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View Diary: [UPDATED] U.S. Citizen "Ghost Detainee" Accused of Bush Assassination Plot, But ... (127 comments)

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  •  There Is An Opportunity Here (none)
    and I assume that his family will take it - immediately sue Ashcroft, Gonzales, Bush, et al. under Section 1983 for violation of his civil rights under color of state law.  They have the legal grounds, and it would change the msm frame, or at least provide an alternative frame.  I would think it would get some play, particularly if the msm picked up on the details of the torture, if he did some TV interviews (picture Katie Couric looking tearily at young valedictorian as he describes the pain of having his fingernails pulled out one by one).  He has the benefit of prior international attention, a media-savvy family, and good legal representation -- Jose Padilla had none of these.
    Where the heck is the Padilla case anyway?  I thought he was supposed to have had a habeas hearing by now.  He still seems to be locked up in the Star Chamber.

      So far, the courts still respect the law, and even most Republican-appointed judges have been slapping down Bushco's reach for fascist powers -- I was astonished by Scalia's opinion in the Hamdi et al case (where he really stuck up for the principle that this country was founded on the concept of freedom from arbitrary imprisonment by the executive).  It's the only time in my life I ever approved of anything I'd read that was written by Scalia.

     In any event, no evidence procured by torture will be admissible against this kid, unless I missed some major development in the law.  They are going to be forced to let him go.  They'll probably try to strike another of those deals where he "voluntarily" renounces his US citizenship and they get him taken in by a third country (not Saudi Arabia this time, obviously).  They'll do a news dump on a Friday afternoon, quietly so that it fades away, like all of their attempted terrorist prosecutions have when they've actually been forced to go to trial.  If the kid has some guts, he'll refuse the deal and make them suffer the legal consequences (and I pray PR consequences) of their own evil.

    •  Technical Legal Quibble. (none)
      Technically, I think you can only sue officials of state and local governments under section 1983.  However, the Supreme Court established Bivens actions to be used for similar misdeeds by federal officials, and I believe the courts have made it clear that the standards for both kinds of actions are essentially the same.

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