Comments Posted By Hawkeye
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The current threat from jihad is far more dangerous than the USSR, not less.

The USSR presented us with an obvious, easily identifiable enemy, who, though they used unconventional means at times, was a conventionally based nation-state which had limits on its behavior. Not from moral considerations, but from self-interest; the USSR wanted to continue its existence.

Our current theat comes from a resugent fascism that has thrown off some of the key weaknesses that were important in the defeat of fascism 60 years ago. It is no longer rigidly tied to nation-states in the same way. Now, the ideology is only loosely tied to some states. This makes it more flexible, and harder to engage by the conventional means which have been our cultural preference and strong suit. Worse yet, is the effect in non-material terms - it makes it much harder to convince people that we are indeed in a war at all, let alone one for our survival (though the other side has repeatedly told us so for at least 25 years), and therefore more difficult to focus and maintain the determination of the people without which democratic societies cannot fight.

The current crop of jihadis dispalys all the key traits that have been common to fascism wherever it has appeared under any name, and a degree of fanaticism that is uncommon. The limits of self-interest that limited the actions of the USSR are simply not relevent when dealing with people who actively seek their own destuction as the shortest path tto their ultimate goal.

Comment Posted By Hawkeye On 28.01.2006 @ 20:15

I note something interesting in this post. Once more, Lincoln and the suspension of habeas corpus is mentioned, and once again the reflexive condemnation of the action. No one seems to question this reaction anymore.
I find that unfortunate, since I am not convinced Lincoln's action was quite so unarguably unconstitutional as is assumed.

Article I, sec. 9 reads: "The Privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it."

Article I deals with the Congress, but section 9 lists not Congressional powers, but limits on that power. So this tells us that Congress cannot pass a law restricting habeas corpus except in certain conditions. Two important points here - the Constitution itself says habeas corpus is a privilege not a right, and it foresees a legitimate need to suspend it. The conditions, war and insurrection, certainly seem to apply to Lincoln.

The question then is whether the President can suspend habeas corpus.

It seems the generally accpted answer is "no." I'm not sure it is so clear.

Article I, Section. 1. "The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America."


Article II, Section. 2. "The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States . . ."

These provisions put few limits on the President in his handeling of war and rebellion, exactly the conditions given for suspension of HC. Lincoln's order was challenged by the SCOTUS, but this opinion cane from CJ Roger Taney, the same towering legal mind that had delivered up the _Dred Scott_ decision.

Lincoln had a better case than he is usually granted.

Comment Posted By Hawkeye On 28.01.2006 @ 18:43


Dear Mr. Pitt, If only you could really arrange it.

The last time the Democrats (a large part of them at least) walked out, the Congress got more done in the following four years than in the preceeding forty.

Comment Posted By Hawkeye On 24.01.2006 @ 17:30

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