John Yoo: Making sure he remains a parody of himself.

Nob Akimoto

Nob Akimoto is a policy analyst and part-time dungeon master. When not talking endlessly about matters of public policy, he is a dungeon master on the NWN World of Avlis

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4 Responses

  1. BlaiseP says:

    Great stuff, Nob. I only saw bits of the Brennan hearings: what did you make of his responses?

    Maybe I’m just projecting here but Brennan seems like just the guy to take on this issue. It’s an evolving problem, one we’ve always faced in warmaking: who constitutes a lawful target? It’s an oxymoron. Aquinas and jus in bello notwithstanding, where war is, law is absent.

    UCMJ law applies to our troops. They’re not protected by the Bill of Rights. Trying to insert a civilian judge into warmaking is an exceedingly bad idea: such a move will only blur the lines between civilian and military. Let history show such a blurring has always led to tyranny. It’s the hallmark of both fascism and communism in their worst incarnations, that they blurred that line. I do NOT want civilian judges lending their imprimatur to military targets. Let Congress provide oversight, that’s their role.

    Look at the botch we made of the Nuremburg Trials and denazification. Look at the CIA’s long involvement in overthrowing duly elected regimes. Civilians have no business in warmaking. The worst evils arise from the best of intentions.Report

    • Nob Akimoto in reply to BlaiseP says:

      I’m increasingly convinced John Brennan is the right man for the job of setting up a proper legal regime for a difficult subject.

      I think the general line taken by Andrew Kent is probably right, that the Administration IS doing a difficult job in a better way than might be conducted otherwise. The question is whether norms can be nailed down and properly placed. It’ll be a tough question. Keeping public pressure up is a good thing.Report

      • BlaiseP in reply to Nob Akimoto says:

        The Geneva Conventions need to be revisited and updated for our times. Personally, I favour an approach which begins with the assertion that unprovoked war is a crime against persons. Naturally nobody will consider his own side the provoker, which would lead the actors to a long public fight for legitimacy.

        There’s a story told of Adolf Hitler following his Panzers through still-burning villages, bodies strewn everywhere. Hitler, a veteran of the trenches, was moved to tears saying over and over “If only they had not opposed me!” The world stood by as Hitler waged war on defenceless people. The same feckless actors stood by as Yugoslavia descended into tribal madness, picking their noses and avoiding responsibility.

        Inter arma silent leges == in time of war the law is silent. If these terrorist types had a route to legitimacy by other means, we might see less violence. But none of this will ever happen, not while non-state actors such as Lashkar-e-Taiba serve as deniable proxies for state actors. There’s the legal linchpin, Nob. The USA has used such proxies, too. Put an end to that phenomenon and the fire goes out.Report

  2. Mike Schilling says:

    It is a fucking disgrace (sorry, euphemisms won’t do) that my alma mater continues to employ that son of a bitch.Report