Aletho News


Gitmo Destroyed Our Constitutional Order

By Jacob G. Hornberger | FFF | April 23, 2019

Sunday’s Washington Post carried an article about the suicide of former Peruvian President Alan García, who Peruvian officials had charged with official corruption while he was in office. The article posited the possibility that García committed suicide because under Peru’s judicial system, he would have faced up to three years in pretrial detention without actually being indicted, which the Post said was “a term unthinkable in many democracies, even for suspects facing overwhelming evidence of the most heinous crimes.”

What the Post did not point out is that indefinite detention without a trial is not unthinkable in the United States. Instead, thanks to the Pentagon and the CIA, indefinite detention has now become a core feature of America’s criminal-justice system. As the Post implies, it is also a hallmark of tyranny.

Among the potential acts of tyranny with which our American ancestors were most concerned was the power of the federal government to keep people in jail indefinitely without a trial. That was why the Constitution, which called into existence a government of limited powers, did not delegate such a power to federal officials. It’s also why the American people enacted the Fifth, Sixth, and Eighth Amendments, which expressly guaranty the rights of trial by jury, a speedy and public trial, bail, and protection from cruel and unusual punishments.

The Pentagon and the CIA destroyed those rights with the establishment of their prison, torture program, and “judicial” center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Today, there are people at Gitmo who have been languishing for more than a decade, denied the benefits of trial by jury, a speedy and public trial, and bail.

This shouldn’t surprise us. In the long sordid history of the U.S. national-security establishment and its infamous regime-change operations in foreign countries, it has always stood for installing dictatorships into power, preferably military ones. By their very nature, military establishments almost always lean conservative, viewing procedural protections as nothing more than “technicalities” that permit guilty people to go free. Thus, the last thing that military regimes are going to do is honor and respect the principles enunciated in the U.S. Bill of Rights.

An example was the U.S.-inspired coup in Chile in 1973, where the regime of military Gen. Augusto Pinochet had his national-security state forces round up some 50,000 people, incarcerate them, rape them, torture them, and murder or disappear around 3,000 of them. No trial by jury. No bail. Fearful of the power of the Chilean national security establishment, the Chilean federal courts went silent, as did the Chilean legislature.

The same thing happened in the CIA’s coup in Guatemala some 20 years before that. The CIA succeeded in ousting the democratically elected president of the country, Jacobo Arbenz, and installed a brutal military general in his stead, who proceeded to round up, torture, and kill people without a trial.

We saw it with Iran, when a CIA coup in 1953 ousted the democratically elected prime minister, Mohammad Mossadegh, and restored the brutal tyranny of the Shah. While the Shah wasn’t a military general, his U.S.-supported rule was every bit as tyrannical as that of any military general. Indefinite detention and torture, without the benefit of a trial, were hallmarks of his brutal rule, which came to an end in 1979 when the Iranian people revolted against it.

We see it today in the military dictatorship in Egypt. Indefinite detention and torture, without trial. All fully supported by the Pentagon, the CIA, and most of the rest of the federal government.

Therefore, it shouldn’t surprise us that the Pentagon and the CIA established this same type of system in Cuba, where the ruling leftist communist regime, ironically enough, engages in indefinite detention and torture without trial as well. In fact, don’t forget that that is why our ancestors demanded that the Bill of Rights be enacted — they were certain that federal officials would do the tyrannical acts proscribed by the Amendments. What the Pentagon and the CIA have done in Cuba is a confirmation of the concerns that motivated Americans to enact the Bill of Rights.

One irony in all this, of course, is that U.S. military officials and CIA officials take an oath to support and defend the U.S. Constitution. But it’s obvious that the oath is nothing more than a lie. After all, the reason that the Pentagon and the CIA established their prison and torture center in Cuba was precisely to avoid the provisions of the Constitution. Their very aim was to establish a Constitution-free zone, one in which they could keep people jailed forever and torture them to their heart’s content and never have to bring them to trial.

It’s a sad and pathetic legacy of the decision after World War II to convert the U.S. government from a limited-government republic to a national-security state, a type of governmental structure that is inherent to totalitarian regimes, one in which government officials wield tyrannical powers. That’s why it’s not enough to close the Pentagon’s and CIA’s imperialist prison and torture center in Cuba. To restore freedom and justice to our land, it’s also necessary to restore a limited-government republic to ensure that this type of dark tyranny never afflicts our nation again.

April 23, 2019 - Posted by | Civil Liberties | , , ,


  1. No matter what the domestic laws are, there are always ways for tyrants to circumvent the legal(and Financial) systems in place that the citizenry are bound by. Guantanamo Bay was crucial in dealing with “The Terrorists” who “committed” the massive crime of “9/11” because it allowed the 19(?) Saudi Arabian terrorists to be “Tried By Media” and all found guilty in the eyes of the American people. Holding them in Gitmo allowed the government to completely avoid the American Legal system and all the evidence which was completely ignored in finding the Saudi’s guilty.
    Imagine the difficulty in holding up the evidence for forensic examination that the American Legal system would demand. Instead they were pronounced guilty without any evidence being examined at all.

    There’s a parallel between the American legal system, and the American Taxation/Financial system as well.
    America’s Uber-Rich are able to route their finances through the numerous TAX HAVENS around the World to avoid their Taxation/Financial obligations to ‘Uncle Sam’. Billions/Trillions of dollars in tax revenue are avoided by this Legalised Theft system, which is out of bounds for working Americans who have to pay tax on every dollar they earn. Hasn’t anyone noticed this BLATANT theft being carried out behind the scenes?
    Why is there NO Public outrage in the USA about the Legal and the Taxation systems, one for the rich and the other for the poor. Certainly the MSM is totally mute in demanding reform.

    The American people are being played for complete ‘suckers’ by the American Government.


    Comment by Brian Harry | April 23, 2019 | Reply

  2. This otherwise decent, wide-ranging article neglects to mention the longest-running indefinite (aka “administrative”) detention (actually, it goes back to British Mandate days, and the always-opportunistic Zionists picked up on it with alacrity) regime on the planet: the Zionist monster so-called Israel’s system of ensuring a constant, “stable” prison population of Illegally Occupied Palestinians. (Back when I was able to keep up, that population averaged, day after day after day, about 8,000 Palestinian men, women and children jailed via “administrative detention” and other kangaroo-court Zionist tricks; there was damned near no Palestinian man who had not been Zio-incarcerated at one time(s) or another in his ‘life’!) Palestinians, even children, can be incarcerated without charge or indication of a hearing, for up to six months…that can then be extended by six months, then another six months, etc. … voila, indefinite. Somewhere in the GITMO plan and execution, slam dunk, was a Zionist operative(s) who took the reality of the Zionization of America seriously and applied it in subversion of any America-first justice, moral et al values. Zionists, of course, have no truck with such “quaint” attributes of an advancing civilization and humanity

    I’m not at all happy with Hornberger’s neglect. Was it deliberate by him? Did his (Zionist?) editors give him marching orders?

    We are all Palestinians now.


    Comment by roberthstiver | April 24, 2019 | Reply

  3. (off topic) recommendation of a new article to post at Aletho: Is Trump an actor buying time for the deep state or a captive who faces high-velocity lead poisoning should he stray from his captors’ dictates?


    Comment by rediscover911com | April 24, 2019 | Reply

  4. Thank you! I had marked the title of the article as a “must read” but hadn’t gotten to it. As great as Phil (always) is, my sensing is that here he has failed to explore and unravel another thread — perhaps the main seam — in the “Deep State” (whatever that truly is) threat to any attempt to extract the US from this ongoing national nightmare. To wit: Phil addresses the “psychopathic trio of John Bolton, Mike Pompeo and Elliott Abrams.” I posit another trio that is rabid, Zionist, neocon, omnipresent…and *nominally* as well as *improbably* anti-Trump: Phil’s mentioned Bill Kristol, Max Boot, and MSM godfather Wolf Blitzer. I use “nominally” and “improbably” because I believe that this trio secretly and gleefully observes that Adelson (and other willing minions…Kushner and his ultra-Orthodox-plus network; Pence and his ‘Christian’ Zionist freaks; and then there is Satanyahu) has/have done the bidding of the Ziomonster so-called “Israel” via invading Jerusalem, starving the Palestinians, telling Syria and the world “eff you” re the Golan Heights, levying war crimes on Iran [plus Venezuela, Cuba], co-opting KSA and any Arab World resistance to colonialism, readying for war on Russia and China (need I go on?–e.g., the “war” on Ilhan Omar?). At the same time, the trio (and any other hangers-on they’ve enlisted to their cause) plays/play out a charade of anti-Trumpism [they *do” have great and justifiable fear Trump in the way of the reality of DJTrump as the uber-egoist bully who could lash out from his pulpit and overturn their USraeli agenda of “full-spectrum dominance” in the service of the Zioentity and global militant/political Zionism]. So this trio treads lightly and vigilantly and craftily as it monitors Trump’s tweets and his actions with wary attention, but the trio carries that proverbial big stick (the “stick” is largely the Benjamins, dear readers), and my primary revulsion is that I don’t like to carry water and hew wood for an ideology and a focused agenda I despise to any greater extent than I’m currently subjected to.

    Well, that’s my gut-level, visceral stab at the status and workings of the geopolitical chessboard, present-day style. I’m not smart enough or resourced sufficiently to flesh out my stab into a full-on sword-thrust of exposure, publicity, education, resistance, and “throwing the bastards out,” but someone(s) has/have to roll the first snowball and hope for the avalanche. I wish Phil, who normally is not hesitant to take on courageously and with great style this particular “thread” — the “threat” to Phil’s Council for the National Interest in which Council we should all be card-carrying members — hereby stitched together broadly by me had, in this very “conspiracy against Trump” context, beat me to it.

    I repeat: We’re all Palestinians now.


    Comment by roberthstiver | April 24, 2019 | Reply

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