In yesterday’s Liberty and Justice for Non-Muslims, NY Times opinion editor Andrew Rosenthal finally speaks about the US policy of no legal rights for Muslims.
It’s so important that Rosenthal and the Times finally lift this veil -- prompted in part by the outrageous, warrantless, widespread, federally funded, illegal NYPD surveillance of innocent Muslims, uncovered this year in a series of stories by the Associated Press.
Here are the rules now being followed:
For a Muslim to be spied upon by anyone in government, search warrants or evidence of a crime is optional.
For a Muslim to be
kidnapped and/or imprisoned for life indefinitely detained, no evidence is required. A magic word can be uttered secretly in the White House.
If there is evidence a Christian or Jew has been tortured, the Geneva Conventions and the Convention Against Torture require a mandatory investigation and prosecution -- no exceptions. If a Muslim is tortured by Americans, that requirement is waived. There’s no prosecution or investigation -- even when those who ordered and condoned the torture, like Vice President Cheney, confess that they’re proud and would “do it again” -- on Sunday morning TV while launching their book tour.
The rest of the rules, including the magic word, below the fold.
Scrabble players know the magic word. QAID is a Q word that doesn’t need a U. The Scrabble dictionary defines it: a Muslim leader. It’s also the root of Al Qaeda. While the organization “Al Qaeda” has no official membership list, the phrase is written into the new bipartisan National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that explains who can be locked up permanently without evidence, charges, or a trial. A Muslim leader.
And the US government can kill any Muslim anywhere, with a drone or however it can -- without sharing evidence, charges or trial, let alone a conviction -- and without ever revealing how they were chosen or why. Simply utter the magic word. “Al Qaeda” is all we’ve been officially told about why US citizens Anwar Al Awlaki and his teenage son were killed by bombs from drone weapons.
Our leaders, like Senator Feinstein, believe these policies will keep us safer -- as long as our government is secretive enough about them.
But they actually makes things much worse.
The actual terrorist attack attempts since 9-11 were made by Americans who say they were outraged by those policies -- incensed that innocent Muslims in Guantanamo and elsewhere are treated as less than human, denied a chance to prove their innocence, and are usually found innocent if evidence ever is presented.
Senator Feinstein considers herself an expert on national security, but she and her colleagues have this exactly backwards.
Imagine if instead, people all over the world could see: in America, spying on Muslims without evidence or warrants is truly illegal -- because those who do it, like NYPD Commissioner Kelly, are punished. Imagine we all could see that kidnapping, torturing, or killing a Muslim leads to an investigation or prosecution instead of being condoned -- even if that means challenging someone powerful in the US government. Imagine the world could see Muslims being treated like citizens with rights, not presumed criminals or animals.
How long would America remain ‘The Great Satan” in anyone’s eyes? If we followed the law, how could the latest “Al Qaeda” ever convince anyone that violent jihad is the path to justice?
Andrew Rosenthal of The New York Times joins Salon’s Glenn Greenwald and a growing chorus of Americans who realize our national security policy is illegal, immoral and bigoted; recklessly endangers our troops; and makes us all less safe.
If I'm elected to the US Senate, these issues and counterproductive, unjust laws like the NDAA will finally be debated in the US Senate. A Senator from America's largest state will tirelessly work to repeal them. We'll all be safer when America sets aside its fears and acknowledges that even Muslims deserve justice.
David Levitt is challenging Dianne Feinstein to represent California, on the ballot as a Democrat in the 2012 US Senate race. You can show your support on Facebook at facebook.com/Levitt2012, follow us on Twitter @Levitt2012, or contribute to a unique citizen-funded campaign with no lobbyist or corporate money.
If in the June primary he receives more votes than Republican birther Orly Taitz, Levitt and Feinstein can be the only choices on November’s California Senate ballot.