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Exit Habeas Corpus, Enter Night and Fog

Kurt Nimmo | October 18 2006

As if to confirm that Republicans are indeed a fascist rabble, consider their uniform silence in regard to the military commissions bill, otherwise known as the monstrosity that ate the Constitution, specifically Article 1, Section 9, dealing with habeas corpus.

Republicans, who are primarily neocons, that is to say fascist authoritarians, consider themselves patriots, and yet almost to the man and a few women they have not said a word about the evisceration of habeas corpus, once considered such an elemental liberty it was the only one enumerated in the original text of the Constitution.

The elimination of habeas corpus, a bedrock right going back to 1215 and the Magna Carta, did not even as much as merit a passing mention on the Drudge Report, probably one of the most popular Republican web sites on the internet.

Instead, if we are to believe Drudge, Republicans are interested Madonna going to Africa and adopting babies. The sanctimonious Hillary, who voted for killing habeas corpus with nary a blink, wearing a small diamond-studded cross warrants an all caps link, but the death of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights does not. And oh, incidentally, Matt Drudge feels it is important you know the mother of Chris Rock was discriminated against at a Cracker Barrel restaurant in South Carolina. All the insipid and meaningless news fit to print, but not a word about the end of our once cherished republic.

Republicans, and no shortage of Democrats, have sold you and me down the river to a place where we can be abducted, tortured, and killed in secret, no different than the unfortunate desaparecidos of El Salvador. How long before we suffer our own Operation Condor, as did the people of Chile, Argentina and Uruguay? How long before we go through our very own Nacht und Nebel, or Night and Fog?

Lately, a few people have told me I use the Nazi example too much, but what happened today, with the unitary decider signing away our long-standing right to not be held by the state without a day in court is a perfect match for what happened in Nazi Germany after the Reichstag Fire Decree. In fact, the Night and Fog decree is a near perfect example, as the Nazis used it to disappear the political opposition. Hitler and his minions would not be bothered by what they considered unnecessary rules, so they grabbed all who organized to oppose them.

“After lengthy consideration, it is the will of the Führer that the measures [be] taken against those who are guilty of offenses against the Reich,” declared SS Reichsführer Heinrich Himmler. “Efficient and enduring intimidation can only be achieved either by capital punishment or by measures by which the relatives of the criminals do not know the fate of the criminal. The prisoners are, in future, to be transported to Germany secretly, and further treatment of the offenders will take place here; these measures will have a deterrent effect because: A. The prisoners will vanish without a trace. B. No information may be given as to their whereabouts or their fate,” decreed Field Marshall Wilhelm Keitel.

Considering the mindset of the neocons, who have so far slaughtered over 600,000 Iraqis, our disappeared may very well suffer the fate of political dissidents during Argentina’s “Dirty War”: forced to jump out of airplanes far out over the Atlantic Ocean, but not before enduring torture. Argentina’s los desaparecidos were never found, simply disappeared into Night and Fog, and thus, without bodies, the government denied they had been killed. In this way, between 1976 and 1983, up to 30,000 dissidents were liquidated.

“Disappearances work on two levels: not only do they effectively silence those opposition members who have disappeared, they also sow uncertainty and terror in the wider community in general, thus silencing other opposition voices, current and potential alike,” explains Wikipedia. “Disappearances entail the violation of a series of basic human rights and fundamental freedoms. For the disappeared person, these include the right to liberty, the right to personal security and humane treatment (including freedom from torture), the right to a fair trial, to legal counsel, and to equal protection under the law, the right of presumption of innocence, et cetera. The families, who often spend the rest of their lives in searches for remains of the disappeared, also become victims of the disappearance’s effects.”

If you think the Military Commissions Act of 2006 was crafted strictly for aliens and foreign Muslims, think again.

It was devised to go after the opposition in this country, as it presents more of a challenge and threat to the neocon order than a handful of Arabs.

As citizens begin disappearing into the night and fog, will Matt Drudge continue posting meaningless articles about Madonna?

Matt Drudge and faithful neocon-wannabes of all stripe need to take heed and bone up on a bit of history. Although it will likely irk my readers who believe I use the Nazi example a bit too much here, the example of Hitler’s Reichsmordwoche, or Nacht der langen Messer, Night of the Long Knives, should serve.

On the night of June 30 and Sunday July 1, 1934, Hitler ordered potential political rivals in the Sturmabteilung massacred. Stalin had his Great Purge and “river of blood,” culminating in the assassination of Trotsky. Invariably, totalitarian and authoritarian regimes, unable to withstand even minor disagreement, take out not only the opposition, but allies who may, however tenuously, become the opposition of tomorrow.

Bill O’Reilly should take note.


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