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Saturday, June 16, 2007

Why Lawyers Should Be Shot

Imagine this: in 2004, the CIA came up with a plan to assassinate 11 bomb making terrorists in Iraq. Great, huh? What happened? The CIA General Counsel's office said that such a plan was illegal, and called a halt to it.

Wait - illegal? To kill bomb making terrorists who kill and maim American soldiers? Illegal?

That's is why lawyers should be shot. They are losing this war for us.

Lawyers Versus the Troops

What a scoop buried within David Ignatius's column in the Washington Post the other day: "There may be an unlimited supply of explosives in Iraq, but there is not an unlimited supply of people who know how to wire the detonators," Mr. Ignatius reported. "In 2004, CIA operatives in Iraq believed that they had identified the signatures of 11 bomb makers. They proposed a diabolical — but potentially effective — sabotage program that would have flooded Iraq with booby-trapped detonators designed to explode in the bomb makers' hands. But the CIA general counsel's office said no. The lawyers claimed that the agency lacked authority for such an operation, one source recalled."

It sounds to us like a fine operation with which to have gone ahead. Instances in which the Bush administration is alleged to have exceeded its legal authority in prosecuting the war on terror — such as the NSA wiretapping, or the indefinite detention on American soil of a supposed "enemy combatant" — receive exhaustive press coverage and congressional attention. But cases such as the one recounted by Mr. Ignatius, in which the Bush administration bows to legal niceties in ways that make it more dangerous for American troops and civilians, attract far less scrutiny.

We are in but the early stages of the war against Islamist terror; it is not too late to get moving. If the authority for such an operation is indeed lacking, Congress or the president could move to rectify the situation by legislation or executive order — and they owe it to our GIs to do it, like, yesterday. Using legal pecksniffery as a reason not to act makes the Bush administration look like the Clinton administration, which, as the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States recounted in its report, had the chance to act against Osama bin Laden but repeatedly flinched, in part because of legal concerns.

The CIA "lacks authority" to kill terrorists.

We have really gone downhill. This story is disgusting.

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