Johnson won the right to burn the flag against enforced patriotism in the U.S. Supreme Court's 1989 landmark decision, Texas v. Johnson. For the police to effectively nullify this right in actual practice undermines this decision at a time when it is more imperative than ever to protect the right to dissent.
Glenn Greenwald made a point last week that people living in this country "should be made to know" the details of what the CIA was directed to do toward detainees. I agree with him. See the still heavily redacted report.
One excerpt: "...debriefer, according to a [redacted] who was present, threatened Al-Nashiri by saying that if he did not talk, 'We could get your mother in here,' and, 'We can bring your family in here.' The [redacted] debriefer reported wanted Al-Nashiri to infer, for psychological reasons, that the debriefer might be [redacted] intelligence office based on his Arabic dialect, and that Al-Nashiri was in [redacted] custody because it was widely believed in Middle East circles that [redacted] interrogation technique involves sexually abusing female relatives in front of the detainee."
Last Monday, Attorney General Eric Holder appointed a prosecutor to look into whether there should be further investigation of the CIA. What does that mean?
Ken Theisen writes on worldcantwait.org in "Limited Review" of Torture is Really a Cover-up that "It is readily apparent that Holder's announcement is not meant to hold those at the top of the Bush regime responsible for their criminal actions. At most, just like the investigation conducted after the revelations of atrocities at Abu Ghraib, only a few low-level players will face any sort of 'justice.’ Those ultimately responsible for torture, such as Bush, Cheney, Rice, Hadley, Addington, Yoo, etc. will escape accountability - if Obama gets his way."
Former VP "Dick" Cheney took to the news programs and stayed on his offensive against any sanction or even investigation into the CIA's torture.
Center for Constitutional Rights Board President Michael Ratner called the decision by Attorney General Eric Holder to appoint a prosecutor to investigate whether there should be further investigations of CIA agents involved in torture, a "sham and a diversion." Listen to the whole piece on LawandDisorder.org.
Thanks to those who donated to World Can't Wait's work in defending Dr. LeRoy Carhart's abortion clinic in Omaha NE last week, after anti-abortion protesters called him "Target #1" in their effort to stop abortion and birth control access. See a fascinating interview with Dr. Carhart in the Kansas City Star, and get a picture of both his determination in the face of murderous threats, and his over-arching compassion and care for women who need abortion.
We came from Chicago, Philadelphia, Denver and New York. Our work helped bring activists from 16 states and D.C. Terry O'Neil, President of the National Organization for Women; Emilie Ailtz of NARAL-Colorado, Kathy Spillar from the Fund for a Feminist Majority. Dr. Suzanne Poppema of Physicians for Reproductive Choice & Health voiced the support of abortion providers around the country.
While the mobilization recieved very positive press coverage and community support, the story is not over, as the state government has responded to the anti-abortion pressure and is launching an "investigation" of Dr. Carhart based on their continual complaints.
This takes me back to point #1 of this newsletter. How can torturers and those who ordered them completely escape even being investigated, and kind, courageous doctors get harassed, investigated, and even killed?
, Director, The World Can't Wait
World Can't Wait mobilizes people living in the United States to stand up and stop war on the world, repression and torture carried out by the US government. We take action, regardless of which political party holds power, to expose the crimes of our government, from war crimes to systematic mass incarceration, and to put humanity and the planet first.