Thursday, July 30, 2009

Protecting the "Rights" of Convicted Foreign Terrorists

Richard Reid, British citizen and Al Qaeda member, is serving a life sentence in a U.S. prison for attempting to blow up an airliner. He was imprisoned under a set of special rules called, "Special Administrative Measures (SAMs)," which are

security directives, renewable yearly, issued by the attorney general when “there is a substantial risk that a prisoner’s communications, correspondence or contacts with persons could result in death or serious bodily injury” to others.
Reid sued to have these removed, claiming that "SAMs violated his First Amendment right of free speech and free exercise of religion." Naturally his lawsuit is supported by useful idiot organizations like the ACLU & the Center for Constitutional Rights, which are working diligently on behalf of foreign terrorist enemies of the U.S. Lest anyone think that's an unfair comment,
In January, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Colorado issued a statement saying that conditions at supermax are “simply another form of torture” worse than Gitmo which “make a mockery of ‘innocent until proven guilty.’” Last month, the ACLU filed a civil lawsuit mirroring Reid’s religious rights claim on behalf of two terrorism inmates held at the Communications Management Unit inside a medium security prison in Terre Haute, Ind.

Instead of protecting the rights of Americans, they are working to assist our enemies. These are not mere suspects, but actual convicted terrorists. Which side are they on?

Back to the Reid and the lawsuit. Without even waiting for legal action to run its course, the spineless Obama Justice Department caved in to Reid's demands after he went on a 58 day hunger strike. The SAMs have been removed. This is yet another illustration of why the idiocy of terrorist rights supporters is so dangerous to the country. It's not enough for them to claim that suspected foreign terrorists have "rights" that need to be respected. Now they want to protect the supposed rights of even convicted terrorists, and argue that reasonable prison restrictions amount to "torture."

Richard Reid is not a U.S. citizen. He is a confirmed member of Al Qaeda and has been convicted of an attempted act of terrorism. He has, or should have no rights whatsoever. Any lawsuits filed on his behalf should be rejected out of hand, and the lawyers censured for wasting the court's time. And rather than caving in to demands as a result of a hunger strike, Reid should have been encouraged to starve himself to death -- saving the U.S. the cost of his continued imprisonment.


Commenter erikm has pointed out that the op-ed used the quote from the ACLU of Colorado in a misleading fashion. That quote is an ACLU objection to the transfer of terrorist suspects from Guantanamo to Supermax facilities, and not a comment on the Richard Reid situation. On the other hand, I stand by my contention that the ACLU is acting as a useful idiot organization for our enemies. Unlike many on the right, I appreciate the necessity and usefulness of the ACLU to protect the rights of Americans, particularly those who have no other recourse or people to speak for them. But the ACLU's stated mission to "defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties that the Constitution and laws of the United States guarantee everyone in this country," has been perverted into an attempt to extend U.S. constitutional rights to foreign terrorist enemies -- the harm of which threatens and diminishes their other good work.


  1. in the name of civil discussion, here's the full statement from which the "make a mockery" quote was pulled. The whole point is that Supermax prisoners like Reid HAVE been convicted in a court of law, unlike the Gitmo detainees.

  2. Thanks, it makes more sense in that context, and the op-ed author's use of that quote is misleading.

    I'll post an update.