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And, yes, I DO take it personally: Glenn: The War on Terror has normalized even the most warped powers
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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Glenn: The War on Terror has normalized even the most warped powers

from the wapo...
President Obama plans to issue an executive order Wednesday giving the Treasury Department authority to freeze the U.S.-based assets of anyone who “obstructs” implementation of the administration-backed political transition in Yemen.
The unusual order, which administration officials said also targets U.S. citizens who engage in activity deemed to threaten Yemen’s security or political stability, is the first issued for Yemen that does not directly relate to counterterrorism.
Unlike similar measures authorizing terrorist designations and sanctions, the new order does not include a list of names or organizations already determined to be in violation. Instead, one official said, it is designed as a “deterrent” to “make clear to those who are even thinking of spoiling the transition” to think again. . . .
The order provides criteria to take action against people who the Treasury secretary, in consultation with the secretary of state, determines have “engaged in acts that directly or indirectly threaten the peace, security or stability of Yemen, such as acts that obstruct the implementation of the Nov. 23, 2011, agreement between the Government of Yemen and those in opposition to it, which provides for a peaceful transition of power . . . or that obstruct the political process in Yemen.”

Jeremy Scahill, who has reported extensively from Yemen over the last year, reacted to the news of this Executive Order this morning by writing: ”This Executive Order appears to be an attack on Americans’ 1st Amendment Rights and Yemenis’ rights to self-determination“; he added: ”apparently the 1st Amendment had an exception about Yemen in it that I missed.” He then asked a series of questions, including: “What if a Yemeni citizen doesn’t believe in a one candidate ‘election’ and is fighting to change their government? US sanctions?” and ”How would Obama define an American citizen as ‘indirectly’ threatening the stability of Yemen’s government?” and “what if an American citizen doesn’t support Yemen’s government and agitates for its downfall? Sanctions from US Treasury? Wow."

but wait, there's more...
[A] bipartisan group of House members is attempting to enact a law specifying that the indefinite detention powers vested in the President by last December’s passage of the NDAA does not apply to those arrested on U.S. soil; in other words, they are trying to ban military detention on American soil without charges. Even though President Obama, after he signed the bill into law, said he does not intend to use these powers for that purpose, the sponsors of this bill are concerned that — because the law does vest this power — Obama could change his mind at any time or a subsequent President could use those powers. Unfortunately, they are being opposed by key Democratic Senators such as Carl Levin in close cooperation with standard neocon members of Congress. As one tweeter wrote to me yesterday about this: “The fact that government has to be told NOT to do that is insane.” Indeed, and it’s easy to forget how frequently true that is. But the War on Terror has so normalized even the most warped powers — warrantless eavesdropping, torture, indefinite detention, renditions, due-process-free-assassinations, Executive Orders like the one today — that it’s sometimes easy to forget that this is the only real reaction that should be needed.

god i hate reading about this shit... it seems that a day doesn't go by without more bad news about the u.s. constitution and the bill of rights being summarily shredded...

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