This whole case blows my fucking mind.
On Monday the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the dismissal of a suit that sought to hold former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft and other politicians and bureaucrats accountable for the torture of an innocent man. In 2002 U.S. police seized Maher Arar, an innocent Canadian citizen, at JFK airport, held him incommunicado for weeks, and then “rendered” him to Syria to be tortured. He was tortured for a year in Syria.
The Supreme Court puts Ashcroft on trial, against the desires of the Obama Administration. But then the Supreme Court did not explain the reasoning — of course not, why does it need to? — in upholding the November 2009 decision by the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to uphold a 2006 District Court dismissal of the case on the grounds that he lacked “lacked standing.”
So, then, in the words of the 2nd Circuit:
“When a case presents the intractable ‘special factors’ apparent here . . . it is . . . not for us as judges . . . to decide whether an individual may seek compensation from government officers and employees directly, or from the government, for a constitutional violation.”
Wow really? So I guess this means the “Torture Victim Protection Act” of 1991 was a really pointless piece of legislation then, right? Welcome to the Fourth Reich.
Look at these nice, charming Germans, relaxing in the sun at the Auschwitz concentration camp…
Has it ever struck you that human beings can relax and watch while other people are tortured?
Just look at these Nazis: they’re all part of the same, evil bureaucracy where everyone is guilty of the same acts. But no one actually does anything about it, and nobody seems to feel guilty, because it’s a conspiracy for which they’re all a part of. The reality that people in the room behind them are being tortured to death is such a banal, and such a trivial fact of life, that none of them could really give a shit less. They’re following the chain of command; they won’t challenge authority because they’ve been conditioned into submission.
At least some of you know what’s wrong – right?
The institutions where people like John Ashcroft and Obama’s Neal Katyal conspire against unwitting people, have gotten so powerful, so removed from people, that you have no control over them at all. “Write your congressman,” is a load of bullshit. Even now these political and lawmaking motherfuckers were trying to cover up their actions and the actions of other bureaucrats.
Obama’s acting solicitor general, Neal Katyal, urged the Supreme Court to not even take Maher Arar’s case, arguing that the court shouldn’t investigate the communications between the United States and other countries because it might damage diplomatic relations and affect national security. It might even raise questions, Mr. Katyal wrote, about “the motives and sincerity of the United States officials who concluded that petitioner could be removed to Syria.”
Maher Arar said in a statement that the decision took away “my last bit of hope in the judicial system of the United States.”