Friday, May 22, 2009

Fundamental Values Against Fundamentalist Terror

Tomorrow the German consitution, and the Federal Republic itself, celebrate their 60th birthday. The postwar German constitution, substantially modeled on American principles, opens with a list of human and civil rights, the first: Human dignity is inviolable. All others derive from that simple right and guarantee. They form the unalterable section of the German constitution.

The US Constitution, 220 years old, concludes, in the first ten amendments, with the list of rights constitutive of the republic, already includes in the text itself, however, the principles and institutions of justice, essential to the division and balance of powers with the legislative and executive branches. Yes, this is all to protect the people.

Barack Obama's speech on these principles and the danger, the insecurity for the American people and the entire world resultant from the violation of those principles, is an essential lesson on the rule of law and due process.

There is no protection against terrorism possible that contradicts the very freedoms, principles, justice, and democratic institutions that the terrorists themselves seek to overturn!

Security through elimination of principles of justice and human rights is the greatest insecurity imaginable!

Therefore, I must applaud Mr. Obama's speech and, once more, again point out what misguided dangerous ideas Cheney is fomenting in the mere attempt to avoid being prosecuted for illegal actions himself!


Here the link to the text of Mr. Obama's speech on May 21 and below the video of that speech, held in the presence of the original copy of the Constitution in the National Archives.

The Washington Post video, link here, of the two speeches cut into "replies" to each other makes amply clear how determined Mr. Cheney is to torture some and endanger many out of a distaste for liberty and justice and a love of "security" cost it what it may, while Mr. Obama is determined to combat the enemies of democratic principles of justice and liberties while upholding those very same values. The first is more populist, perhaps easier at first, more dangerous for the world in the end; the latter is the more difficult and the more honorable method of securing the nation and the world.

Clearly, the world is a safer place today than it was a year ago, simply because the playpen has been closed down. With the closure of each aspect of its legacy, the world will become safer yet and the light of freedom and justice may indeed again be able to attract others to the cause.

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