Friday, September 08, 2006

Why Does Bush Not Trust The Military?

Now that the Supreme Court has told "King" George that you are required to have some rules in trying combatants, the administration and congress are attempting to hammer out what those rules should be.

Apparently, the big bone of contention is whether a defendant should be able to see the prosecution's evidence. Congress says yes. Bush says no.

Of course those hard core lefties in the military agree with Congress.

Brig, Gen. James C. Walker, the top uniformed lawyer for the Marines, said that
no civilized country should deny a defendant the right to see the evidence
against him and that the United States 'should not be the first.

The quote reminded me of a congressional hearing I witnessed where all four JAG commanders testified. Each was asked the question, can we win the war on terror and still abide by the Geneva Convention? All four without hesitation answered yes. One went so far as to say he believed we could not win the war if we did not follow the Geneva Convention.

The military gets it. Why doesn't their Commander in Chief?

Source: Andrew Sullivan and NY Times.

1 comment:

Sara said...

I think it's a combination of 2 things: 1) this administration gets all pissy and defensive whenever anyone else tells them they can't do something--Congress, the Supreme Court, the Hague, the UN. They dig in their heels and INSIST on doing exactly what they've been told not to do.

And, sadly 2) I also think there's a pretty good chance that the "evidence" to convict some of these guys just isn't there or isn't reliable and can be ripped apart with effective lawyering. They want to be able to go in to these tribunals and say "he's a bad guy, just trust us." But if they need to have solid reliable evidence to back that up, evidence that can stand up to cross-examination or evidentiary tests for indicia of reliability (sorry, lawyer-speak) then the case probably gets a lot tougher to make with some of these folks. They's gonna be using a LOT of hearsay from folks who won't actually be available to testify to these tribunals, and some CIA guy saying "well so-and-so told me that he was there and involved" doesn't hold up as well when counsel gets to test it. Particularly if so-and-so's testimony was elicited through methods that could be considered torture and if those methods will be brought to light necessarily through the tribunal process.