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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

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 August 7, 2009 / 17 Menachem-Av 5769

Orders are easy to give, just hard to carry out

By Paul Greenberg




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Harry Truman was said to have been in a philosophical mood — he often was — on leaving the White House as the most unpopular president since Herbert Hoover. It was January of 1953, the country was still at war in Korea, the Cold War could turn hot any minute, the shadow of The Bomb loomed over the planet, the state of the economy was as uncertain as ever, Joe McCarthy remained on the prowl for non-existent Communists in government, which meant the real ones might be overlooked … and Mr. Truman had just turned over the reigns to a retired general named Dwight D. Eisenhower. (The impression that the 1950s were just one long episode of "Happy Days" was always more a product of nostalgia than fact.)


According to one story, HST looked back and, surveying all he was leaving behind for his successor to deal with, said something like: "Poor Ike. He's been in the Army all his life, where you can give an order and it's obeyed. He'll find it's different in the White House. He can give all the orders he wants, and nobody'll pay the slightest attention."


On his first day in the Oval Office last January, our still new president issued an executive order closing down the military prison at Guantanamo, where hundreds of the enemy in this never-ending war on terror (if we're still allowed to call it that) are being held.


With a stroke of his pen, Barack Obama had wiped out years — indeed, centuries — of military law that had once provided the country with a way of dealing with enemy combatants (we may not be allowed to use that term any more, either) through the well-established precedents of military law.


Suddenly gone were the old distinctions between legal and illegal combatants, and the military commissions that had traditionally dealt with both. The new president and commander-in-chief made it clear what he thought should be done with that whole, elaborately constructed legal structure:


Forget it.


The military commissions were canceled, or at least suspended. Guantanamo was to be shut down by presidential order. How simple it had all turned out to be.


Too simple. Just closing Guantanamo was always the easy part. That was the goal of the previous administration, too, which sought to achieve it over the years by releasing, relocating, expatriating and generally diminishing the number of prisoners held there — despite the objections of those who cried Rendition! The now former administration continued to move prisoners out of Gitmo even as some of those released have had to be recaptured on the battlefield or have been caught in new terror plots.


Guantanamo's prison population had been reduced from 775 to 245 by the time Barack Obama took the presidential oath. But those detainees who remained included the hardest cases. And governments in their home countries were proving much too savvy to accept many of these clear and present dangers. Who can blame them?


What is now to be done with terrorists who freely admit their guilt, and even insist on "martyrdom," at least in their public statements and pleadings? Where are they to be held if Gitmo is closed? Or will they be held at all?


Shall the Khalid Sheikh Mohammeds be turned over to ordinary criminal courts in this country as defendants, with all rights and privileges pertaining thereto, at the risk of revealing the sources and methods of our counterterrorist operations in open court?


Shall the government proceed to stage a whole new series of circus trials a la that of Zacarias Moussaoui over the next couple of years or decades? Or should it seek willing executioners abroad? Or just forget the whole thing and hope for the best?


The president gave his answer to all such questions last January: Temporize.


A way to handle these tough cases, he said, would be found by the end of the year. And by now his administration has indeed come up with an answer, or rather a whole, conflicting slew of them. To quote a new story in the Washington Post:


"The administration is looking at transferring some detainees at the military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to a facility in the United States that would contain courtrooms to hold federal criminal trials and military commissions to prosecute terrorism suspects. … Officials said such a facility could also house prisoners held in indefinite detention and those cleared for release but who have no country willing to accept them. Those convicted in federal court or [by] military commissions could serve their terms there."


In short, the more the Obama administration studies the difficulties this president invited when he announced that Guantanamo would be shuttered, the more it comes to adopt the Bush administration's way of dealing with these hard cases.


It'll just be done at a different site — one on the American mainland. (Which ought to make us all sleep more soundly.) Traditional military commissions are back and so is the policy of holding enemy combatants, if by another name, until hostilities are concluded, if they ever are.


To sum up, Gitmo is just being moved ashore.


But there is at least one difference between the way this administration has approached this issue and how its predecessor did. For all the civil liberties its critics claim the Bush-Cheney administration was threatening when it set out to crush al-Qaida at home and abroad in order to prevent another September 11th, it never moved to incorporate a system of preventive detention without trial — the hallmark of every totalitarian regime — into American criminal law.


So there is indeed a big difference between the Obama and Bush administrations' approach to this challenge. And it's a chilling one.

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

JWR contributor Paul Greenberg, editorial page editor of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, has won the Pulitzer Prize for editorial writing. Send your comments by clicking here. Paul Greenberg Archives

© 2006 Tribune Media Services, Inc.

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