It’s Official: The War Street Journal Declares the USA to be a Battlefield

A war scene

Bill Anderson
April 22, 2013

It did not take long for the editors of the War Street Journal to serve as the media mouthpieces for John McCain and Lindsey Graham:

A row has broken out over whether the Obama Administration is violating the legal due process of Boston terror suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev by not reading him his Miranda rights before questioning. The more relevant question for the safety of the U.S. homeland is why the Administration has declined to designate him as a terrorist enemy combatant.

Lest one thinks that the WSJ is claiming this is an exceptional situation, think again:

The Boston bombing also ought to chasten Senators Rand Paul, Mike Lee and other libertarians who keep insisting that the U.S. homeland is not part of the terror battlefield.

“It’s different overseas than it will be here. It’s different in the battlefield than it will be here,” Mr. Paul told Fox News earlier this year. “Which gets precisely to the argument I have with some other Republicans who say, well, ‘the battlefield is everywhere, there is no limitation.’ President Obama says this. Some members of my party say the battle has no geographic limitations and the laws of war apply. It’s important to know that the law of war that they’re talking about means no due process.”

Boylston Street sure looked like a battlefield on Monday, and so did Watertown on Thursday night. The artificial distinction is Mr. Paul’s focus on geography. The vital distinction for public safety is between common criminals, who deserve due process protections, and enemy combatants at war with the U.S., wherever they are.

We need to understand what these people are saying. Federal law must assume that every inch of continental U.S. soil is a battlefield in which the rules of battle apply and that due process of law goes out the window. A permanent battlefield is not a place where people can enjoy any freedoms at all except for those temporary refuges that come about when government lifts an order for a short time.

As for anything like a free economy, forget it. A nation under permanent martial law — and that is what the WSJ really is advocating — is a nation of drones serving a governmental master.


top of page ^


Indiana, South Carolina both bucking idea of arresting, holding Americans



WASHINGTON – Bills opposing the controversial National Defense Authorization Act have popped up in both the Indiana and South Carolina state legislatures.

The NDAA was harshly criticized by some as unconstitutional due to language in Sections 1021 and 1022 that allows for the indefinite detainment of U.S. citizens without due process.

Both bills would nullify the NDAA in its current form by denying law enforcement or any government official the right to carry out any act of detaining a citizen without due process.

In Indiana, the bill passed through the Corrections and Criminal Law Committee unanimously after testimony from sponsor Sen. Jim Banks and Elkhart County Sherriff Bradley Rodgers.

In South Carolina, the NDAA Nullification Act S.92 passed the Judiciary Committee 16-4. The bill was pre-filed last fall by Sen. Tom Davis who called Sections 1021 and 1022, “a direct threat to the liberty, security and well-being of the people of South Carolina.”

The next step for the bills in each state is to reach the floors of their respective Senates for a vote.

Shortly after the NDAA’s signing a bipartisan team including former Al Gore consultant Naomi Wolf and Ronald Reagan Justice Department official Bruce Fein went to work opposing the provision of the NDAA which allows for the detention of U.S. citizens.

“Journalists aren’t safe. Union leaders aren’t safe. Activists aren’t safe. Liberty is not safe,” Wolf, an author of half a dozen books, said during a conference call to supporters.

People Against the NDAA (PANDA) Indiana Team Leader James Kerner praised Bank’s testimony saying, “I suggest the ACLU, Occupy movement, Tea Party movement and Oath Keepers throw their full support behind Sen. Banks. He should be made a household name like Ron Paul.”

Indiana and South Carolina are not the first states to take up issue with the NDAA. In early 2012, shortly after its signing, the Virginia House of Delegates passed legislation to nullify it 96-4. Arizona passed similar legislation. Numerous other states and local governments are considering similar bills.

“Concerns about NDAA detention provisions transcend political party, ideology, and geography, and representatives in these diverse jurisdictions have stood up to resist an ongoing bipartisan assault on constitutional rights by federal officials,” the committee announced.

While a debate about the scope of the NDAA’s potential abuses continues to distract congressional policymakers, who voted without realizing the law’s terrifying implications, their counterparts in state and local governments are proving more conscientious, proactively acting on their oaths of office to defend the Constitution.”

Groups including the Tenth Amendment Center, The Bill of Rights Defense Committee, The American Civil Liberties Union and Demand Progress have all been working since early 2012 to oppose the NDAA.

The detainment portion of Section 1021 of the NDAA is not the only part that has come under scrutiny over its constitutionality. Federal District Judge Katherine B. Forrest ruled last year that Section 1021 was facially unconstitutional because it had the potential to violate the 1st Amendment.

A group of journalists and activists had sued President Obama, Leon Panetta and a host of other government officials stating that they were forced to curtail some of their reporting and activism due to fear of violating the NDAA. Among the individuals were Pulitzer Prize-winning former New York Times foreign correspondent Chris Hedges, MIT linguist Noam Chomsky and “Pentagon Papers” activist Daniel Ellsberg.


top of page ^