Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Attorney General Michael Mukasey Demands A New Congressional Declaration Of War -- ACLU Fights Back But Will They Be Successful?

New Declaration of War, Torture Cover-up‏
From: Anthony D. Romero, ACLU (
Sent: Wed 7/30/08 1:13 PM

Dear ACLU Supporter,

A few days ago, we alerted you to Attorney General Michael Mukasey’s demand that Congress issue a new declaration of war. This would make the entire globe -- including the United States itself -- a “battlefield” where the president gets to decide who is an “enemy combatant” and lock that person up forever.

The Bush/Mukasey plan also includes a congressionally-approved subversion of the Constitution and a cover-up of the Bush administration’s systemic torture and abuse of detainees.

At the same time, an ACLU lawsuit has uncovered new evidence that the torture and abuse Mukasey wants Congress to cover up was authorized by -- you guessed it -- the Justice Department. One of the documents obtained by the ACLU is a redacted version of a previously undisclosed 2002 Justice Department opinion that authorizes the CIA to use specific interrogation methods, including waterboarding.

Now, Mukasey -- as head of the Justice Department -- wants Congress to cover up torture committed under the watch of his predecessor, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. It’s outrageous!

Don’t let it happen. Read the alert I’ve attached below and take action now at:

Anthony D. Romero
Executive Director

ACLU Statement:

"I urge you to reject Attorney General Michael Mukasey's request that Congress issue a new declaration of war and subvert the Constitution. The Attorney General is asking Congress for a law that covers up torture and abuse under the guise of protecting "sources and methods." He is also asking Congress to authorize indefinite detention with a new declaration of armed conflict: a new, worldwide war without end.

With the House Judiciary Committee investigating whether torture crimes were committed by the Bush administration, it is no surprise that Mukasey and the Bush administration are pushing this legislation as a diversion. However, I will be shocked if Congress falls for this power grab, and I urge you to reject it.

The Courts have a long history of considering habeas petitions and of handling national security matters, including classified information. As Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid pointed out, "The courts are well equipped to handle this situation, and there is no danger that any detainee will be released in the meantime.

Again, please let the courts do their job and take consideration of the Bush/Mukasey request that Congress subvert the Constitution -- and have a new, worldwide declaration of war -- off the table."
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