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Voice: Good reasons for military tribunals

December 05, 2001

Joseph Perkins scored a direct hit to terrorism during his appearance on PBS' "The News Hour with Jim Lehrer" when he advocated for the president's use of military tribunals. Perkins' column in the San Diego Union-Tribune reinforces and strengthens his argument.

Gen. Washington received from the Continental Congress the ability to charge military foes with military trials, starving British agents and sympathizers of vital information that would be revealed in a public court. U.S. News and World Report published an article several years back about fuel-laden commercial aircraft doing exactly what happened on Sept. 11. The source of the periodical's information? The public trial of terrorists charged with the World Trade Center bomb detonated in its underground parking garage!

Opponents of military tribunals, including the American Civil Liberties Union, have argued that without a declaration of war by the United States Congress there is no basis for President Bush to use the military courts against terrorists. This is part of the play-nice philosophy espoused by egalitarian-elitist liberals, including Clintonians, who suckle at the breast of America's ivory tower of higher education, media and social circles; "let us seek avenues of similarities and common ground for agreement," goes their creed.


The argument by opponents of military tribunals is that no right of appeal is availed and, therefore, is unconstitutional because the president may grant pardons — remember the Clintonian 11th-hour pardon of fugitive white-collar criminal March Rich?

The tree of liberty is fragile and must be protected from manmade diseases, famine and attack by totalitarianism — military tribunals are a part of the arsenal of democracy that U.S. presidents may use to target those seeking its destruction.

A piece of paper signed by Congress declaring war on terrorism separates legality from American unfairness in court? Ridiculous!


El Centro

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