THE DAILY BLADE: SEALs Send Somali Pirates To Davy Jones Locker
Now that President Barack Obama has successfully navigated the shoals of his first international hostage crisis, the Jimmy Carter comparisons will stop – for a while, anyway. Notes Boston Globe columnist H.D.S. Greenway:
Obama was lucky that it was only one American, and not a whole embassy full as in
Obama was lucky, too, in that he was dealing with pirates beyond the law of any nation, not a sovereign state, and on the open ocean and not among the warrens of a hostile town. The whole incident was over in a matter of days, not months.
For his part, Washington Post columnist David Ignatius points out that “[j]ust as the policy mavens were beginning to debate elaborate political-military strategies for dealing with the Somali pirates, we were reminded that the best solution is sometimes the simplest and most direct - in this case, a sniper’s rifle,” adding:
[T]his was a correct and proportionate use of military power. …
This is the kind of problem for which U.S. Special Forces and the covert operators of the Central Intelligence Agency were created. They can move quickly and quietly to alter the balance of power on the ground, just as they have done at sea.
Um, it’s not so much that U.S. presidents favor all-out war, whether willy-nilly or otherwise, but that their hands have been tied ever since president Gerald Ford’s 1976 Executive Order 11905: United States Foreign Intelligence Activities (“No employee of the United States Government shall engage in, or conspire to engage in, political assassination.”).
Meanwhile, The Christian Science Monitor wonders about the legal status of the surviving Somali pirate and whether he will be tried in
[A]ggressive US defense lawyers might tie up the case in a flurry of motions – including questions about the suspect's potential status as a minor.
"Everyone agrees that pirates are bad, but the issue is what are you going to do with them," says Michael Passman, a lawyer with the
Justice Department officials declined to comment Monday on the status of the case, and whether the suspect would eventually be sent to the
Defense officials estimate that all four alleged pirates were between the ages of 17 and 19. Under international and US law, younger defendants are generally not held to the same level of culpability as adults. Proving the precise age of the suspected pirate may be difficult, given the level of disorder in
The high profile of the case, however, would make it unusual for the Obama administration to pass it on to Kenya, which has agreed to prosecute piracy cases in the Horn of Africa region, analysts say.
Until last week, no
Now that Somali pirates are going after American ships, The Stiletto suggests that as the terrorists and jihadis housed at Gitmo are released, their cells should be occupied by captured Somali pirates.
Hopelessly Changeless: Broken Campaign Promises Watch: Part VI
The New York Times has coined a new euphemism for “broken campaign promise” (emphasis, The Stiletto):
President Obama came to office promising swift and comprehensive action to combat global climate change …
Yet the administration has taken a cautious and rather passive role on the issue, proclaiming broad goals while remaining aloof from details of climate legislation now in Congress.
The president’s budget initially included roughly $650 billion in revenue over 10 years from a cap-and-trade emissions plan that he wants adopted. But the administration, while insisting that its health care initiative be protected, did not fight to keep cap-and-trade in the budget resolutions that Congress passed last week, and it wound up in neither the House’s version nor the Senate’s.
Overseas, American officials are telling their counterparts that they need time to gauge the American public’s appetite for an ambitious carbon reduction scheme before leading any international effort.
Has the administration scaled back its global-warming goals, at least for this year, or is it engaged in sophisticated misdirection?
Is This One Of Those Jobs That “Americans Won’t Do?”: Part XIII
Vilas County (WI) district attorney Al Moustakis is looking for a 5’ 8”, 140-lb. woman who is willing to stick her head in a toilet bowl so he can prove that Douglas Plude drowned his wife Genell Plude and that she had not pulled a Lupe Vélez as he claims, reports The Associated Press:
Plude, 42, was convicted of first-degree intentional homicide in 2002. But the Wisconsin Supreme Court threw out the conviction last year after learning that an expert witness who conducted the first round of toilet tests exaggerated his credentials. Plude has been released from prison pending the second trial, which is expected to begin in October.
Prosecutors contend Plude murdered his 28-year-old wife because she was about to leave him. They say he poisoned her with a migraine drug and pushed her face into the toilet to drown her while she vomited.
[Hat Tip: The Heel, an Ivy-educated attorney with a prestigious
Editorial Note: You’d be amazed at some of the jobs Americans are doing. To read previous posts in the “Is This One Of Those Jobs …” series, click on the links in the sidebar on the right.
Never Again Or Forgive And Forget?
Columnist and FOX News pundit Susan Estrich writes that “[l]earning the lessons of history is vitally important so that history's worst chapters do not keep repeating themselves” - in other words, never again. But then she adds this caveat, “[e]mbracing the injuries of history only makes certain that the injuries will never heal” – in other words, forgive and forget.
The specific “injury” she addresses is the Armenian Genocide:
Were Armenians the victims of a Turkish genocide a century ago, or was it, as the Turks were urging last week on the eve of the president's visit, a case of atrocities on both sides? The lessons of history matter, but do they matter at the cost of finding peace today? Can we learn lessons without hating the grandchildren or great-grandchildren of those who wronged us?
The Nuremberg Trials brought the architects of the Final Solution to justice, but the Young Turks escaped formal justice by going into exile – though their leaders, who devised and orchestrated the Armenian Genocide, each met a fittingly violent demise in a sort of rough justice; Germany paid Israel reparations for Jewish slave labor and properties confiscated by the Nazis, but the Turks have never made similar restitution to the Armenians; and Germany has outlawed Nazism and anti-Semitism, whereas Turkey has outlawed any mention of the Armenian Genocide in books, newspapers or popular entertainment.
At the expense of the still-aggrieved Armenians, Estrich magnanimously writes: “There is nothing any of us can do about the wrongs committed by our "ancestors." And at a certain point, there is nothing we should try to do about the wrongs committed against them.” Oh, really?
Well, as luck would have it Estrich has the perfect opportunity to put her convictions to the test now that federal officials have released accused Nazi guard John Demjanjuk, 89, from custody after a three-judge panel of the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals stayed his deportation to Germany to face war crimes charges. The Associated Press reports:
In granting the stay, the three-judge panel said it would further consider Demjanjuk's motion to reopen the
John Demjanjuk Jr., who filed the appeal with the 6th Circuit earlier Tuesday, said the government hadn't lived up to earlier understandings of how his father would be removed.
"They told me that they would have an ambulance. They told me we would have three to five days' notice, and obviously you can't believe everything the government tells you," he told The Associated Press …
"If he is deported, if this madness and inhumane action is not stopped by the 6th Circuit, he will live out his life in a (German) hospital. He will never be put on trial," he said. "It makes absolutely no sense that the Germans, after nearly killing him in combat, would try to kill him once again."
"We remain confident that John Demjanjuk will be deported and finally face the bar of justice for the unspeakable crimes he committed during World War II when he was a guard at the Sobibor death camp," said Rabbi Marvin Hier,
Demjanjuk, a native Ukrainian, has denied being a Nazi guard and claims he was a prisoner of war of the Germans. He came to the
Unless she is a hypocrite, Estrich must believe that there is “nothing we should do” about the wrongs that may have been committed by Demjanjuk and that this ailing old man should be left alone, as nature will soon take its course. The Stiletto is waiting with bated breath for her column on the subject.
Reminder: The New Agenda’s Violence Against Women Forum Is On Saturday
The New Agenda will hold a forum on Violence Against Women in NYC at the