Tag Archives | Chris Hedges
The National Defense Authorization Act contains some ugly draftsmanship and some head-scratchingly vague wording on the issue of battlefield captures. That said, my long time professional opinion was that it probably wasn’t something worth worrying overly much about, particularly when their were bigger fish to fry in the realm of warrantless wiretaps and the upcoming sunsetting of FISA provisions. That having been said, others have not been so germane to the problem, and for the moment at least, they have won a major victory in getting a permanent injunction against the section of the NDAA that caused the hubbub.
From the ruling:
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For the reasons set forth above, this Court permanently enjoins enforcement of § 1021(b)(2) in any manner, as to any person. The Court invites Congress to examine whether there are amendments that might cure the statute/s deficiencies or whether in light of existing authorization and existing
criminal statutes § 1021 is needed at all.
Travis Kelly writes on AntiWar.com:
If the founding fathers were spinning in their graves like centrifuges over recent assaults on the Constitution, their RPMs slowed down a bit last Wednesday when U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest ruled that Section 1021 in the latest National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), allowing military detention of American citizens without due process, is unconstitutional.
The lawsuit was brought by veteran journalist Chris Hedges, with attorneys Carl Mayer and Bruce Afran doing the heavy lifting without compensation. None thought they had a chance to win, given the juggernaut of military and police-state abuses that have rolled over us in the decade since 9/11. But as Hedges said after the verdict, “A stunning and monumental victory … every once in a while the gods smile on the damned.”
The defendants, President Obama and Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, had argued that this new NDAA merely codified what the panicked 2001 Authorization to Use Military Force (AUMF) had spawned over the last decade: indefinite military detention, unwarranted searches and seizures, assassination, torture — only now it all could be employed on American soil, against American citizens, however or whenever the president and Pentagon saw fit…
Opponents of a U.S. law they claim may subject them to indefinite military detention for activities including news reporting and political activism persuaded a federal judge to temporarily block the measure. U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest in Manhattan ruled in favor of a group of writers and activists who sued President Barack Obama, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and the Defense Department, claiming a provision of the National Defense Authorization Act, signed into law Dec. 31, puts them in fear that they could be arrested and held by U.S. armed forces. The complaint was filed Jan. 13 by a group including former New York Times reporter Christopher Hedges. The plaintiffs contend a section of the law allows for detention of citizens and permanent residents taken into custody in the U.S. on “suspicion of providing substantial support” to people engaged in hostilities against the U.S., such as al-Qaeda.
Last week the case against the National Defense Authorization Act was presented to a judge in New York. One of the plaintiffs in the case has decided to sue the Obama administration claiming that by simply doing his job he could be arrested and detained indefinitely due to the nature of his work, reporting. Chris Hedges, columnist for TruthDig, joins us to explain how his day in court went.
Via Infoshop News:
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On Wednesday, February 15, we launched several concurrent denial of service attacks against a website hosting an online panel discussion entitled “Occupying Beyond Divisions: Anarchy, Black Blocs and Protests” with Chris Hedges. After initially only creating a few minor disruptions, it was during the second half of the talk that we were finally successful in taking down the entire website, which remained offline further into the night.
We carried out this action because we regard this sort of institutionalized dialogue with the bourgeoisie’s hatemongering journalists about the nature of revolutionary violence to be a worthless diversion for any movement striving for the complete liberation of the oppressed. Having abandoned all pretensions of providing the public with socially responsible criticism, the once distinguished men and women of letters have reduced themselves to hacks: mechanically churning out one article after another in sycophantic defense of their corporate sponsors.
Via Nation of Change:
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Chris Hedges made this statement in New York City’s Zuccotti Park on Thursday morning during the People’s Hearing on Goldman Sachs, which he chaired with Dr. Cornel West. The activist and Truthdig columnist then joined a march of several hundred protesters to the nearby corporate headquarters of Goldman Sachs, where he was arrested with 16 others.
Goldman Sachs, which received more subsidies and bailout-related funds than any other investment bank because the Federal Reserve permitted it to become a bank holding company under its “emergency situation,” has used billions in taxpayer money to enrich itself and reward its top executives. It handed its senior employees a staggering $18 billion in 2009, $16 billion in 2010 and $10 billion in 2011 in mega-bonuses. This massive transfer of wealth upwards by the Bush and Obama administrations, now estimated at $13 trillion to $14 trillion, went into the pockets of those who carried out fraud and criminal activity rather than the victims who lost their jobs, their savings and often their homes.