First president Obama becomes Bush in all but name with respect to his predecessor's economic policies, and now he follows by espousing Bush's interpretation of "civil rights" as well. According to Politico, the White House is preparing an Executive Order for indefinite detention. And while the premise behind a comparable draft has been circulating around for 18 months, the uptake was seen as problematic. The "humanitarian" premise behind the order is that it will "provide for the periodic reviews of evidence against dozens of prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay... and allow for the possibility that detainees from countries like Yemen might be released if circumstances change." That's the theory. The "practice" is that the Order will, as the name implies, afford the administration the option of "indefinite detention as a long-term Obama administration policy and makes clear that the White House alone will manage a review process for those it chooses to hold without charge or trial." In other words all those, and we assume that the Order is not merely targeting those involved in September 11, and is wider in its scope, who are perceived by the administration as "high value detainees" will be denied due process, and will be held in captivity essentially indefinitely with no legal recourse, for as long as the "review process" so deems fit. As for the "theory" aspect, Politico summarizes just how much of a bold lie Obama's promise two years ago to close Guantanamo has become: "Nearly two years after Obama's pledge to close the prison at Guantanamo, more inmates there are formally facing the prospect of lifelong detention and fewer are facing charges than the day Obama was elected." In other words, Obama has one upped Dubya not only when it comes to Republican economic policy, but has in fact surpassed his abrogation of basic human rights. And seeing how in the aftermath of the Assange arrest (speaking of which, Julian better run following this announcement), it is only a matter of time before that whole 'Internet free speech' premise is perceived to be a form of treason, by the likes of Biden, Palin and Lieberman, potentially punishable if not by death, then certainly indefinite, lifelong detention.
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