Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Night & Fog

I still remember the movie though it was a short one by modern standards -- only about a half hour long. It was called "Night and Fog" and it was a chilling tale of how the Third Reich 'disappeared' its political enemies.

In 1941 Hitler issued the "Nacht und Nebel Erlass" (Night and Fog decree) to insure that political enemies, Soviet prisoners and other unwanted folks just vanished without a trace.

To quote the Wikipedia entry on the outcome of the decree:

"First, distinct actions against the German government were made far more difficult, because the exact cause of interment or death, indeed whether or not the event had even occurred; was obscured. It kept the Nazis from being held accountable.

The decree and hidden events afforded the Nazis the ability to act cruelly and unjustly without public decry.

It allowed an across-the-board Silent Veto of International Treaties and Conventions: one cannot apply the limits and terms of humane treatment in war if one cannot locate the victim or discern his destiny."

You folks know where I'm going with this. Our beloved democracy is being razed to the ground by those who swear they are trying to keep us safe. In so doing, they have caused irreperable harm to our way of life and have 'disappeared' both the innocent and the guilty. Are all those who were subject to 'rendition' innocent? Probably not. But if they are guilty, then put them on trial in a legal court of law, not behind closed doors. That has always been America's hallmark, our system of justice. To hold someone in custody for over three years without charges being filed and, in the case of Padilla (an American citizen), without being able to see a lawyer for a good portion of that time, is what I'd expect of a dictatorship. Hitler did it, so did Stalin. Our Rule of Law has always been the standard. Now it's being swept aside for 'our protection.'

Warrantless wiretapping was just one of the by-products of this regime. They're not worried if the wiretapping is legal. The prisoners aren't likely to see the inside of a court room. They just disappear into the night and fog.

It is time to clean house and put elected representatives in our government who understand what it means to be an American. Personally, I don't care if they're Republican, Democrat or whatever. It is time for "We the People" to take back our freedoms and keep ourselves safe from the fanatics both within and without.

If we don't save our democracy, the bad guys will win. And we allowed it to happen.

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