Obama the Betrayer: Tyranny and Permanent War
by Stephen Lendman
In a White House ceremony, he signed the infamous Military Commissions Act (MCA). It authorized torture as official policy.
It also enacted sweeping unconstitutional powers to arrest, interrogate, and prosecute alleged terrorist suspects and collaborators (including US citizens), detain them (without evidence) indefinitely in military prisons, and deny them habeas and other constitutional protections.
It lets presidents call anyone anywhere an “unlawful enemy combatant,” order them arrested, detained and denied all rights.
On the same day, Bush quietly signed the FY 2007 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Included were hidden Sections 1076 and 333. Major media scoundrels ignored them.
They amended the 1807 Insurrection Act and 1878 Posse Comitatus Act. They prohibited using federal and National Guard troops for law domestic enforcement except as constitutionally allowed or expressly authorized by Congress in times of insurrection or other national emergency.
Henceforth, the executive, by diktat, can claim emergency powers, declare martial law, suspend the Constitution on “national security” grounds, and deploy federal and/or National Guard troops on US streets to suppress whatever’s called disorder – including lawful peaceful protests.
At issue is abolishing fundamental First Amendment freedoms without which all others are at risk. They include free expression, assembly, religion, and right to petition government for redress. No longer.
In 2009, Obama assured military commission continuity by signing the FY 2010 Defense Authorization Act. Its hidden Section 1031 contained the 2009 Military Commissions Act (MCA). The phrase “unprivileged enemy belligerent” replaced “unlawful enemy combatant.”
Language changed but not intent or lawlessness. Obama exceeds Bush extremism. Guantanamo and other torture prisons remain open. US citizens are treated as lawlessly as foreign nationals. Ahead things got worse.
On December 31, he signed the FY 2012 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). It gives presidents unchecked power to order military force arrests and indefinite detentions of US citizens, based solely on uncorroborated accusations of terrorist group associations.
Constitutional, statute and international law protections don’t apply. America’s military may snatch and grab anyone, throw them in torture prisons, and hold them indefinitely without charge or trial, based solely on suspicions, spurious allegations or none at all.