Extradite Posada Carriles

The Bush administration offer of protection to Luis Posada Carriles through a low-key, immigration hearing in El Paso, Texas (PWW 9/10-16), ignored by the media, in fact applies the unconstitutional Cuban Adjustment Act to a fugitive from justice.

Because Posada Carriles has been a CIA agent since the late l960s, he understands the double-speak prevalent in far-flung U.S. intelligence operations. For instance, filing for political asylum is more politically correct than filing for citizenship. “Security official” elicits more sympathy than a freedom fighter (mercenary) wanted for international terrorism in a bombing incident killing 73 innocent airline passengers near Barbados, Oct. 6, 1976.

Belonging to a U.S. shadow government that exists to impose extra-legal methods on non-compliant governments, Posada Carriles is another chicken coming home to roost. Apparently, free trade as a neoliberal process for economic interference and intervention in sovereign countries includes career criminals ducking international law for safe haven in lush South Florida environs. To boost U.S. prestige, extradite Posada Carriles to Venezuela. Then release the heroic Cuban Five!

Richard Grassl, Via e-mail

Like a tree

I saw Cindy Sheehan last weekend, which inspired me to write this poem after James Leigh Hunt’s “Jenny Kissed Me.” Cindy gave me big hug after I told her my son-in-law had been killed in 9/11. She is like a big tree.

Cindy Hugged Me
Cindy hugged me when we met.
Standing at the door she held me
Weeping with a sad regret.
She consoled me and upheld me.
Say I’m weepy, say I’m sad,
Say that happiness eludes me.
Say I’m growing old, but add,
Cindy hugged me.

Wright Salisbury, Lexington MA

Fault capitalism

How much more proof do the peoples of the world need to finally realize and admit that American-style Darwinian capitalism is to blame for most of the world’s major problems and that socialism offers pragmatic solutions to most of these?

I hope PWW will systematically study each global world problem, trace its root causes and outline possible solutions that lie in socialism.

The world cannot go on like this much longer before capitalism eats us — alive.

Willard B. Shapira, Minneapolis MN

Scary Silence

Startlingly little has been made of a recent preposterous 4th Circuit Court of Appeals ruling that upheld the president’s asserted authority to waive the constitutional rights of U.S. citizens under certain provisions of the Patriot Act. One would expect a crazy decision like this, fraught with such chilling implications for our liberties, to cause a firestorm of public reaction. But, evidently, we’re not the freedom-loving people we once were assumed to be.

The court decided that U.S. citizens’ rights to due process and habeas corpus, so fundamental to our Republic, are now, in effect, optional at the whim of the president. Currently, at least one citizen, Jose Padilla, has been incarcerated in an indeterminate location for more than three years without any charges having been filed against him. He has been denied bail and any access to his lawyers, family or press. Padilla has been stripped of his “inalienable” rights. The Bush administration says it may keep Padilla locked up for his natural life and insists is justified in doing so under provisions of the Patriot Act, most of which were recently made “permanent” by Congress. The appeals court ruling upheld Bush’s interpretation of this odious legislation.

Uncharacteristically, no member of Congress has yet publicly remarked on this outrage, forcing one to conclude that they have no problem with the court’s decision. So, we are no longer a free people. That is, unless soon-to-be Chief Justice Roberts’ Supreme Court reverses this freedom-crushing decision. But, don’t hold your breath. I’m afraid the dice have already been cast, and they’ve come up snake eyes. Roberts’ committee hearings have now concluded without even a single senator raising any question to him regarding the unjust imprisonment of fellow citizen Jose Padilla.

Cord MacGuire, Boulder CO

Reality time?

When the five Supreme Court justices awarded the presidency to George W. Bush in 2000, his first year was marked with wandering bewilderment. When 9/11 occurred, Bush manipulated this tragic event and breathed life into his fledgling presidency. It is no secret that during the mobilization of U.S. forces, for the purpose of invading Afghanistan and Iraq, the Bush administration claimed to be “an empire and the makers and creators of their own reality.” Years later, with a 38 percent approval rating, the loss of tens of thousands of lives, the cost of war mounting into billions of dollars, the destruction of FEMA, and a shortsightedness towards natural disasters, it may be that the Bush administration is instead being shaped by the reality of the world and American people. It is hard to argue against and manipulate figures, facts and fatalities.

Who can forget the 2004 presidential debates when Bush was asked, “If he had one thing to do over again, what would it be?” He could think of no regrets or no mistakes. A few days ago in response to Hurricane Katrina, President Bush claimed, “To the extent that the federal government didn’t fully do its job right, I take responsibility.” What an earth-shattering statement!

Please continue to write, demonstrate, speak out and keep the pressure on the Bush administration. Perhaps Mr. Bush will also admit to criminal negligence and resign, saving the American people from three more years of disaster.

Bill Wise, Alice TX


It has to be the height of chutzpah or just plain arrogance for George W. Bush to stand before the UN body, as its most celebrated deadbeat, and call upon the world leaders to follow his policy of Manifest Destiny. It’s amazing that the rest of the world body, knowing its feelings of disgust over U.S. hegemony, had the decency, tact and diplomacy (after all, they are diplomats) to sit and listen as the U.S. president spewed out his disingenuous pontification. He surpassed his own arrogance by walking out on another world leader, Hugo Chavez, who won his election — contrary to ours.

Don Sloan MD, New York City NY