Saturday, December 01, 2001
Some end-of-the-week hoyblurbs (that's what I'm calling them for now, if you've got a better suggestion please send it my way) from around the Internet, and around the world.
Quote of the Day: It's God's job to judge Osama bin Laden; it's the U.S. Marines job to arrange a face-to-face meeting.
Was former President Bill Clinton responsible for the economic boom of the '90s? For the most part, no. Clinton was smart enough to not try to manage the economy and just go along for the ride. However, despite the spin that Clinton and former administration officials are trying to sell on various television talk shows since Sept. 11, there is ample evidence that Clinton failed miserably in dealing with the threat of terrorism. National Review's Byron York lays out a very detailed and convincing critique of what may become known as the former Democratic president's greatest failure.
So Clinton talked tough. But he did not act tough. Indeed, a review of his years in office shows that each time the president was confronted with a major terrorist attack — the February 26, 1993, bombing of the World Trade Center, the Khobar Towers attack, the August 7, 1998, bombing of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, and the October 12, 2000, attack on the USS Cole — Clinton was preoccupied with his own political fortunes to an extent that precluded his giving serious and sustained attention to fighting terrorism.
You can read the entire article here.
Why do we need to listen in on conversations between terrorists and their lawyers? In Friday's Wall Street Journal Daniel Henninger defends various Justice Department moves to protect Americans' life against those who would prefer that Americans have liberty, if they can survive a terrorist attack.
Rule 1.6 of the American Bar Association's Model Rules of Professional Conduct says "a lawyer may reveal [my emphasis] such information to the extent the lawyer reasonably believes necessary: to prevent the client from committing a criminal act that the lawyer believes is likely to result in imminent death or substantial bodily harm . . ." That "may reveal" is not mere prose. Other lawyers argued at the time for a mandatory obligation to report, but the ABA made it optional. It is not hard to imagine some lawyers convincing themselves that this "opt out" provision would relieve them of the burden of monitoring the speech or intent of their al Qaeda-related clients in the U.S.
Bork bites back: Also in Friday's edition of National Review Online former solicitor general and supreme court nominee Robert H. Bork defends the use of military tribunals against terrorists, at home and abroad.
Trials in federal courts have features that make them totally inappropriate for the trial of terrorists. Jurors often respond to emotional appeals, and, in any event, would have good reason to fear for their and their families' safety if they convicted. Criminal trials have been adorned by judges with a full panoply of procedural hurdles that guarantee a trial of many months. Appeals and petitions for habeas corpus can take years, and should the death sentence be given, the ACLU has shown how to delay execution for ten years or more through appeals followed by one habeas corpus petition after another.
Bork also makes the argument that President Bush shouldn't have exempted American citizens from being tried in the military tribunals. Though I would not necessarily endorse that move, he does make a historical point. You can read the entire article here.
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