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Supreme Disgrace
Key Excerpts from Article on Website of New York Times

New York Times, October 12, 2007
Posted: October 19th, 2007

Somehow, the [Supreme Court] could not muster the four votes needed to grant review in the case of an innocent German citizen of Lebanese descent who was kidnapped, detained and tortured in a secret overseas prison as part of the Bush administrations ... anti-terrorism program. The victim, Khaled el-Masri, was denied justice by lower federal courts, which dismissed his civil suit in a reflexive bow to a flimsy government claim that allowing the case to go forward would put national security secrets at risk. Those rulings ... represented a major distortion of the state secrets doctrine, a rule ... that was originally intended to shield specific evidence in a lawsuit filed against the government. It was never designed to dictate dismissal of an entire case before any evidence is produced. The Masri case ... is being actively discussed all over the world. The only place it cannot be discussed, it seems, is in a United States courtroom. In effect, the Supreme Court has granted the government immunity for subjecting Mr. Masri to extraordinary rendition, the morally and legally unsupportable United States practice of transporting foreign nationals to be interrogated in other countries known to use torture and lacking basic legal protections. Its hard to imagine what, at this point, needs to be kept secret, other than the ways in which the administration behaved, ... quite possibly illegally, in the Masri case. The Supreme Court has left an innocent person without any remedy for his wrongful imprisonment and torture. It has ... established [itself] as Supreme Enabler of the Bush administrations efforts to avoid accountability for its actions. These are not accomplishments to be proud of.

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