Thursday, February 04, 2010

World's Most Expensive Show Trial Hits Snag

The world's - indeed history's - most expensive (by far) show trial hit a snag a few days ago. Obama and his "team" wanted to make a display of American righteousness with a show trial of "self-professed 9/11 mastermind" Khalid Sheikh Mohammed "and four codefendants." (This is the obligatory way they are identified in ALL U.S. media accounts. On some matters, the U.S. corporate media is as slavishly conformist and hews in lockstep fashion to propaganda tropes as the Chinese media.) After years in U.S. dungeons, where they were subjected to torture- the U.S. media openly admits, without any embarrassment, let alone shame, that Mohammed was waterboarded- that is, subjected to drowning - 187 times- we are now being treated to a demonstration of the fairness and justice of the U.S. legal system.

The public is supposed to be mentally numb, like the populace in George Orwell's 1984, to glaring contradictions, such as the "right" to a speedy trial, and the presumption of innocence, blatantly violated in this case. (Just one example of the latter: David Axelrod, Obama's main political consiglieri, said on TV that they WILL be convicted and WILL be executed for their "murders." Of course, the entire American public has been convinced of their guilt, so an unbiased jury cannot be impaneled in the U.S. And if ever a case cried out for a change of venue, it's this one. Instead, holding the trial "blocks from the World Trade Center Site," was hailed as a perfect site for vengeance- er, "Justice." Like an old West hanging by a posse.

Don't get me wrong, I think they may be guilty- although we really only have the word of their torturers for that. After years of torture not many "defendants" are going to go back on the agreed upon story.

What a nightmarish, violent police state America has become.

The cost of this political theater was pegged at an incredible $200 million a year, for five years, (what could take so long? The conclusion is foregone) for a total of $1 Billion. For "security,"- i.e. overtime for Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly's thugs, snipers on roofs to make us all feel nice and secure, (snipers glaring down on me alwaysgives me a warm and cozy feeling), and expensive police toys.

The billionaire Mayor Michael Bloomberg hailed it, and snarled dismissively at the plaintive bleats of the local community board objecting to being locked down for 5 years. (In New York City, community boards are utterly powerless bodies that supposedly "represent" neighborhood residents. The real rulers cynically set them up to give citizens a forum to exhaust themselves in ineffectual venting.) But then a funny thing happened: Commissar Kelly briefed the people who matter- the big landlords and other "business leaders"- on the police state hell he was planning on creating. So then these CLASS A citizens complained to their fellow plutocrat Bloomberg, and lo and behold, suddenly Bloomberg said it wasn't so smart to hold the trial in the crowded, congested tip of lower Manhattan, base of various high finance organizations. (He previously spat at the community board chair who'd suggested moving the trial to Governor's Island, calling her suggestion "stupid." One reason the rich love this Profile in Courage is his willingness to tell the proles off.)

So now the Obama regime is squirming. While the media claims lower Manhattan is off as the trial site, officially the regime denies that. And the torture-loving right wing of the U.S. elite insists that a military "commission" (i.e. drumhead proceeding) is all these defendants "deserve."