The Long War

Does this get more Orwellian?

The President declares war, not on a country, but on 'terrorism' - something (like the war on drugs, the war on poverty, and the war on crime) that is largely incoherent as an object of 'war'. Indeed it reminds me of Caligula ordering his army to march into the sea and attack Poseidon.

But the GOP controlled Senate and Congress obediantly cowed to the rhetoric of 9-11 and WMDs and rolled back civil liberties (Jose Padilla, Gitmo, Abu Ghraib, etc.) in a shocking reversal of human rights and liberty - in the name of protecting human rights and liberty.

Now Bush wants to enshrine these Presidential powers, not by election, debate, or democratic mechanism. No, that would be too inefficient. The easiest way is to redefine the 'war' in terms of perpetual global conflict with the shadowy forces of terrorism, and then insist on the powers to deal with that threat.

Now, since terrorism is never going to be defeated, and since the President wants these increased powers for the duration of the conflict, bing-bang-boom, the President of the US needs to have war powers FOREVER.

In other words, the President of the US and his staff have; gutted the constitution, spit on the separation of powers, endorsed the practice of torture, violated the rule of Law both internationally and domestically and can now claim to be doing all of this within the powers of the President as constituted by his assumed war time powers.

It may well be the quietest military coup of a civilian government ever seen.

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