    It's just not fair.

  73. That'd be the hope, trish.
    But there are a bunch of them Iraqi, don't want US there, on our terms.
    A lot of 'em seem to be in their Government. Or the powers behind the scenes.

    al-Sistani, first and foremost.

  74. Not enough manpower to draw on to seal the border in a pinch, either.

  75. "they" want US do they? Praise the Lord and pass the gun so we can partner with that grand cohesive "Iraqi they".

  76. Let's see, the mandate expires and the new US President has what, 18 months to withdraw?

    Or less?

    Better have a President with a Plan, for that scenario.
    Mr McCain is so sure that the Iraqi will sign, he's promoting a hundred year stay if that's what we needs to convince Iraqi to become Americans.
    As long as US casualties are low, who'd here really care?

    McCain knows we can fight the "non-War", forever

  77. al-Sistani, first and foremost.

    Fri Jun 13, 11:37:00 PM EDT

    al Sistani, and Malaki's own Dawa, want what Maliki needs - a change in the language that still covers both their, and our, legal ends. That's what they'll get. Before winter sets in.

  78. Better be before September.

    Or tha US/Iraq alliance will go the way of the ABM Treaty.

    Unilateral withdrawal

  79. (With any luck a handful of those 350 will mix in with some Frontier Corps guys and we get another twofer. That shouldn't be too hard to set up.)

  80. Maybe get a chance to whack a couple of moles.

    Three cheers!!!

    Especially when we already had 'em
    And didn't whack 'em, then.

    Maybe they'll go to a graveyard, for a funeral.
    And find the Sanctuary of Holy Ground.

    There can be only one.

  81. "Maybe get a chance to whack a couple of moles."

    Ain't nuthin' wrong with whackin' moles. It just better not be the only thing you're doing.

    "We" didn't have 'em. The Afghans did. And without minimizing the pucker-factor of the incident (WTF were the Canadians?) there probably weren't any serious Lex Luthers among them. Those "we" have at Bagram. AKA Toon Town.


  82. Ash would put Bin Laden up in front of an Ohio jury, I can't help but smiling.

    I can imagine the judge's instructions to the jury, how they should carefully weigh all the evidence, not let their personal emotions become involved, consider the benefit of the doubt, etc.

  83. It's rather moot. We have no desire nor reason nor intent to take him or Zawahiri breathing. Hell no.

  84. I hope you're right, and think you are.

  85. Ireland Derails a Bid to Recast Europe’s Rules

    The defeat of a treaty to consolidate the European Union’s power shows that many Europeans feel alienated from it.

    Europe was thrown into political turmoil on Friday by Ireland’s rejection of the Lisbon Treaty, a painstakingly negotiated blueprint for consolidating the European Union’s power and streamlining its increasingly unwieldy bureaucracy.

    The defeat of the treaty, by a margin of 53.4 percent to 46.6 percent, was the result of a highly organized “no” campaign that had played to Irish voters’ deepest visceral fears about the European Union.

    For all its benefits, many people in Ireland and in Europe feel that the union is remote, undemocratic and ever more inclined to strip its smaller members of the right to make their own laws and decide their own futures.

    The repercussions of Friday’s vote are enormous. To take effect, the treaty must be ratified by all 27 members of the European Union. So the defeat by a single country, even one as small as Ireland, has the potential effect of stopping the whole thing cold.

    Reacting with frustration to the vote, other European countries said they would try to press ahead for a way to make the Lisbon Treaty work after all and would discuss the matter when their leaders meet in Brussels next week.

  86. If the Englanders ever have a vote, they may vote it down too. I'm right aren't I, the people haven't voted on it in England?