Reformist Muslim

Exploring possibilities for the future of Islam and other thoughts

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Location: London, United Kingdom

Thursday, October 20, 2005

True Wisdom

"The power of the Executive to cast a man into prison without formulating any charge known to the law, and particularly to deny him the judgement of his peers, is in the highest degree odious and is the foundation of all totalitarian government whether Nazi or Communist," - Winston Churchill, November 21, 1943, describing what is now legal and constitutional in the United States, under president Bush.

(from AndrewSullivan.com)

2 Comments:

Blogger Gandalf said...

Nice blog!

But in your quote, Churchill was talking about Brits, not enemy foreigners.

For example, when he made this speech, he'd imprisoned Rodolph Hess in the Tower of London, then transferred him to a POW camp.

Hess didn't get his trial until 1947, and that was not by his peers!

See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rudolph_Hess

As a matter of survival, all societies have limit civil liberties in times of conflict. Like now.

5:03 pm, October 23, 2005  
Blogger reformist_muslim said...

Thanks. I think you make a good point to which I can would say that the quote can serve as something like a reference to the U.S constitution and the rights that that document provides even though some of the founding fathers were themselves slave owners.

Regarding prisoners of war, it is perfectly acceptable to detain them while still engaged in military conflict. The problem with the guantanomo bay detainees though was that they didn't have a military tribunal hearing determining whether they were fighters or innocent bystanders.

As for the British Law Lords case, as I said on your blog there are circumstances where the government may detain people. I think the point there was that the legislation was a very blunt instrument likely to pick up innocent people and not pick up guilty people without any recourse for those accused to defend themselves.

6:30 am, October 25, 2005  

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