Thursday, April 2, 2009

BUSH CAPOS OKAYED DITCHING CONSTITUTION

Matthew Rothschild, Progressive - The Bush Justice Department, if you can call it that, issued legal opinions in late 2001 asserting that the President had the authority to use the military within the US against suspected terrorists, and that he could use the military to barge into your home without a warrant.

"The warrant and probable cause requirements . . . are unsuited to the demands of wartime and the military necessity to successfully prosecute a war against an enemy," said an October 23, 2001, memo.

The authors were John Yoo, who was then deputy assistant attorney general, and Robert Delahunty, who was special counsel at the Justice Department. And they sent the memo to Alberto Gonzales, then the counsel to the President.

Domestic eavesdropping without a warrant was also OK, according to Bush lawyers at Justice.

They also said the President could unilaterally abrogate treaties, and that Congress had no say-so over the treatment of detainees.

Yoo and Delahunty clearly contemplated waging war here at home.

"Efforts to fight terrorism may require not only the usual wartime regulations of domestic affairs, but also military actions that have normally occurred abroad," said the Yoo-Delahunty memo.

It contemplated using the U.S. military in the United States for "attacking civilian targets, such as apartment buildings, offices, or ships where suspected terrorists were thought to be; and employing electronic surveillance methods more powerful and sophisticated than those available to law enforcement agencies." And it recognized that these actions could be "involving as they might American citizens.". . .

Yoo and Delahunty also proposed shelving the First Amendment. "First Amendment speech and press rights may also be subordinated to the overriding need to wage war successfully," they wrote.

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