Obama was a big ol' candidate for change, and a big supporter of habeas corpus, wasn't he? In addition to those videos, here are some additional situations, where he discussed civil liberties and habeas corpus here, here, here, and here is McCain discussing a back and forth with Obama.
And back in June, Obama said this:
"Today's Supreme Court decision ensures that we can protect our nation and bring terrorists to justice, while also protecting our core values. The Court's decision is a rejection of the Bush Administration's attempt to create a legal black hole at Guantanamo - yet another failed policy supported by John McCain. This is an important step toward reestablishing our credibility as a nation committed to the rule of law, and rejecting a false choice between fighting terrorism and respecting habeas corpus. Our courts have employed habeas corpus with rigor and fairness for more than two centuries, and we must continue to do so as we defend the freedom that violent extremists seek to destroy."But, apparently that was all campaign rhetoric, because today the New York Times reported that Obama the President is set to appeal a ruling that would allow prisoners in Afghanistan to file lawsuits seeking their release.
"The Obama administration said Friday that it would appeal a district court ruling that granted some military prisoners in Afghanistan the right to file lawsuits seeking their release. The decision signaled that the administration was not backing down in its effort to maintain the power to imprison terrorism suspects for extended periods without judicial oversight.This is a perfect summation from Salon.com, by Glenn Greenwald:
In a court filing, the Justice Department also asked District Judge John D. Bates not to proceed with the habeas-corpus cases of three detainees at Bagram Air Base outside Kabul, Afghanistan. Judge Bates ruled last week that the three — each of whom says he was seized outside of Afghanistan — could challenge their detention in court.
Tina Foster, the executive director of the International Justice Network, which is representing the detainees, condemned the decision in a statement.
“Though he has made many promises regarding the need for our country to rejoin the world community of nations, by filing this appeal, President Obama has taken on the defense of one of the Bush administration’s unlawful policies founded on nothing more than the idea that might makes right,” she said."
So that Barack Obama -- the one trying to convince Democrats to make him their nominee and then their President -- said that abducting people and imprisoning them without charges was (a) un-American; (b) tyrannical; (c) unnecessary to fight Terrorism; (d) a potent means for stoking anti-Americanism and fueling Terrorism; (e) a means of endangering captured American troops, Americans traveling abroad and Americans generally; and (f) a violent betrayal of core, centuries-old Western principles of justice. But today's Barack Obama, safely ensconced in the White House, fights tooth and nail to preserve his power to do exactly that.Obama the candidate spent months, YEARS, trashing the Bush administration for their policies, and is yet again, embracing them. What was that change all about, really?
In this video from This Week, George plays Obama a sound bite of Dick Cheney saying that Obama before he starts to implement his campaign rhetoric, needs to site down and find out precisely what it is [they] did...because it would be a tragedy to throw over all those policies simply because he had campaigned against them.
Wouldn't it be better to have an idea about the national security BEFORE you hit the campaign trail, and promise all kinds of things to your supporters?
I mean, heck, Hillary could have campaigned on the promise that she would give every American a new puppy, a million dollars, and a new car, and she would sitting in the White House right now....
Glenn Greenwald finishes his article (it's a great piece, and contains a lot of info) with this comment:
To recap: Obama files a brief saying he agrees in full with the Bush/Cheney position. He's arguing that the President has the power to abduct, transport and imprison people in Bagram indefinitely with no charges of any kind. He's telling courts that they have no authority to "second-guess" his decisions when it comes to war powers. But this is all totally different than what Bush did, and anyone who says otherwise is a reckless, ill-motivated hysteric who just wants to sell books and get on TV.We are definitely living in bizarro land.