RANGER AGAINST WAR: Ranger and Fox Agree <

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Ranger and Fox Agree

And some are in the darkness

And the others in the light

But you only see those in the light

Those in the darkness you don't see

--Mack the Knife
, Kurt Weill

Loving you

Isn't the right thing to do ...

You can go your own way

Go your own way

--Go Your Own Way
, Fleetwood Mac

Bush asked critics of Iraq's political progress

to consider the enormity of the task

--AP wire report, "Bush Defends Pace of Progress in Iraq,"
as reported by FOX news
FOX news and Ranger are rarely on the same page. How could the above statement have gotten past the vigilant FOX editors?

Enormity means "1. the quality of passing all moral bounds; excessive wickedness or outrageousness. 2. A monstrous offense or evil; an outrage. An indecency" (freeonlinedictionary.) Surely they meant to impart a sense of the "largeness" of the undertaking, its "enormousness." But who knows? God works in mysterious ways.

To today's topic: how, why and when did the U.S. military get into the civilian justice business?

"The lawyer for a civilian contractor charged with assault said ... that he planned to challenge the American military's jurisdiction over the case.

"The military has accused Alaa Mohammad Ali, an interpreter who holds Canadian and Iraqi citizenship, of stabbing a fellow interpreter with a knife.

"It is the first time that the military has used the expanded legal authority it was given by Congress in 2006 to charge contractors who accompany the armed forces into the field. Experts say the case may emerge as an important test of the military's authority to try civilians (Stabbing in Iraq Tests Military's Authority Over Contractors.)"

If a guy shivs a guy in Iraq, that should be an Iraqi jurisdictional issue, unless the person wielding the knife is a U.S. military member. In that case, the Uniform Code of Military Justice may apply, unless the Iraqi government declares an intention to try the alleged perpetrator.

Iraq is a sovereign nation -- or so we are told -- and to date Ranger is unaware of any Status of Forces Agreements addressing the issue.

"Capt. Clay Compton, a military lawyer assigned to defend Ali, said the decision to charge Ali was not what Congress intended when it sought to crack down on serious abuses by security contractors. He described the case as stemming from nothing more than an altercation among interpreters.

"They want to test out a new American law on somebody who is not even an American," he said."

"Compton argued that there were other jurisdictions where the case might be heard, like Canada or Iraq, where Ali holds citizenship, and that there was no reason for a military trial."

Ranger disagrees with the last statement. The crime was committed in Iraq and was versus an Iraqi citizen by another Iraqi citizen.
Why would the U.S. or Canada claim jurisdiction? There is no legal basis for such a change of venue.

This case is another tempest in a teapot aimed to take our eyes off the ball. Thousands of U.S. citizens are killed in senseless combat and untold Iraqis die weekly. . . and the U.S. focuses on a crummy knife fight?

The only crime that Ranger sees is that of bringing a knife to what could have been a good gun fight.



Blogger The Minstrel Boy said...

a very telling part of the story is that he was accused of stabbing the other translator, not killing him.

i guess linguists know jack about knife fights

Thursday, April 10, 2008 at 11:53:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

the old rule was long , continuous and deep. Obviously the assailant was not too committed to murder. jim

Friday, April 11, 2008 at 9:12:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Rick98C said...

Meanwhile all the crimes perpetrated by Blackwater employees go unremarked.

Friday, April 11, 2008 at 11:56:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

the point i am trying to make is that a trial for a knifing is thea

ter of the absurd,
Blackwater crimes pale to insignificance when weighed against US official actions. We always focus on the little stuff and give GWB a free ride on the biggies.

Saturday, April 12, 2008 at 10:06:00 AM GMT-5  

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