Friday, September 23, 2005

Chavez: "We Cannot Accept... Dictatorship in the UN"


This is a transcript of Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez's speech to the UN on September 15, 2005. In it he vows to stand up to the latest act of Bush Administration agression: Dictatorial Control of the United Nations.

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English Translation from

Speech by President Chavez at UN General Assembly, Thursday September 15, 2005

Translated by Néstor Sánchez
(Agencia Bolivaria de Noticias Photo)

Your Excellencies, friends, good afternoon:

The original purpose of this meeting has been completely distorted. The imposed center of debate has been a so-called reform process that overshadows the most urgent issues, what the peoples of the world claim with urgency: the adoption of measures that deal with the real problems that block and sabotage the efforts made by our countries for real development and life.

Five years after the Millennium Summit, the harsh reality is that the great majority of estimated goals- which were very modest indeed- will not be met.

We pretended reducing by half the 842 million hungry people by the year 2015. At the current rate that goal will be achieved by the year 2215. Who in this audience will be there to celebrate it? That is only if the human race is able to survive the destruction that threats our natural environment.

We had claimed the aspiration of achieving universal primary education by the year 2015. At the current rate that goal will be reached after the year 2100. Let us prepare, then, to celebrate it.

Friends of the world, this takes us to a sad conclusion: The United Nations has exhausted its model, and it is not all about reform. The XXI century claims deep changes that will only be possible if a new organization is founded. This UN does not work.

We have to say it. It is the truth.

These transformations – the ones Venezuela is referring to- have, according to us, two phases: The immediate phase and the aspiration phase, a utopia. The first is framed by the agreements that were signed in the old system. We do not run away from them. We even bring concrete proposals in that model for the short term.

But the dream of an ever-lasting world peace, the dream of a world not ashamed by hunger, disease, illiteracy, extreme necessity, needs-apart from roots- to spread its wings to fly. We need to spread our wings and fly.

We are aware of a frightening neoliberal globalization, but there is also the reality of an interconnected world that we have to face not as a problem but as a challenge. We could, on the basis of national realities, exchange knowledge, integrate markets, interconnect, but at the same time we must understand that there are problems that do not have a national solution: radioactive clouds, world oil prices, diseases, warming of the planet or the hole in the ozone layer. These are not domestic problems.

As we stride toward a new United Nations model that includes all of us when they talk about the people, we are bringing four indispensable and urgent reform proposals to this Assembly:

  • the first; the expansion of the Security Council in its permanent categories as well as the non permanent categories, thus allowing new developed and developing countries as new permanent and non permanent categories.
  • The second; we need to assure the necessary improvement of the work methodology in order to increase transparency, not to diminish it.
  • The third; we need to immediately suppress- we have said this repeatedly in Venezuela for the past six years- the veto in the decisions taken by the Security Council, that elitist trace is incompatible with democracy, incompatible with the principles of equality and democracy.
  • And the fourth; we need to strengthen the role of the Secretary General; his/her political functions regarding preventive diplomacy, that role must be consolidated.
The seriousness of all problems calls for deep transformations. Mere reforms are not enough to recover that “we” all the peoples of the world are waiting for. More than just reforms we in Venezuela call for the foundation of a new United Nations, or as the teacher of Simón Bolívar, Simón Rodríguez said: “Either we invent or we err.”

At the Porto Alegre World Social Forum last January different personalities asked for the United Nations to move outside the United States if the repeated violations to international rule of law continue. Today we know that there were never any weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. The people of the United States have always been very rigorous in demanding the truth to their leaders; the people of the world demand the same thing. There were never any weapons of mass destruction; however, Iraq was bombed, occupied and it is still occupied.

All this happened over the United Nations. That is why we propose this Assembly that the United Nations should leave a country that does not respect the resolutions taken by this same Assembly. Some proposals have pointed out to Jerusalem as an international city as an alternative. The proposal is generous enough to propose an answer to the current conflict affecting Palestine. Nonetheless, it may have some characteristics that could make it very difficult to become a reality. That is why we are bringing a proposal made by Simón Bolívar, the great Liberator of the South, in 1815. Bolívar proposed then the creation of an international city that would host the idea of unity.

We believe it is time to think about the creation of an international city with its own sovereignty, with its own strength and morality to represent all nations of the world. Such international city has to balance five centuries of unbalance. The headquarters of the United Nations must be in the South.

Ladies and gentlemen, we are facing an unprecedented energy crisis in which an unstoppable increase of energy is perilously reaching record highs, as well as the incapacity of increase oil supply and the perspective of a decline in the proven reserves of fuel worldwide. Oil is starting to become exhausted.

For the year 2020 the daily demand for oil will be 120 million barrels. Such demand, even without counting future increments- would consume in 20 years what humanity has used up to now. This means that more carbon dioxide will inevitably be increased, thus warming our planet even more.

Hurricane Katrina has been a painful example of the cost of ignoring such realities. The warming of the oceans is the fundamental factor behind the demolishing increase in the strength of the hurricanes we have witnessed in the last years. Let this occasion be an outlet to send our deepest condolences to the people of the United States. Their people are brothers and sisters of all of us in the Americas and the rest of the world.

It is unpractical and unethical to sacrifice the human race by appealing in an insane manner the validity of a socioeconomic model that has a galloping destructive capacity. It would be suicidal to spread it and impose it as an infallible remedy for the evils which are caused precisely by them.

Not too long ago the President of the United States went to an Organization of American States’ meeting to propose Latin America and the Caribbean to increase market-oriented policies, open market policies-that is neoliberalism- when it is precisely the fundamental cause of the great evils and the great tragedies currently suffered by our people. : The neoliberal capitalism, the Washington Consensus. All this has generated is a high degree of misery, inequality and infinite tragedy for all the peoples on his continent.

What we need now more than ever Mr. President is a new international order. Let us recall the United Nations General assembly in its sixth extraordinary session period in 1974, 31 years ago, where a new International Economic Order action plan was adopted, as well as the States Economic Rights and Duties Charter by an overwhelming majority, 120 votes for the motion, 6 against and 10 abstentions.

This was the period when voting was possible at the United Nations. Now it is impossible to vote. Now they approve documents such as this one which I denounce on behalf of Venezuela as null, void and illegitimate. This document was approved violating the current laws of the United Nations. This document is invalid! This document should be discussed; the Venezuelan government will make it public. We cannot accept an open and shameless dictatorship in the United Nations. These matters should be discussed and that is why I petition my colleagues, heads of states and heads of governments, to discuss it.

I just came from a meeting with President Néstor Kirchner and well, I was pulling this document out; this document was handed out five minutes before- and only in English- to our delegation. This document was approved by a dictatorial hammer which I am here denouncing as illegal, null, void and illegitimate.

Hear this, Mr. President: if we accept this, we are indeed lost. Let us turn off the lights, close all doors and windows! That would be unbelievable: us accepting a dictatorship here in this hall.

Now more than ever- we were saying- we need to retake ideas that were left on the road such as the proposal approved at this Assembly in 1974 regarding a New Economic International Order. Article 2 of that text confirms the right of states to nationalizing the property and natural resources that belonged to foreign investors. It also proposed to create cartels of raw material producers. In the Resolution 3021, May, 1974, the Assembly expressed its will to work with utmost urgency in the creation of a New Economic International Order based on- listen carefully, please- “the equity, sovereign equality, interdependence, common interest and cooperation among all states regardless of their economic and social systems, correcting the inequalities and repairing the injustices among developed and developing countries, thus assuring present and future generations, peace, justice and a social and economic development that grows at a sustainable rate.”

The main goal of the New Economic International Order was to modify the old economic order conceived at Breton Woods.

We the people now claim- this is the case of Venezuela- a new international economic order. But it is also urgent a new international political order. Let us not permit that a few countries try to reinterpret the principles of International Law in order to impose new doctrines such as “pre-emptive warfare.” Oh do they threaten us with that pre-emptive war! And what about the “Responsibility to Protect” doctrine? We need to ask ourselves. Who is going to protect us? How are they going to protect us?

I believe one of the countries that require protection is precisely the United States. That was shown painfully with the tragedy caused by Hurricane Katrina; they do not have a government that protects them from the announced nature disasters, if we are going to talk about protecting each other; these are very dangerous concepts that shape imperialism, interventionism as they try to legalize the violation of the national sovereignty. The full respect towards the principles of International Law and the United Nations Charter must be, Mr. President, the keystone for international relations in today’s world and the base for the new order we are currently proposing.

It is urgent to fight, in an efficient manner, international terrorism. Nonetheless, we must not use it as an excuse to launch unjustified military aggressions which violate international law. Such has been the doctrine following September 11. Only a true and close cooperation and the end of the double discourse that some countries of the North apply regarding terrorism, could end this terrible calamity.

In just seven years of Bolivarian Revolution, the people of Venezuela can claim important social and economic advances.

One million four hundred and six thousand Venezuelans learned to read and write. We are 25 million total. And the country will-in a few days- be declared illiteracy-free territory. And three million Venezuelans, who had always been excluded because of poverty, are now part of primary, secondary and higher studies.

Seventeen million Venezuelans-almost 70% of the population- are receiving, and for the first time, universal healthcare, including the medicine, and in a few years, all Venezuelans will have free access to an excellent healthcare service. More thatn a million seven hundred tons of food are channeled to over 12 million people at subsidized prices, almost half the population. One million gets them completely free, as they are in a transition period. More than 700 thousand new jobs have been created, thus reducing unemployment by 9 points. All of this amid internal and external aggressions, including a coup d’etat and an oil industry shutdown organized by Washington. Regardless of the conspiracies, the lies spread by powerful media outlets, and the permanent threat of the empire and its allies, they even call for the assassination of a president. The only country where a person is able to call for the assassination of a head of state is the United States. Such was the case of a Reverend called Pat Robertson, very close to the White House: He called for my assassination and he is a free person. That is international terrorism!

We will fight for Venezuela, for Latin American integration and the world. We reaffirm our infinite faith in humankind. We are thirsty for peace and justice in order to survive as species. Simón Bolívar, founding father of our country and guide of our revolution swore to never allow his hands to be idle or his soul to rest until he had broken the shackles which bound us to the empire. Now is the time to not allow our hands to be idle or our souls to rest until we save humanity.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Bush's hacks

By Derrick Z. Jackson | September 14, 2005

THE SENATE confirmation hearings of John Roberts are in the eye of a perfect storm of American hypocrisy. It is largely assumed that Roberts will be confirmed despite his animus for affirmative action for people of color. In 1981 as a special assistant to Attorney General William French Smith, he wrote that affirmative action ''required the recruiting of inadequately prepared candidates."

Such sentiments will not sink his chances for the high court, not in a nation where affirmative action of inadequately prepared white men is so rampant that we let them manage our two worst disasters.

There is Hurricane Katrina, where Michael Brown resigned this week as the head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Brown had no emergency management experience and did not know that the New Orleans convention center was reeking in squalor, despite media reports.

Days before the resignation, he was kicked out of New Orleans by Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff. That was the unqualified calling the unqualified ''unqualified." The natural-disaster-minded FEMA was rolled into the terrorist-minded Homeland Security two years ago but Chertoff had no experience in emergency management either. When National Public Radio asked Chertoff about CNN reports on conditions at the convention center, he said: ''If you talk to someone and you get a rumor, or you get someone's anecdotal version of something, I think it's dangerous to extrapolate it all over the place. . . . I have not heard a report of thousands of people in the convention center who don't have food and water."

Brown was at FEMA because of the old-boy network. He was hired as a general counsel by fellow Oklahoman and then-FEMA head Joe Allbaugh. Allbaugh had no qualifications for FEMA other than being a chief Bush operative for a decade. Allbaugh hired Brown even though Brown's last major job was an Arabian horse show commissioner.

With such incompetence in place for Katrina, Bush, a self-admitted academic underachiever who was a clear beneficiary of legacy admissions, followed up the stupid comments of his hacks with proclamations worthy of Ripley's Believe It Or Not. Despite years of scientific warnings and newspaper stories about the potentially catastrophic effects of a hurricane, Bush said, ''I don't think anybody anticipated the breach of the levees."

This follows an amazing lack of anticipation over what would happen in Iraq, after an invasion and occupation where the architects were for the most part well-connected white men who never spent one day in combat. They gave no thought to the thousands of Iraqi civilians killed in the invasion or to the nearly 1,900 US soldiers who have died.

There was Vice President Dick ''Five-Deferments" Cheney, who ballyhooed that we would be ''welcomed as liberators" and that the insurgency is in its ''last throes." There was Defense Secretary Donald ''We-Know-Where-the-Weapons-of-Mass-Destruction-Are" Rumsfeld. He flew jets for the Navy but never saw combat. There was former Deputy Defense Secretary Paul ''Wildly-Off-The-Mark" Wolfowitz, who trashed the assessment by the Army's chief of staff that several hundred thousand soldiers would be needed to stabilize Iraq.

Bush's idea of diversity in this affirmative action for no-combat military experts was his African-American former national security adviser, Condoleezza ''Those 16-Words-Are-A-Data-Point" Rice. Rice, now secretary of state, was in the lead of defusing criticism over Bush's discredited claim that Saddam was seeking nuclear weapons material from Africa.

Hardly by coincidence, the top player in the Bush administration who was the most reluctant to go to war was an African-American man who saw combat, former Secretary of State Colin Powell. It was Powell who urged his fellow Republicans at the 2000 Republican national convention to understand the cynicism of African-Americans when ''some in our party miss no opportunity to roundly and loudly condemn affirmative action that helped a few thousand black kids get an education, but you hardly hear a whimper when it's affirmative action for lobbyists who load our federal tax code with preferences for special interests."

Such cynicism is exploding again in America's face. While we are about to have a new chief justice who condemns affirmative action for black and brown kids, affirmative action for privileged white men has led to decisions that have cost this nation and the planet tens of thousands of lives. Of course Bush could not envision the breach of the levees. His form of affirmative action left him with no one of vision to show him the way.

Derrick Z. Jackson's e-mail address is

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

U.S. Schooling Falls Back in Global Ratings

By Ben Feller

The Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The United States is losing ground in education, as peers across the globe zoom by with bigger gains in student achievement and school graduations, a study shows.

Among adults ages 25 to 34, the United States is ninth among industrialized nations in the share of its population that has at least a high-school degree. In the same age group, the United States ranks seventh, with Belgium, in the share of people who hold a college degree.

By both measures, the United States was first in the world as recently as 20 years ago, said Barry McGaw, director of education for the Paris-based Organization for Cooperation and Development. The 30-nation organization develops the yearly rankings as a way for countries to evaluate their education systems and determine whether to change their policies.

McGaw said that the United States remains atop the "knowledge economy," which uses information to produce economic benefits. But, he said, "education's contribution to that economy is weakening, and you ought to be worrying."

The report, released yesterday, bases its conclusions about achievement mainly on international test scores released last December. They show that compared with their peers in Europe, Asia and elsewhere, 15-year-olds in the United States are below average in applying math skills to real-life tasks.

Top performers included Finland, South Korea, the Netherlands, Japan, Canada and Belgium.

A separate international review last year showed U.S. eighth-graders gaining on their peers across the globe in science and math. At the same time, though, fourth-graders here are falling behind others as their test scores remain stagnant, that study found.

"We're not just letting down too many of our students; we're (also) not giving our taxpayers the best return on their investments," said Ray Simon, the deputy education secretary, after the release of the international report. Given what the United States spends on education, its student achievement through high school shows its school system is "clearly inefficient," McGaw said.

In all levels of education, the United States spends $11,152 per student. That's the second highest amount, behind the $11,334 spent by Switzerland.

"The very best schools in the U.S. are extraordinary," McGaw said. "But the big concern in the U.S. is the diversity of quality of institutions — and the fact that expectations haven't been set high enough."

The Bush administration says the 2002 federal law known as the No Child Left Behind Act is fueling higher achievement among all students — particularly poor and minority kids — by holding schools accountable for progress. But the international data, mostly gathered in 2003, are not recent enough to confirm that the law is producing results, McGaw said.

U.S. and Other Member Actions Undercut Proposed UN Reforms

UN Members Undercut Annan's Quest for Reform
By Colum Lynch
The Washington Post

Tuesday 13 September 2005

Bold initiatives not part of 60th-anniversary summit.

United Nations - In March, Secretary General Kofi Annan proposed the most far-reaching changes for the organization since its founding 60 years ago: reorganizing to combat terrorism and poverty, expanding the Security Council beyond the victors of World War II and setting new rules for the preemptive use of military force.

But six months of contentious negotiations by governments have stripped out many of the boldest initiatives, including proposals for creating 10 new Security Council seats. And delegates this week are straining to reach agreement on a far less ambitious package of steps that can be agreed on by some 170 leaders set to arrive in New York on Wednesday for a summit on UN reform.

Some key goals - including the quest for agreement to condemn terrorists who target civilians or to establish a human-rights council that bars membership to rights abusers - will be put off for discussion by the 191-member General Assembly after the summit ends Friday.

"When you get together with 191 countries to agree on substantive issues, it's obvious that you're going to end up with the least common denominator," Mauritius's UN ambassador Jagdish Koonjul said, after quarreling with US negotiators over a proposed provision that would urge world leaders to support the International Criminal Court. "They said they would rather die than allow any reference to the letters ICC."

Annan's manifesto - outlined in a document titled "In Larger Freedom" - was designed to pump new life into multi-lateralism after the US-led invasion in Iraq had highlighted a rift in international relations. But his effort to push through his changes have been hamstrung by corruption scandals that have weakened his authority. UN member governments, meanwhile, have been reluctant to make painful tradeoffs to achieve a bold reorganization of the global body.

Some officials now say that the goals were too grand for an organization whose members remain deeply divided over the nature of the world's problems. "If things collapse it will be because the traffic was too heavy for the road to bear," warned Munir Akram, Pakistan's UN ambassador, who played a pivotal role in blocking the enlargement of the 15-nation Security Council because its regional rival, India, aspired to a permanent seat on it.

This week's summit, which will draw the largest number of world leaders under one roof, was initially intended to review progress on commitments governments made in 2000 to fight grinding poverty and the spread of HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases that disproportionately strike the poor.

The summit's focus shifted following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and the invasion of Iraq. Abdallah Baali, Algeria's UN ambassador, said the summit was intended to strike a "grand bargain" between the world's poorest countries, who expected to get greater commitments of foreign aid, and the United States and other wealthy countries that wanted the United Nations to change its focus to address new security threats, primarily terrorism.

This meeting represents the first major test of US diplomacy at the United Nations since President Bush bypassed the congressional confirmation process last month and installed John R. Bolton as US ambassador through a 17-month recess appointment.

Since his arrival, Bolton has shaken up the negotiations on a document that can be agreed upon by leaders at the summit, introducing more than 750 amendments. The US amendments called for eliminating new pledges of foreign aid to impoverished nations, scrapping provisions that call for action to halt climate change and deleting language urging nuclear powers to make greater progress in dismantling their nuclear arms.

Bolton has since struck a compromise that welcomes decisions by wealthy governments to increase foreign aid levels to 0.7 percent of their gross national products, but which does not say that governments must do so.

A small group of 15 key negotiators appointed by General Assembly President Jean Ping has also reached agreement in principle on provisions that would increase pressure on states to act to halt genocide, ethnic cleansing and other large-scale killings, and that would establish a peace-building commission to manage postwar recoveries. The negotiators have also agreed to condemn terrorism and set up a human rights council, although they would leave it to the General Assembly to later decide how to define terrorism and to work out the composition and mandate of the rights council.

But the negotiations remain deadlocked over several key issues, including provisions designed to hasten the pace of disarmament and halt the transfer of the world's deadliest weapons to terrorists. Negotiations are also stalled over measures aimed at ending trade subsidies by rich countries that hurt poor nations' ability to compete, and that would bring greater accountability and oversight to UN spending.

Bolton sought to dampen expectations that the agreement by world leaders would represent the kind of radical changes first envisioned by Annan. "This is a first step," he told reporters during a break in negotiations. He said the changes under negotiation "are important but I don't think even if they were adopted in full they would result in the kind of cultural revolution that we need in UN management and governance."

"Reform is not a one-night stand," he added. "Reform is forever."

The Bush administration has come under fire from other nations for opposing provisions that it feels would inhibit its ability to defend US interests. The United States has firmly opposed a proposal by Annan to urge the Security Council to adopt a resolution setting guidelines for the use of military force.

The United States also has blocked regulation of small arms and has worked to eliminate references in a summit document to the obligations of nuclear weapons states, under the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

"What you see here is the US carving out of this document any reference to the responsibility to the nuclear weapon states to eliminate their nuclear arsenals," said Daryl Kimball of the Arms Control Association. "And that is going to make it all the more difficult to strengthen an already beleaguered nuclear nonproliferation system because other states are less likely to foreclose their nuclear options if the United States and others continue to pursue theirs."

Human rights and development advocates, meanwhile, say that a number of other countries have quietly sought to undercut the negotiations. "Less than 48 hours from the beginning of the summit there remains real risk that major agreements will be blocked by a small number of countries that seem determined to block the summit's success," said Nicola Reindorp of Oxfam International. "These include Pakistan, Egypt, Iran, Syria, Venezuela and Cuba."

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Indict Jose Padilla

I don't get to say this very often, but The Washington Post and I almost agree on this issue. I don't believe the State should be able to hold an American citizen without charging him/her in any case.

Why won't they charge him? They've trumped up charges on people before. They won't even bother to do that. Could it be that they have no substantial evidence that would result in a conviction? If they have no evidence, then they should let him go.

This has very serious implications for all American Citizens. If you are perceived as an enemy of the state, you can be held indefinitely without even being charged with a crime. Patrick Henry would be outraged!

Jonah Nadir Omowale
"The creative artist has always been a controversial figure
in the politics of nations. Together with the intellectual
and the scholar, he has been generally regarded as a threat
to the establishment."
- Joseph Okpaku, New African Literature and the Arts, 1988

Indict Jose Padilla

Saturday, September 10, 2005; A22

YESTERDAY'S DECISION by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit in the case of alleged enemy combatant Jose Padilla will be played as a big win for the Bush administration. In one sense, it is. A U.S. District Court judge in South Carolina, where Mr. Padilla is locked up, had held that the president has no authority to detain as an enemy combatant a U.S. citizen arrested domestically in a civilian setting -- even if Mr. Padilla was, as the government claims, an al Qaeda operative sent here to conduct terrorist operations. The unanimous decision this week by an ideologically diverse appeals panel wipes out the South Carolina ruling. Congress has authorized the use of force against al Qaeda, it ruled, and the Supreme Court has made clear that this authorization includes the power to detain, as well as to kill, the enemy -- holding enemy soldiers being a traditional part of waging war. If Mr. Padilla really is an al Qaeda operative, the panel concluded, Congress has authorized his detention without formal criminal charges.

In a larger sense, however, the decision changes nothing. The U.S. District Court ruling was a stretch under the Supreme Court's recent decision in the case of Yaser Esam Hamdi -- the other American citizen held as an enemy combatant after Sept. 11 -- so the appeals court's action is no surprise. What's more, it will not be the final word on this subject. The legality of the administration's position will be decided by the Supreme Court. The administration's prospects there remain cloudy at best; a majority of justices have expressed anxiety about the government's position. Even flush from its appeals court victory, the administration cannot be confident of prevailing. There may be times when circumstances require the detention of an American citizen fighting for the other side who, for some reason, cannot be tried in civilian courts. But by continuing to hold Mr. Padilla in this weird legal limbo, the government invites a high court precedent that would deny the president this power.

The government's handling of Mr. Padilla's case has been both bruising to liberty and self-defeating from the outset. The military initially contended that not only could it hold him indefinitely, but also that he could not consult with counsel or get any chance to contest the basis for his detention. When a respected federal judge in New York affirmed the core of the government's position -- that Mr. Padilla could be held as an enemy fighter -- but required that he get to see his lawyer and respond to the allegations against him, the government appealed the ruling all the way to the Supreme Court to force the case to be refiled in South Carolina. At every stage of this case and the other enemy-combatant cases, the government has overplayed its hand. And the courts have rightly grown suspicious.

At this stage, there is no good reason to keep holding Mr. Padilla in a status that raises so many troubling questions and that risks so much. His intelligence value is exhausted, and he would be as disabled from rejoining the fight in a federal prison as in a military brig. Instead of trying its luck before the Supreme Court, the administration ought to seek congressional legislation to regulate such cases. In the immediate term, it should file criminal charges against Mr. Padilla, if it continues to insist he is a dangerous terrorist. Allowing Mr. Padilla a full opportunity to defend himself in a regular criminal proceeding would not only protect liberties, it would avoid another damaging setback for presidential war powers by the high court.