I’m not a smart man, but THIS is just plain stupid.
the Obama Justice Department has quietly ordered FBI agents to read Miranda rights to high value detainees captured and held at U.S. detention facilities in Afghanistan, according a senior Republican on the House Intelligence Committee. “The administration has decided to change the focus to law enforcement. Here’s the problem. You have foreign fighters who are targeting US troops today – foreign fighters who go to another country to kill Americans. We capture them…and they’re reading them their rights – Mirandizing these foreign fighters,” says Representative Mike Rogers, who recently met with military, intelligence and law enforcement officials on a fact-finding trip to Afghanistan.
Let’s just file this under “Ridiculously Bad Idea.” Why?
Well, for starters, let’s look at what the Miranda Rights actually are:
You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to speak to an attorney, and to have an attorney present during any questioning. If you cannot afford a lawyer, one will be provided for you at government expense.
You have the right to remain silent. This pretty much ends the necessity of taking prisoners, now doesn’t it. If they don’t have to talk to us, then why should we keep them alive? Seems to me there will be more emphasis on the kill portion of Kill/Capture Missions then before.
But this will lead to another problem (not that an excess of bad guys lying around is a problem in my book) and that is actionable intelligence. In war, he who knows the most about the other side wins. I guarantee if our guys get captured, they’re not getting the right to remain silent. They’re getting the right to scream loudly in pain as they are questioned using methods far more harsh than pouring some water on their face. And in return they’ll likely end up on TV as a test subject for the new Jihad Brand Ginsu knives.
Second, “One will be provided for you at government expense” These are folks whose sole goal in life is to kill Americans. Soldiers in the near-term, citizens in the long term. I’ll be damned if a single red cent of any American’s taxes should go to providing the form of legal counsel afforded to the citizens of our way of life. Especially since the reason they’ve been captured is because they’re fighting to eliminate our way of life. Say what you want about taking the moral high road. Fuck these guys.
Finally, just the overall implication of affording enemy combatants the rights of American citizens is going to put a moments hesitation into the mind of a trigger puller. I’m sure they’ll still defend themselves without a moment’s weakness, but what will be the repercussions if they kill someone deems a high value suspect that would have been afforded these rights?
And if the purpose of this action is to be able to place charges on suspects in an American court of law, you have now implicitly tasked the American soldier with the gathering of evidence. There is no one who is going to care about collecting evidence in a war zone. Period. Plus, I really don’t think chalk outlines and yellow tape “Crime Scene – Do Not Cross” are going to go over well in the Khyber Pass. Call it a hunch.
That and there’s not too much evidence left after the 500lb bomb shows up I imagine.
I understand the intent. Transparency in dealing with interrogations. Re-establishing America as a moral compass in handling of detainees. All good ideas.
In this case;however, the execution of a good idea is supremely lacking in judgement and has the potential to put the lives of American troops at risk in order to protect those who wish nothing but ill towards our country.