From Philadelphia to Room 101

from the Washington Post, 4 Nov 06:
"The Bush administration has told a federal judge that terrorism suspects held in secret CIA prisons should not be allowed to reveal details of the 'alternative interrogation methods' that their captors used to get them to talk. The government says in new court filings that those interrogation methods are now among the nation's most sensitive national secrets and that their release--even to the detainee's own attorneys--'could reasonably be expected to cause extremely grave damage.'"

"You asked me once," said O'Brien, "what was in Room 101. I told you that you know the answer already. Everybody knows. The thing in Room 101 is the worst thing in the world."

Let us recap the story thus far:
1. The President reserves the right to jail, without due process of trial or even contact with attorneys, anyone in the world, including United States citizens (for example, Jose Padilla), whom he deems to be "enemy combatants."
2. The determination of who is and who is not an "enemy combatant" is soley the jurisdiction of the President, without appeal or judicial oversight. No evidence need be presented. The criteria upon which the President makes this determination are secret. The sources of the information are classified.
3. Even if contact with an attorney is approved, one may not communicate information about one's detention, though the conditions of the detention might themselves constitute a crime. Imagine that if you are picked up by the police and beaten, then try to tell an someone about the violence, you will be charged with revealing police department secrets, while the officers will remain unpunished.

We are at war with terrorism. We have always been at war with terrorism.


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