The United States government is still fighting for the right to indefinitely detain and imprison its own citizens without charge or trial. Despite the hard work of a handful of brave journalists, academics and activists, who successfully sued the Obama administration to block this terrifying provision proposed in the National Defense Authorization Act, this month the US Justice Department requested a reversal of the federal judge’s previous ruling, which had determined indefinite detention to be unconstitutional.
On the same day that the US government was attempting to crush our civil rights, the lawsuit’s lead plaintiff, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Chris Hedges, and activist filmmaker Michael Moore, participated in a panel discussion in opposition to the NDAA. Here is a most powerful excerpt from Democracy Now, in which Hedges explains the legal similarities between the infamous Bush torture memos and Obama’s white paper leak attempting to justify our government’s secret extrajudicial drone killings of US citizens:
“…so what they’re seeking to do is legally justify, in the same way that Yoo was attempting to legally justify torture, they’re essentially looking for a kind of legal cover. And so I think it’s all connected; it’s all a part of this very rapid descent into a frightening form of corporate totalitarianism, and that is just writ large across the landscape.
And as we go down, and they know we are going down, look, I mean, they, these forces are cannibalistic. Forty percent of the summer Arctic sea ice melts, and here we are literally watching the death throes of the planet, and these corporations, like Shell, look at it as a business opportunity. They know only one word, and that’s more.
They have commodified everything. Human beings are commodities, disposable commodities. The ecosystem is a disposable commodity, and they will, now with no impediments, they will push and push and push…and they’re not going to stop themselves, the formal mechanisms of power are not going to stop them; it’s up to us.”
image via Democracy Now