Home
In this issue
December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Nov. 19, 2007 / 9 Kislev 5768

Challenges for the new attorney general

By Nat Hentoff


Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Nearly all the media, and definitely most of the Senate Judiciary Committee, overlooked that waterboarding was not the essential issue in the confirmation of Attorney General Michael Mukasey. The real reason he jeopardized his ascension was briefly revealed in his written answers to the committee's questions. Mukasey did not want "our own professional investigators in the field" to be concerned that "any conduct of theirs, past or present, based on authorizations by the Department of Justice, could place them in personal legal jeopardy."


Former and present CIA agents have been worried about being prosecuted if they are charged in the future with, for instance, violating the 1997 U.S. War Crimes Act that criminalizes specifically cited war crimes that this statute characterizes as "grave breaches" of Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions, including not only torture but other forms of "cruel or inhuman treatment."


From Department of Defense documents obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union through the Freedom of Information Act (as well as other sources, including a leaked report by the International Red Cross on treatment of detainees at Guantanamo Bay), it is clear that there have been systemic criminal "grave breaches" in the field, many of them authorized by the Defense and Justice departments — and the president. Does this shock, as one of our laws puts it, the attorney general's conscience?


Those committing such war crimes have been immunized from prior acts by the Military Commissions Act of 2006, and the subsequent presidential executive order on interrogation practices specially immunized the CIA and permitted the continuation of the CIA's secret prisons, known around the world as "black sites."


These practices, though currently immunized according to the president's wishes, not only violate several of our statutes and international treaties we have signed, but emphatically extract from our rule of law its foundation: due process.

Donate to JWR


Despite the protestations Mukasey made on his commitment to our rule of law, he wrote in the Wall Street Journal, before being nominated, that "current institutions and statutes are not well-suited to even the limited task of supplementing what became after Sept. 11, 2001, principally a military effort to combat Islamic terrorism."


It is dismaying that a majority of the Senate Judiciary Committee and the Senate as a whole voted to confirm as our chief law enforcement officer a person who finds "our current institutions" inadequate in this indeterminate war against terrorists who have utter, homicidal contempt for those institutions.


Since Mukasey may well continue as attorney general if Rudy Giuliani becomes our next president, it would be wise to watch, during the remainder of George W. Bush's term, the extent to which our new attorney general considers certain sections of the Constitution, which he vows to protect, as being inadequate.


In a series of previous scrupulously documented articles in The New Yorker magazine — including references to the International Red Cross report on Guantanamo practices "verging on torture" — Jane Mayer has raised what have now become challenges to the new attorney general on what exceptions to our rule of law he finds necessary in order to combat what he accurately describes as "Islamic terrorism."


On National Public Radio, Mayer distilled what her continuing, unrebutted research has shown about the CIA's "enhanced interrogation techniques" authorized by the president. Apart from waterboarding, does Mukasey have any qualms, as he presides over the administration of American justice, about Mayer's and others' revelations of:


"a top-down, controlled ... regimented program of abuse that was signed off — at the White House — and then implemented at the CIA from the top levels all the way down ... They would put people naked for up to 40 days in cells where they were deprived of any kind of light. They would cut them off from any sense of what time it was ... anything that would give them a sense of where they were."


Well, Mukasey's predecessor, Alberto Gonzales, said that sections of the Geneva Conventions are not relevant after Sept. 11.


Also, just before Mukasey's confirmation hearing, The New York Times reported on two secret Justice Department memos in 2005, one of which declared that congressional legislation prohibiting cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment of detainees did not include the CIA's interrogation methods.


Now that he's in charge of the Justice Department, will Mukasey repudiate that rather breathtaking exculpation? And does he find the congressional and presidential immunization of committers of war crimes, not only by the CIA, as meeting his standards of American justice?

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.


Nat Hentoff is a nationally renowned authority on the First Amendment and the Bill of Rights and author of several books, including his current work, "The War on the Bill of Rights and the Gathering Resistance". Comment by clicking here.

Nat Hentoff Archives

© 2006, NEA

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles