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Don't buy the administration's spin on the Christmas day bomber

Am I supposed to feel comforted by the Justice Department's claim that the would-be Christmas Day bomber is cooperating?

Am I supposed to cheer now that Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab is allegedly gabbing like a school girl about others who trained him or trained with him for terrorist missions? Am I supposed to accept the Justice Department's assertion that these developments prove that the administration was right to treat Abdulmutallab as a criminal defendant and not a war criminal?

Well, I'm not clapping, and I'm not buying the Justice Department's spin. What the administration is selling as proof of success is actually evidence of failure.

If you believe the administration's spiel that Abdulmutallab is now providing valuable information, then this means that they didn't fully and effectively interrogate Abdulmutallab more than a month ago when they first apprehended him. It means they were wrong then in arguing that they'd squeezed all of the valuable information they could from someone the president first identified as having acted alone. It means they were wrong to question Abdulmutallab for a mere 50 minutes before they read him his Miranda rights, assigned him a lawyer and essentially invited him to shut up. It means that every day that Abdulmutallab sat mum al Qaeda leaders and operatives were given more time to relocate, acquire new phones or phone numbers, recruit new would-be martyrs. It means that at least some of the allegedly fresh information Abdulmutallab is now handing up may have gone stale.

Ultimately, it means that the administration wasted invaluable time. And if you heard the congressional testimony of top intelligence officials yesterday about the likelihood of future al Qaeda attacks, you'd know that we don't have a lot of time to waste.

By Eva Rodriguez  | February 3, 2010; 12:03 PM ET
Categories:  Rodriguez  | Tags:  Eva Rodriguez  
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Yep, should have water-boarded him until we couldn't tell whether what he was babbling about was true or not.

Posted by: newsraptor | February 3, 2010 12:17 PM | Report abuse

Yup Abdulmutallab, a foreign terrorist, got a lawyer after 1 hour thanks to our Justice Dept and FBI.

An American conservative activist falsely and widely accused of phone tampering a Democratic Senator ? Got his lawyer after 28 hours.

Whats wrong with this picture ?

Posted by: pvilso24 | February 3, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Short version of this column:

"Don't confuse me with the facts. That's cheating and totally unfair in a rational discussion. Excuse me while I go back to covering my ears, shutting my eyes, and ranting. That way I can be sure that real data won't unsettle my world view."

Posted by: fairfaxvoter | February 3, 2010 12:25 PM | Report abuse

An American conservative activist falsely and widely accused of phone tampering a Democratic Senator ? Got his lawyer after 28 hours.

Whats wrong with this picture ?



Mr. O'Keefe is behind bars where he belongs.

Posted by: vigor | February 3, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Torture 'em all! Throw them in dungeons forever! No civilian trials, no military commissions! No sissy "rule of law!" Please, please, Daddy, do ANYTHING YOU HAVE TO DO so I won't be ascared of the bad people...


Posted by: stephenlouis | February 3, 2010 12:31 PM | Report abuse

This column makes sense if what one wants is quantity of information. But if what one wants is quality than it is assuming things which do not seem supported by evidence.

Could we have gotten the same evidence, and faster, had we stuck with military courts and no Miranda rights? Maybe, but there is no evidence presented here to support that idea.

This really does miss the point. People with experience in interrogation say that it is about building relations with the person being interrogated. If the current reports are true, the FBI has succeeded in doing that. To assume that they would have succeeded and done so faster had they questioned him sufficiently aggressively is simply to beg the question.

Posted by: beckerl | February 3, 2010 12:31 PM | Report abuse

World President Obama
will find him guilty
and have him executed.
Just ask him.
I believe he is 'talking'
just like I believe the
ecomony is growing,
and unemployment is
at only 10%.
The Department of Truth
will stop thoughtcrime!

Posted by: simonsays1 | February 3, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

Panic, panic, panic. These comments are just part of America's knee jerk tendency to over-react - and as a consequence, do just what terrorists want us to do.

Posted by: Nrth_Of_The_Border | February 3, 2010 12:39 PM | Report abuse

Could this piece BE any more ignorant of the U.S. Constitution or the principle of the rule of law? The perp was arrested on U.S. soil, and there is positively nothing in the Constitution that says it may be ignored when a Post pundit wants it to be. To argue otherwise, as Rodriguez is doing here, is to ignore the threat of tyranny and to give the terrorists exactly what they want.

The job of a Post pundit--for example, Rodriguez--is not to inform, or to write in good faith. It's to push bogus right-wing talking points.

Posted by: SB98765 | February 3, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

Here's what I'm not listening to anymore: This churlish lecturing neocon, Eva Rodriguez. Even when she makes a point that I agree with--which is itself rare--she still manages to leave the sour taste of obnoxiousness in my mouth.

Posted by: uh_huhh | February 3, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

It is yet another sign of how far our political discourse has fallen that an adherence to the rule of law is dismissed by torture apologists as "spin." Combine that with an unwillingness to see the efficacy of abiding by the rule of law in terms of better intelligence gathering and you get a seriously flawed approach to the war on terror (“The best way to get him to talk was working with his family,” as one official said, a family that would be less likely to cooperate if they assumed their family member was undergoing "enhanced interrogation" and the tried and true "You run to ground what he tells you, validate it and follow up. You build a relationship. It’s a pretty standard process” approach --the quotes come form the NYTimes article, a much better researched piece than the Post's article by the way. Try building a viable relationship with "enhanced interrogation." What you usually get is someone saying whatever it takes -- true or false -- to get the interrogation to stop)

And are you willing to update your post, Ms. Rodriguez, with the information that the (2001) shoe bomber, Richard Reid, was informed of his rights five minutes after he was taken into custody ... and then again two hours later ... and then again three hour later? Your calculated huffy tone, meant to suggest that what the Obama administration is now doing would have been inconceivable under any past (or future) administration shows either an unfortunate historical ignorance or a calculated amnesia common to those set on advancing republican talking points

Posted by: Patroklus | February 3, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Facts. Oh, those nasty facts. Although the writer is, like all the rest of GOP, blinded by hatred and fear, the FACTS are that the DOJ did everything --- everything! --- right in this matter.

The crotchbomber's contacts are already dead, and he continues to spill the beans.

You people are insane with hatred. You would rather see our country ground completely into the dirt that see Obama succeed.

You are ill-informed, full of lies and plain old crappola. Everything Obama is doing is working; everything you guys did has NEVER worked.

Posted by: Casey1 | February 3, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

First to simonsays1: go take your medication.
Second: Ms. Rodriguez, are you mad because we got information the way most law enforcement officials get their information using reliable interrogation techniques? Or are mad because we didn't send him to Gitmo w/o any rights or representation, where he could be waterboarded into giving unreliable information just to make it stop, and then released back to his home country, where he could run stright to the local chapter of al Qaeda, where he could plot the next big attack on American soil? You know, just like we used to in the previous 8 years before Obama?

Posted by: ecglotfelty | February 3, 2010 12:44 PM | Report abuse

When you read Rodriguez drivel you have the feeling that it's Moose killer Palin kind of bull

Posted by: foxblues | February 3, 2010 12:48 PM | Report abuse

Eva Rodriguez, do you have any legal background or experience? It doesn't sound like it. What I'm hearing instead is the same ignorant "get a rope" rhetoric we've been hearing from conservatives for more than a generation.

Try a new tactic, Rodriguez, "get a clue!"

Posted by: jp1954 | February 3, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

So... You would rather torture the guy to get unusable information and show the world we have so little respect for human rights that the everyone would be better off without us ... right? If there is no rule of law, then what he tried to do was perfectly all right, n'est-ce pas?

Posted by: benbury | February 3, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

It would be better if some rational thought went into writing this post but I guess that doesn't happen to often in your world. I guess you think Don't Ask, Don't Tell is right on the money as well.....

Posted by: tojo45 | February 3, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Lets see the same morons who for the last 8 years could have changed the laws on how we handle terrorists decided it was better to point fingers than do the job we elected them to do. That is where the blame solely lies.

Posted by: rharring | February 3, 2010 12:56 PM | Report abuse

Ms Rodrigez

I assume you had a similar sense of outrage when the Bush administration read the Shoe Bomber his Miranda Rights.


Why do you hate America so much?

Posted by: hallj1 | February 3, 2010 12:59 PM | Report abuse

The Saga of Abdulmutallab, Underwear Bomber [Dana M. Perino & Bill Burck]

Just when you think it can’t get worse . .

"Let us make sure we’ve got this straight: The administration last week admitted that the none of the intelligence services was consulted when Abdulmutallab was Mirandized...Some in the administration even claimed that those 50 minutes were enough time to get everything he knew...

Now the administration has begun leaking to the press that he started talking again...

Last week?! So, first of all: How many of his fellow terrorists have rolled up operations since Christmas Day and headed for the hills?

But even worse is that someone in the administration is leaking... How does it further our national-security interests to tell Abdulmutallab’s fellow terrorists overseas that he is informing on them?

If the administration believed it was important to reassure Congress that Abdulmutallab was cooperating, they should have done so in private...This kind of sensitive information is shared all the time in that way. It is bad practice to tell the world that a terrorist has agreed to spill the beans on his fellow terrorists who are still walking around free overseas.

That is, of course, unless the principal motivation is to try to save political hides at home, even at the expense of actually finding the terrorists Abdulmutallab worked with.

Seriously, you can’t make this stuff up.

Maybe time for Obama to throw his Attorney-General under the bus ?

Posted by: pvilso24 | February 3, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Maybe we should have tortured him so he'd stop talking, then torture him some more to see what kind of BS he can come up with.

Posted by: dcp26851 | February 3, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

Ms. Rodriguez,

It comes as no surprise that you do not feel comforted with any success the current administration has on any issue.

You and Bill O'Rielly should have lunch together. You might even get a job on FOX.

Your a perfect fit. A place where anything good that happens for our country must be bent and twisted into something bad.

Posted by: jbryson2 | February 3, 2010 1:12 PM | Report abuse

It is Rodriguez and the Republicans who are spinning this story for political reasons. Now they are mad that the system is working.

Posted by: chickenhead | February 3, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

So... You would rather torture the guy to get unusable information and show the world we have so little respect for human rights that the everyone would be better off without us ... right? If there is no rule of law, then what he tried to do was perfectly all right, n'est-ce pas?

Posted by: benbury | February 3, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse


Benbury if Obama and Holder's thoughts were then to show case the american judicial system by offering this scum civilian trials - they then only undermine that premise when both these idiots appear on the Sunday morning talk shows making comments like " I can assure the American people that they will be found guilty and then ultimately executed"...So what in show casing "Innocent until proven guilty"...These flamers can not have it both ways ...Hmm..Nice showcase...stupid is as stupid does.,

Posted by: short1 | February 3, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Miss Rodriquez is way off base on her assumptions. Just because it has now become "public knowledge" that the Undie-Bomber is providing useful intelligence does not mean that the administration wasted a month of time. They may have gotten this information right away only to now publicize it. What she is implying, but does not have the courage to say, is that the CIA should have donned their black hoods and put him on the rack immediately. I am still amazed that there are Americans still actively supporting the use of torture on individuals, what are we Nazis? To even have this opinion, even after experts in the field have stated numerous times that torturing produces unusable information, is the height of intellectual stupidity.

Posted by: gward1 | February 3, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Conveniently ignores the fact that the Bush/Cheney/Ashcroft Axis of Cowboys read the "Shoe Bomber" (aka Richard Reid) Miranda Rights WITHIN 5 MINUTES of his being taken into Custody...and repeatedly read them to him again over the next several days.

I don't recall your fulminating, foam-at-the mouth reaction when that happened.

Posted by: wiltonsjs | February 3, 2010 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Talk about spin.

Posted by: jckdoors | February 3, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Yes, you would hate to follow the constitution of the United States of America. You would hate to follow the rules of law. Making exception is an excellent idea. After all, he is just a terrorist and not even christian or white.

You will rue the day that the rule of law was exempted to treat terrorists differently than others. It would only take a government official to lable you a terrorist. All of the consequences would then become personal.

Posted by: TJMAN | February 3, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

These comments are a perfect reflection of why nothing gets done anymore - extreme partisanship, petty name-calling, and little in the way of fact. Both sides need to grow up. Post-partisan indeed.

Posted by: koelekanth | February 3, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

US vs. al Qaeda on 12.24.2009. Pressure on al Qaeda is high. We use informants and drones to launch missiles at them in Pakistan, Yemen, Afghanistan and sometimes Somalia. The US and the West are internally divided about the way forward and the best way to attack al Qaeda.

US vs. al Qaeda on 12.25.2009 after a failed attempt to blow up a US airliner. Same as before except al Qaeda gets some good recruiting and fund raising material. Meanwhile the division inside the US increases as we play "what if" games over some loser with flammable diapers.

US vs. al Qaeda on 12.25.2009 after a successful bombing of a US airliner. The pressure on al Qaeda ratchets up. The day before a US commander needed 99% id on a suspect and 5% chance of collateral damage before launching a missile from a drone. Know he needs 80% id on a suspect and screw the collateral damage. Independents throw their support behind the President and conservatives tone their criticism down. Sympathy for the US is running higher in Europe and European police forces make sweeps through their predominately Muslim slums.

A guy with no real record and a US visa showed up in Yemen one day wanting to be a bomber. The local terrorist masterminds said give him some diapers and let him burn himself. He has no useful information. The plan was a 100% success.

Posted by: caribis | February 3, 2010 1:27 PM | Report abuse

I think the fact that FBI has proven to be much, much better at getting useful information out of suspects than the CIA would be a point in favor of the Adminstration's plan.

No reasonable authority believes you can get more than a few names or dates by torture. Real intelligences requires cooperation, and torture ensure you will never get it. Its really a desire to get REVENGE which is motivating those supporting torture, because all the evidence is that torture has made us less safe, but lets review.
1. FBI got majority of useful information through legal means, even from those later tortured.
2. Torture is a great recruiting tool for our opponents.
3. Torture, which includes water boarding and stress positions is absolutely illegal under US and international law, and has been for decades.
4. Torture or other mistreatment will make a terrorist out of some one who wasn't one, and the majority of those we suspect have turned out not to be terrorists.

Posted by: Muddy_Buddy_2000 | February 3, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

I just read today that that "Christmas Day" bomber's mother was flown in to speak with him.

I'm sure you've heard the saying "there's more than one way to skin a cat".

Posted by: avahome | February 3, 2010 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Read what Isreali interogators (some of the world's best) have to say about getting information out of suspected terrorists. It's not through military tribunals or waterboarding. It's alot more along the lines followed by our experienced FBI interogators. Developing rapport with the suspect and even bringing in his family is right in line with that approach. At least Obama is not asleep at the wheel like Bush and Cheney who continued their vacations in August rather than read their own security report about airliners being used as flying bombs. Want to dismantle some spin Mr Rodriquez? Start there.

Posted by: Poleman | February 3, 2010 1:31 PM | Report abuse

BTW the second this guy was sent on this mission all his high level contacts (if any) got new phones and locations if he knew them. Even if Al Q is so poorly run that they did hide before the man got on the plane, only the insane believe that they did not do so the second the plane failed to explode.
The people that claim that any member of Al Q that did not want to be caught did not run the moment it was released that this man was alive is simply lying, since no one is that insane.

Posted by: Muddy_Buddy_2000 | February 3, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

What a ridiculous article!

Posted by: angie12106 | February 3, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

I will take death by terrorist as long as I am free to speak, confront my accusers, retain privacy and property and any other Constitutional liberties afforded by "We the People".

Patrick Henry said it best, but I suppose if cowardice runs stronger than courage in the hearts of our people, we don't really deserve the rights we hold so dear.

When we torture we use the cowardly tactics of those who attack us. Better to die free than to live in fear. What a coward!

Posted by: ripper368 | February 3, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

This gets published in the Washington Post? Agree or disagree, this column, article, blog post or whatever it is is terrible. It makes vast assumptions unsupported by fact or even argument. How about some journalistic standards.

Posted by: jsd1221 | February 3, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Ms Rodriguez:
I am sorry that you have been so berated by the bloggers on this site who are apparently more inteliigent and better informed than you. I mean really they are not elitists they are just smater than you and anyone like myself who agrees with you. What they fail to recognize is that actionable intelligence is a perishable thing and enemy combatants do not qualify for constitutional protections. Thanks for your article.

Posted by: thegriffer | February 3, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

If it's ok to disregard our laws some of the time what's to stop the government from eventually doing it to it's own people?

This is just another partisan hack job trying to change the previous administrations legacy. I wouldn't be surprised if she was cashing checks for Cheney or Bush.

Posted by: whatdyousay | February 3, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

When President Obama said in the State of the Union addreess he supported changing the "Don't ask. Don't tell" policy, I was hoping he was referring to his terrorist interrogation policy.

Posted by: jfv123 | February 3, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

HA! SPIN? What in God's name do you think you've just written???

Posted by: trident420 | February 3, 2010 2:03 PM | Report abuse

Typical neocon fearmongering. Why is it that conservatives only respect the constitution and the laws we live under when it suits their ideology? The primary ruling philosophy of the previous administration was to generate as much fear and doubt in the public as possible so they could consolidate power in the executive branch and ignore the consitutional rights that we've thrived under for 234 years. Why do some people continue to cower in fear everytime some assclown lights his pants on fire?

There will always be threats to the country, external and internal. We need a rational, legal, and ethical approach, not an illogical, knee-jerk reactionary approach.

Neocons like this should be either ignored or challenged on their faulty illogical reasoning every time they open their mouths. When is the last time Dick (or Liz) Cheney made a public statement that was not intended to invoke the fear of some mythical bogeyman trying to destroy the country - have they never looked in the mirror and contemplated the results of their failed philosophy over the past 10 years?

Neocons are a cowardly and ignorant collection of hypocrites. They are marginalized and their misguided policies have weakened our nation and cost the country the moral standing and respect we once commanded (and deserved). They are consistently on the wrong side of every major public policy issue and should be embarrassed at the failure of their "movement".

Posted by: ABHFGTY | February 3, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

Wow, the comments from thegriffer are truly scary. Hello? Did you read the rest of the comments pointing out that Bush/Cheney/Ashcroft read the Shoe Bomber his rights 5 MINUTES AFTER HE WAS TAKEN INTO CUSTODY? Please stop drinking the Kool Aid!

Posted by: wiltonsjs | February 3, 2010 2:05 PM | Report abuse

You can interrogate and get good infomation.

You can torture and get good information.

Just like you can cut someone and make them better.... it basically only matters who is cutting.

To you simpleton experts, who think you know everything:

Torture works when done by experts.

Posted by: docwhocuts | February 3, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

And don't buy Rodriquez's spin either. Abdulmutallab is not a high level operative. What he can tell us is not when the next attack will take place, but he provides bits and pieces of intel that substantiate or repudiate what we already know.

Hyperventilating and panic helps nothing.

Posted by: arancia12 | February 3, 2010 2:16 PM | Report abuse

"Ultimately, it means that the administration wasted invaluable time."

Really? By following the rule of law under the US Constitution? Who is this person and why are they being granted legitimacy by the WaPO? (as weak as that may be these days)

Posted by: croaker69 | February 3, 2010 2:26 PM | Report abuse


Rgarding should you be

NO, of course not. No one could expect anything from you but the idiotcy you
write here.

You know nothing about Intelligence, about what was or was not done in the questioning, or when.

And you prove yourself not only stupid but obnoxious. The Washington Post hits a new low.

Posted by: whistling | February 3, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

What a lousy piece of opinion journalism. Here's a hint for next time: think logically, and try to reach an honest conclusion.

When the North Vietnamese tortured John McCain he sold out his country pretty fast, we've all seen the videos that prove it. Does that mean that he really hates America? Or did he say what they wanted to hear because he was tortured? And are you honestly saying the the North Vietnamese were actually correct to torture him? That they had the right, and were acting ethically and morally?

Posted by: maurban | February 3, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

If you're afraid, the terrorists have won, Ms. Rodriguez.

And you are afraid, and your fear makes you call for Big Brother.

You're just another goper—

Posted by: lichtme | February 3, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

this is one of the most ill-informed and poorly argued pieces i've ever read on - and there have been some pretty bad ones. Why does this woman have a voice here at all?

Posted by: DCguy7 | February 3, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Does this B- work for the CIA or what? D.C. is going off the freakin rails....everyone else enjoying the suspiciously seeded...ahem...salty snow outside? I cannot decide whose satellites they are even attempting to thwart...the Chinese, the Indians....or our own!! Want proof positive Washington that your Gov. is in dissarray? Go outside your house and taste that snow....mmmm...barium salts

Posted by: jcck | February 3, 2010 2:40 PM | Report abuse

People who call for harsh treatment of terrorists and mock the Obama Administration's efforts to enforce our Constitution need to pause and think of this: Terrorists justify their actions against the US by pointing to actions the country carried out against them. By ignoring our constitution and the values our country is based on, and torturing terrorists in our custody because they hurt us would make us no better than they. I do not want that for my country. It would be a travesty of justice; and an abandonment of the values that daily our soldiers fight to protect.

Posted by: rkburke | February 3, 2010 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Isn't it interesting to see that the posters here

are as truly stupid as the writer.
The Washington Post is such dregs anymore...a few ranting zionists screaming for war with Iran...

and this kind of thing. fired anything that could write. Let alone journalists.

Posted by: whistling | February 3, 2010 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Not much support here for Rodriguiez's plan to torture the misguided Nigerian ........

and at the same time validate Al Qaeda's view of the US.

Posted by: kuseldavid1 | February 3, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

Sadly there are way too many koolaid drinkers that just don't get it. If there is any chance that what this guy could tell us will save lives - WE NEED THAT INFO NOW. It could be the info that saves your miserable lives or the lives of your children. If mirandizing combatants is a good thing - why hasn't Obama taken credit for it? He continues to let Eric Holder be owner of this brilliant decision.

Posted by: fink09 | February 3, 2010 2:46 PM | Report abuse

Talk about spin--now you're really reaching to find some way to say something negative.

I think you've watched too many episodes of Twenty-four: "We caught the bad guy, worked him over, got a confessions, and defused the bomb! All in a day's work. High-five."

Posted by: writinron | February 3, 2010 2:51 PM | Report abuse

So according to Rodriguez a criminal who talks at anytime other than the initial questioning is evidence of bad initial interrogation. There are any number of reasons a criminal may be quiet at first, but later decide to talk. As at least on poster noted above, building relationships and trust leads criminals to talk and provide reliable intelligence.

Posted by: ashotinthedark | February 3, 2010 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Really? And you know all this, Ms. Rodriquez, for a fact? That the ONLY reason he's talking now is because he was incompetently interrogated (or interrogated by the wrong people) before? You really know all of this for sure? Without a doubt?

You must indedd have 'for eyes only' or a much higher security clearance. Pity the rest of us don't have your knowledge.

Posted by: cbl55 | February 3, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Pretty pathetic rebuttals. Name-calling and false arguments (and factual misrepresentations) do not qualify as reasoned thought. If you do not agree with Ms. Rodreguez's conclusions, then rebut them with facts and cogent arguments. Otherwise, keep your infantile tantrums to yourselves.

Posted by: BlueIguana | February 3, 2010 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Really? And you know all this, Ms. Rodriquez, for a fact? That the ONLY reason he's talking now is because he was incompetently interrogated (or interrogated by the wrong people) before? You really know all of this for sure? Without a doubt?

You must indeed have 'for eyes only' or a much higher security clearance. Pity the rest of us don't have your knowledge.

Posted by: cbl55 | February 3, 2010 3:02 PM | Report abuse

should have pried the fingernails out of this nigerian scum....

Posted by: RoguesPalace | February 3, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

FACT for the various Goons who think this loon Rodriguez has a brain in her head: Bush/Cheney/Ashcroft made sure The Shoe Bomber was read his Miranda Rights 5 MINUTES AFTER HE WAS TAKEN INTO CUSTODY...AND HE WAS REPEATEDLY READ HIS MIRANDA RIGHTS FOR 3 DAYS AFTER THAT INITIAL READING. Stop with the baloney fear mongering and trying to politicize our national security. For shame.

Posted by: wiltonsjs | February 3, 2010 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Do you actually get paid for this drivel? I realize this an opinion piece, but shouldn't we see a little thought somewhere in there? I thought the WaPo had higher standards!

Posted by: jst606 | February 3, 2010 3:16 PM | Report abuse

I have never heard of Eva Rodriguez before but she sounds like she must be chummy with Kristol, Kraut, and the rest of the failed neo-cons, for whom up is down, left is right, war is peace etc. The Xmas Bomber is talking and that proves that not torturing alleged terrorists is a failure, right?

Posted by: gposner | February 3, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Please know this - if you don't beleive the Justice Deaprtment nobody cares!

Posted by: johnhouse | February 3, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

So long as we continue to believe and allow our political leadership to believe this war on terror is a minor inconvenience, we will continue to rationalize all sorts of illogical, potentially fatal, decisions.

We do not have to resort to torture to gain intelligence from terrorists, whether they be foreign nationals or U. S. citizens. But we ought to understand what they are attempting to do is not a crime, it is an act of war. And, war demands we start thinking and behaving differently than in peacetime.

As a nation we have become so insulated and detached from reality we are willing to buy into the myth that a hard headed and pragmatic approach to our war on terror cannot be resolved with protection of our own liberties and freedoms here. BS! It is quite simple: if someone engages in an act of terrorism against the United States, its people or property they are not entitled to the protections of law which are the rights of our citizens. And, if they openly attempt to kill or maim Americans anywhere in the world, they are fair game for maximum retailiation without mercy. Mercy is what we offer to those who show some remorse for their acts. Last time I looked not one of the terrorists captured (not arrested!) for their acts has shown any remorse.

Yes, we are a nation of law but acts of war are inherently designed to destroy lawful reconciliation of differences. Our political leadership is putting us in a postion where blind adherance to the rule of law without some common sense is endangering our nation and its people.

The present Administration is being subjected to a great deal of negative opinion for its handling of the trial of the master mind behind 9/11. The scorn and disbelief of the vast majority of American citizens is not out of a sense of revenge but out of a sense that our leaders continue to operate in a fantasy world of their own making. Continuing to do so is going to get someone killed and the blame for that will fall rightfully where it belongs: the Oval Office.

In addition to fixing the economy and regaining the confidence of the American middle class Barack Obama had better rethink his lawerly approach to how we treat enemy combatants. In case he needs to be reminded he is not trying a case in a moot court at Harvard; he is now the man sworn to protect both the American people and our Constitution. And the latter instituion and document is what the terrorists are hell bent on destroying along with as many of our people as possible.

Posted by: bobfbell | February 3, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

This opinion is solid and makes a valid point. The valuable data currently being provided is being gathered 5 weeks later than it should have been gathered. The constitution allows for handling enemy combatants differently than criminals just as military personnel have some of their constitutional rights suspended.

Folks admit it. The administration realizes it screwed up and it is now trying to cover up the screw-up because of the pressure that it is under. This was handled poorly from the first minute and Holder's flunkies are trying to clean up the mess they created.

Posted by: schmitt_fam | February 3, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

I think the author of this article forgot the man blew his crotch up. There would be no need to torture such person in order to extract further info. All you would have to say is tell me everything and you can have some pain meds. I don't think it would have taken me 50 minutes to spill the beans. Never mind the fact he was captured on american soil.

Posted by: lamarilium | February 3, 2010 3:40 PM | Report abuse

So what you're telling me is that we got more out of this gusy than anyone at Gitmo (since we got nothing out of them) and you're complaining?

Posted by: jjj141 | February 3, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Eva Rodriguez is one ugly fascist.

Posted by: burlydave | February 3, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

The Washington Post is down to asking readers for 'snow shots'

and calling something like the Rodrigeuz
stupid blab above a coluimn!

It is literrly true that the stuff she wrote here wouldn't pass a seventh grade
school newspaper. Absurd!

Posted by: whistling | February 3, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Eva Rodriguez thank you for a good story, I appreciate the fact that you gave us the info about what was said & what was done. Most blogers can not fathom the idea of hearing the whole story they only want to hear it, if it fit there cause or ideology.

I have never understood the concept of only seeing one side of a story. Don't listed to the bitter blogers that have no idea what you are saying, but they hate it because it is not what they want to hear.

The Democrats & Republicans are both guilty of this practice. I get a little tired of it. MR OBAMA has defiantly done some good things for the people of America. He has also done some very questionable things for the people of America. He has also said & done some very dumb things. This is coming from a Democrat so don't get your panties in a wad & call me names. Please everyone read the story & process the info in the Article as well as what you know then your blogs will not be so hateful. Divide & Conquer seems to be the norm with this Presidency.

Posted by: wildfire1946 | February 3, 2010 3:55 PM | Report abuse

Except that he was providing information throughout. But, don't let any little things like facts get in the way of your column.


Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 3, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

"An American conservative activist falsely and widely accused of phone tampering a Democratic Senator ? Got his lawyer after 28 hours."

The answer is simple, the Christmas bomber is a Black African. The activist is White.

Thomas Jefferson warned us of this problem if Blacks were given citizenship.

Posted by: draggingcanoe | February 3, 2010 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Even if you don't accept the idea of a "war on terror", can anyone deny that the actions of Al Qaeda constitute a national emergency? And that in a national emergency, the President could suspend Miranda rights in certain situations, like that of a human "ticking time bomb" like this Nigerian? What if there had been other attacks on the way? There haven't been yet, thankfully, but there very well could have been. We just got lucky.

But, I forgot, some of you paranoid knuckleheads out there actually believe our own government planned and executed the 9/11 attacks in order to justify going to war in Iraq and Afghanistan. Heaven help us all.

Posted by: ripvanwinkleincollege | February 3, 2010 4:07 PM | Report abuse

A Couple of Facts for Some Misinformed (or Willfully Misleading) Posters:

1)The Prez DOES NOT take his oath of office to protect YOU, the people of the US; he/she is sworn to defend and protect THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES, period, full stop. There's no Big Daddy in the White House, kids, so grow up.

2)Said Constitution DOES NOT "allow for handling enemy combatants differently than criminals," as schmitt_fam avers. In fact, the rights enumerated therein apply to all people, not just American citizens! See Glenn Greenwald's excellent piece on this latest GOP lie at for more enlightenment.

Posted by: stephenlouis | February 3, 2010 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Ms. Rodriguez and her neo-con friends have one goal in mind, weaken Mr. Obama! He is the Commander-In-Chief of a country involved in two wars. Eva, how do you think AlQaeda feels about your editorial. The neo-cons' concerted, mindless torrent of unfounded "soft on terrorism" charges only succeed in giving aid and comfort to our enemies. Knock it off!

Posted by: BBear1 | February 3, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

What is VERY heartening is that Ms. Rodriguez is in the small minority. Polls show that Americans are NOT overreacting, and are satisfied to let the rule of law stand. In other words, most Americans are not succumbing to fear, and instead are letting our values stand.

Posted by: arpy58 | February 3, 2010 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Well, that's another right wing idiot's opinion.

But let's not waste an opportunity to cry wolf and bray about the sky falling.

Sounds like Rodriguez is a no-name nobody who is desperate to get some attention with some hard right-wing terror mongering.

You go girl ... FoxNews just might pick you up as a low level copy writer for their propaganda bureau.


Posted by: DEFJAX | February 3, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Jack Bauer would have shot him in the kneecaps. I'm sure we could say that isn't torture. Rodriquez has a future at Fox. I suspect she is against trying him in a federal court. If so, did she complain when Dubya tried over 180 terrorists in the federal court system? The hypocrisy of the Republicans on this is over the top.

Posted by: wrw01011 | February 3, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Geez, this is like reading the KOS blog. Look, whether you agree or disagree with Ms. Rodriguez (who btw, is not in a small minority), the Obama administration is one domestic terrorist attack away from becoming a lame-duck administration. You would think they and their supporters would understand that. But letting the attorney general lead the administration in this regard is going to end up sending all of them over the electoral cliff. Not to worry though, you'll still have the legal moral high ground as the next republican president is sworn into office.

Posted by: deacon777 | February 3, 2010 4:37 PM | Report abuse

Positively disgusting. We honestly have much more to fear from the GOP's hypocritical lying and insidious undermining of the rule of law than we do any terrorist. Why does WaPo give freaks like this a venue? Her complete lack of historical knowledge about our republic, it's constitution, and path to the high road is just plain scary.

Posted by: DPoniatowski | February 3, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

For the Republicans whining and chastising Obama about his terrorism policy and suggesting that their party can do better, please keep in mind that so far there has been 1 horribly successful terrorist attack in our soil -- and the president at that time was a Republican. Stop pounding your chests and shouting that your party can keep us safe. The very sad truth is you have a track record that is not something to be proud about. We should all hope and pray that whoever is president can keep us safe from future attacks. Stop with the political nonsense about this vitally important issue. For shame.

Posted by: wiltonsjs | February 3, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

I forgot to ask, how are the bugging charges false? For the same reason that you think that the FBI did not get the best information possible.

I will say again, if Al Q is stupid enough to send a dufus like the Christmas Day Bomber into action knowing a bunch of actionable or even useful intelligence we are wasting a bunch of money on a group that is not a threat. Of course everyone in any position of power knows this. The only type of information this man might have is the type you have to have his full coperation to get, since he will have to help you develop it.

Posted by: Muddy_Buddy_2000 | February 3, 2010 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Ms Rodriguez is too experienced a reporter to have gotten her facts wrong in regard to the sequence of events in which Abdulmutallab was initially questioned and then asked for and got a lawyer.

Therefore, I believe that she's trying to be another Sarah Palin.

Sounds like her... NOT impressive. Disgusting, in fact.

Send her back to Miami.

Posted by: FedUp1 | February 3, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

Please remove this freaked out scared little girl off your voices pages, puhlease? Go away Eva Rodriguez, you are what Ben Franklin warned us about. Go hide with Cheney.

Posted by: datdamwuf2 | February 3, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

I agree with Ms. Rodriguez. Terrorist suspects should be immediately tortured and then put to death based on their forced confessions. Because that’s what Americans are, cowards and pansies, afraid of their own shadows. While were at it, let’s do the country a favor and chisel the “equal justice under law” motto off the Supreme Court building. No one serious believes that cr*p, why should we continue to delude the foolish masses that we are a country of laws? The cowardly Bush administration that tried the Shoe Bomber in a civilian court with civilian lawyers and allowed the terrorist to be read his Miranda rights set the worst possible example to follow. Thanks Ms. Rodriguez for reminding us that we are a morally bankrupt, cowardly people. Shame on the Obama administration for believing otherwise.

Posted by: codexjust1 | February 3, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Codexjust1, a modern-era Jonathan Swift. Kudos!

Posted by: wiltonsjs | February 3, 2010 5:11 PM | Report abuse

The literal wording of the 5th Amendment of the US constitution is:
"nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself"

Nowhere is it said that a suspect cannot be compelled to be a witness against others; i.e., by statements made as a result of questioning.
There is no constitutional right to withhold this type of information, because it is not self-incrimination. The Miranda decision, as crafted, is liberal judicial over-reach. Nonetheless, in normal circumstances, it serves a valid public purpose, because we don't want police, under normal circumstances, routinely slugging confessions out of people- which, unfortunately, is what often happened prior to Miranda.

These are not normal circumstances. Any incident involving Al Qaeda constitutes an emergency, because of their proven track record of inflicting mass casualties designed to inflict social and economic harm to a society of 300 million people. Therefore, if dealing with that kind of a threat does not constitute a national emergency justifying suspension of Miranda "rights", I don't know whatever would.

Failing to promptly question this person, under a Presidential directive so authorizing it, placed the United States public in severe danger, for all that was known at the time. Not torture him, just question him, as long as he continued to cooperate. Certainly, his relatives could have been rounded up and brought in to help, but he still should have been relentlessly questioned in the meantime. For all that was known, American lives were at stake.

If any of you out there don't grasp these concepts, I suggest you go back to kindergarten and re-start your education until you do.

Posted by: ripvanwinkleincollege | February 3, 2010 5:17 PM | Report abuse

There are opinions and then there's just garbage. In addition to having an Opinion Page, I recommend that the Washington Post also start a Garbage Page if they want to continue to publish articles like this.

Posted by: rlkinny | February 3, 2010 5:22 PM | Report abuse

ripvanwinkleincollege -- I am going to repeat this mantra until folks like you get it. Within 5 minutes of being in custody, the BUSH ADMINISTRATION read the Shoe Bomber his Miranda Rights. You seem like a very intelligent person. So I am puzzled why you don't appear to understand that the current Administration is implementing policy EXACTLY how the previous one did. Duh?

Posted by: wiltonsjs | February 3, 2010 5:22 PM | Report abuse

The Obama-haters here can't give him any credit at all, especially when he proves that torture is not only barbaric, and criminal, but unnecessary!

Their own failures in their eight disaster and bungle-plagued years are the real reasons for their attacks, hoping that by tearing down Obama, it might actually make Bush look like anything but the disaster the rest of the world considers him to be.

If we remember, the Civilized World gave Obama the Nobel Peace Prize just for promising to undo the disasters of the Republicans.

Posted by: gkam | February 3, 2010 5:24 PM | Report abuse

I guess this is where the Post siphons its toxic waste from the printing presses. Or is she just some spilled seed from that tosser, Murdoch?

Posted by: atidwell | February 3, 2010 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Umm... Ms. Rodriquez, you should believe what you think is true. If you're in the habit of believing what comes out of the mouths of US politicians and other scoundrels, then you may want to rethink that. Do you also think that these wars that the US is currently engaged are only as a consequence of people hating the US for no reason? The innocent get killed in wars. Combatants on both sides use whatever weaponry is available to them. The US might use faulty GPS guided missiles that kill 17 civilians and 0 combatants, while some "al-Qaeda guy might use a faulty lap-bomb that ends up hurting no one. Which is worse? Which is more scary? Imagine how the child in Iraq or Afghanistan feels knowing a US warhead might drop on his head at any moment. War sucks on every level, and you want to incite more of it? You should be locked up.

Posted by: halifar59 | February 3, 2010 5:33 PM | Report abuse

Post Partisan, oh really...You Ms Rodriquez are as Fox News like, oral speculation, anger, fear mongering as they come...If you had your actual facts straight and also brought in all the speculation the unanswered questions in this created Christmas day Underwear Bomber, you may sound like a reporter, non biased, intelligent, giving facts, not your poison, dark, neo fascist propaganda..I won't bother to read ANYTHING you write again, boy that was a mistake...My note is just a reaction to your emotional poison, which I am overly sick and tired of this garbage being sold as news...I am not buying, figuratively or literally your propaganda...

Posted by: grangersmith | February 3, 2010 5:36 PM | Report abuse

Reading these comments always reminds me that liberals truely are the tolerant and open minded ones.

Posted by: je121819 | February 3, 2010 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Sorry stephenlouis, unfortunatel yyoua re wrong, established law does, in fact, treat enemy combatants differently. Enemy soldiers do not, have constitutional protections for self incrimination, rights to a lawyer, etc. This is established law. Try again in the future to get your facts right.

Posted by: schmitt_fam | February 3, 2010 5:55 PM | Report abuse

What bothers me more than anything on this issue is people like this author nit picked on this Abdulmutallab issue. Now our government had no choice but to put the word out that this guy was talking. This is nothing more than a political cover. Obviously the people who send him new he would talk if he failed in his mission; after all, they did convince him to commit suicide and bring down an airliner. Ideally such information should not be advertised. People like this author and other critics did a disservice to our country. Shame on this administration for not having a backbone. They should have ignored their critics. The President is the commander-in-chief and top law enforcer. He as full authority to execute this war.

Posted by: AMQ1 | February 3, 2010 6:01 PM | Report abuse

My god, what hateful chick! She must be a Compassionate Conservative. You know, the ones who mass murdered civilians in their own homes during Shock and Awe, as they huddled together, terrified.

We have not forgotten who failed us on 9/11, and plunged us into the Bushworld of disasters, bungles, bombings, shootings, assassinations, and evil.

The Real World has not forgotten the War Crimes perpetrated by the Bush Administration.

Posted by: gkam | February 3, 2010 6:08 PM | Report abuse

There's a significant flaw in Rodriguez's logic (yeah, I know, it surprised me, too). She wants us to believe that whatever terrorist organization recruited and trained Abdulmutallab and put him on the plane watched the news reports that Abdulmutallab had failed and had been captured by authorities...and waited to see if he was cooperating. They didn't shut down any part of their network until they found out if he was talking and what he was telling us.

That's what you have to believe if you want to buy her argument that time was wasted by reading Abdulmutallab his rights. You have to believe that to accept the usual, breathless scare tactic that the bomb is ticking and if we don't get the information right now, it's going to go off. Unless, of course, Jack Bauer gets there in time.

Nice work, Eva. I'm sure Dick Cheney would be proud.

Posted by: baltova1 | February 3, 2010 6:09 PM | Report abuse

To wilsonsjs
I'm not a Republican and if the Bushies did that with Reid, I think it was equally wrong-headed and stupid. I've criticized them in these blogs for their inconsistency in arresting and trying John Walker Lindh as a civil criminal while holding Hamdi in a Navy brig without trial; both of them being American citizens caught at virtually the same time in Afghanistan fighting against American troops. If there ever was a situation in which a military tribunal could have been used, it was with these two. There was ample justification to swiftly judge and execute them, just as the British did with captured spy Nathan Hale during the Revolutionary War. We won the war, so we get to call Hale a hero, but to the British he was a traitor and they dealt with him as such under their own laws at the time.

The only defense the Bushies would have had, and only for those instances which were early-on- like Reid- was that nothing quite like this had ever occurred in US history. We're now eight years into this emergency, or war on terror, or whatever you want to call it, regarding Al Qaeda and their followers. You would think by now that people in the position of Eric Holder would have had LOTS of time to come up with a consistent, workable policy of dealing with these people in a regularized manner, granting them as many constitutional protections as deemed necessary but still recognizing that it constitues a public emergency, or a war, however you want to treat it.

Most people would also agree that if it's a war, you fight it as a war. If it's an emergency, you deal with it as an emergency- with each captured terrorist constituting an emergency because it signals that- once again- these vermin have crawled out of the woodwork and are again actively attacking the United States.

But what you CAN"T legally do, and I fault both the Bush Administration and the Obama Administration for this, is to switch back and forth between calling it a "war" or acting as though it is an "emergency", based purely on political expedience. That REALLY IS tyranny, of the worst kind, even though none of the people in these blogs seem to have picked up on that kind of a nuanced point.

Posted by: ripvanwinkleincollege | February 3, 2010 6:10 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: jrm1 | February 3, 2010 6:16 PM | Report abuse

This is one of the dumbest and least well thought out articles I have read in a long time. It doesn't even attempt to make an argument or a point.

Posted by: Rickster623 | February 3, 2010 6:18 PM | Report abuse

Please give it a rest. It really doesn't matter what this Administration says/does you will find fault.

Posted by: rlj1 | February 3, 2010 6:20 PM | Report abuse

Replying to:

"This column makes sense if what one wants is quantity of information. But if what one wants is quality than it is assuming things which do not seem supported by evidence.

Could we have gotten the same evidence, and faster, had we stuck with military courts and no Miranda rights? Maybe, but there is no evidence presented here to support that idea.

This really does miss the point. People with experience in interrogation say that it is about building relations with the person being interrogated. If the current reports are true, the FBI has succeeded in doing that. To assume that they would have succeeded and done so faster had they questioned him sufficiently aggressively is simply to beg the question.

Posted by: beckerl | February 3, 2010
12:31 PM"

Absolutely right, Becker; bravo! I would only add that the spin we should beware of (pace Ms. Rodriguez)is coming from the GOP, not the White House.

Posted by: DCSteve1 | February 3, 2010 6:26 PM | Report abuse

ripvanwinkleincollege -- Yes, this is a complicated situation. First of all, labeling this a "war on terror" is nonsense, another political tactic of the otherwise-dumb Bushies, used to make sure that idiot was re-elected in 2004 after falling asleep at the wheel and allowing 9/11. With me so far?

Terror is and always will be a tactic. Labeling this a "War on Terror" is baloney. To analogize, Republicans are waging a "War of Fear" for political gain in our great country. They want to stir fear in the electorate a tactic to advance their strategy (i.e., regaining power so they can advance their own goals which I won't characterize here because that's polemical and I'm trying to be purely analytical...not advance my own position, simply to give you a strategic perspective so you can better understand the stakes).

There's a great book I encourage you to I first devoured when I too was in college about 500 Million years ago: "Why Men Rebel" by Ted Robert Gurr. He's a former CIA guru, and this is hands-down the best analytical study on methods of war that has ever been written, covering 1,500 years of human warfare. Not an easy read but a major, foundational work. The goal of terror, simply stated, is to get us citizens all in a tizzy, worried like crazy about whether our government can protect us...getting us to fight amongst ourselves...encouraging us to engage in all manner of reactive, reckless, flailing acts that will further confuse/craze us. And, for my money, the Republicans are encouraging this for their own advantage and in a perverse way (because I do think at the end of the day these are honorable but deluded Americans)actually helping the terrorists by scaring the be-jesus out of us rather than helping us come together as a nation and reinforcing our united resolve to get through this.

I am not a Pollyana, not some liberal wuss (obviously not a whack-job Neocon). There are a lot of bad countries and folks out there who truly want to tear us down. We have yet to experience a major cyber-attack or another major weapons-type attack. That may happen; it's hard to defend 100% of the time. We only weaken ourselves when we intentionally "mis-define" the goals, strategy, and tactics. Let's join together and focus on a solution!

Posted by: wiltonsjs | February 3, 2010 6:31 PM | Report abuse

"Could this piece BE any more ignorant of the U.S. Constitution or the principle of the rule of law?"

No, I don't think it could be. Speaking as someone who spent over a decade as a criminal prosecutor, this article gave a case of chronic facepalm.

Posted by: steve-o1 | February 3, 2010 6:41 PM | Report abuse

sorry, "gave me a case..."

Posted by: steve-o1 | February 3, 2010 6:42 PM | Report abuse

stephenlouis wrote: Torture 'em all! Throw them in dungeons forever! No civilian trials, no military commissions! No sissy "rule of law!" Please, please, Daddy, do ANYTHING YOU HAVE TO DO so I won't be ascared of the bad people...cowards.
Poor Stephen here has no qualms about letting the bad guys who blow up a plane full of innocent folks on it (women, children, infants, elderly) get lawyered up and go silent. Stephen is so pure of thought and mind that he just doesn’t care who sent the bomber, what their capabilities are or what their next attack vector might be. It’s all about the bomber and his rights. To Stephen, the bomber isn’t a war fighter in disguise practicing terrorism; No, the bomber is just a typical criminal who deserves a lawyer (maybe John Edwards is available).
Stephen, maybe your pair will emerge and drop down one day but I don’t have great hopes for ya, boy. But, give us all a big lod squeal if it happens.

Posted by: MDDem1 | February 3, 2010 6:44 PM | Report abuse

Republicans who failed us on 9/11, then pushed us into two disastrous wars have no standing to criticize anybody, Ms Rodriguez! The Civilized World is working on how they are to respond as we type, and I will assist using the file "Art15_HTSC_ICC_EN (2)" which is the form to submit information to the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court.

Every bit helps.

Posted by: gkam | February 3, 2010 6:48 PM | Report abuse

to wiltonsjs
I agree with your previous post, and about the Republican tactics of fear-mongering. That's why they want to call it a war instead of the emergency situation that it actually is. I've written in earlier blogs that we can even act in our own defense, under the authority of the Second Amendment, to use the missile strikes and targeted killings in Afghanistan and Pakistan. A free people have the right to defend themselves from attack. And these methods are a proportional response to that attack, unlike Israel's recent fights in Lebannon and Gaza which were intentionally intended to terrorize a civilian population.

King Abdullah of Jordan has publicly stated, many times, that if Israel would come to a lasting peace with its neighbors, he believes that the entire jihadi situation would substantially calm down. We would be in less danger here, as a result, because Al Qaeda would have less recruits. A lot of Europeans have figured that out, even if a lot of Americans have not.

But with Al Qaeda, they would still oppose and attack us even if Israel did not exist. They want to impose a Muslim theocracy on the entire world, starting with the Middle East. We have to convince the remainder of the Muslim world that consorting with these nutcases is unwise, and if they persist in doing so, unhealthy as well. I think you and I see pretty much eye to eye on that one, and maybe if some of the other bloggers read more of what we are writing here, they will come to see this in a more complete way.

Posted by: ripvanwinkleincollege | February 3, 2010 6:48 PM | Report abuse

You're right - American values are for idiots - we should just torture everyone!

Posted by: jeffc6578 | February 3, 2010 7:02 PM | Report abuse

What is it about this WaPo columnist that lends any validity to her viewpoint? We might as well have read the views of someone picked at random coming out of the Union Station ladies room. She seems like a faux patriot, with a Cheney-like leaning for torture--the right thing to do and very effective, in her mind.

Posted by: axolotl | February 3, 2010 7:14 PM | Report abuse

Logic problems, factual absence, and a Cheney-like leaning to torture because it is the good thing to do and oh so effective, she implies. What is it about this person's experience and expertise that says she should be listened to any more than someone picked at random leaving the Union Station ladies room?

Posted by: axolotl | February 3, 2010 7:18 PM | Report abuse

What rock did the Post find this cretin under?

Posted by: thrh | February 3, 2010 7:29 PM | Report abuse

So, the leaders of Al Qaeda after knowing this guy a few weeks let him in on all of their secrets. Then they sent him off to blow himself up knowing that there was a real chance that he might screw it up and get caught. This guy was a dupe. He doesn't know anything. Al Qaeda probably wanted him to get caught. The whole affair is costing up billions and has us running around like fools. It fodder for hacks like Rodriguez, though. The more often they can press the fear button the happier they are.

Posted by: seldoc1 | February 3, 2010 7:35 PM | Report abuse

Could this piece BE any more ignorant of the U.S. Constitution or the principle of the rule of law? The perp was arrested on U.S. soil, and there is positively nothing in the Constitution that says it may be ignored when a Post pundit wants it to be. To argue otherwise, as Rodriguez is doing here, is to ignore the threat of tyranny and to give the terrorists exactly what they want.

Posted by: SB98765 "

Just 3 simple questions:

1. When exactly did the German Wermacht
acquire full Soviet Constitutional rights and deserved status in their civilian courts. Was it when they hit Soviet-occupied Poland, or Soviet soil itself.

2. When the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor, did they acquire full rights as US citizens when they entered US airspace? How about the Constitutional rights of Japanese forces who invaded and occupied parts of Alaska, the philippines, and various US-controlled islands.

3. The Nazi enemy that came into our country as saboteurs were treated as enemy. They were put in front of military tribunals after lawyerless interrogations. FDR signed their death warrants as unlawful enemy combatants and the SCOTUS ruled 9-0 in ex parte quirin that the Nazis were indeed enemy combatants who violated rules of war to gain advantage and should be executed.
Was FDR wrong? SCOTUS?
How did our country ever go on given we violated such precious Nazi and Japanese rights to our civilian courts. Or the Soviets, for their disregard of Nazi rights while attacking Soviets from the skies or on the ground??

Ooooooooh! The humanity!

Posted by: ChrisFord1 | February 3, 2010 7:50 PM | Report abuse

obama's official terrorism interrogation policy

"Don't ask, don't tell"

Posted by: ProCounsel | February 3, 2010 7:54 PM | Report abuse

ripvanwinkleincollege -- We do agree on much. As for "nut cases", wow so many at home as evidenced by this blog. How in the heck can we convince those outside of this country to work in our favor when we have soooooooo many wing nut citizens -- left and right -- ready to drink Kool Aid and toss bombs inside of our country. Dispiriting for true patriots, i.e., not whack-job Tea Bag nut jobs or whacko KOS types...just plain old everyday believers in what a great country this is...and how it's going to the dogs. Oh well...

Posted by: wiltonsjs | February 3, 2010 7:55 PM | Report abuse

ripvanwinkleincollege: Exhibit A in our discussion: ChrisFord1. Perfect example of aiding the terrorists.

Posted by: wiltonsjs | February 3, 2010 7:59 PM | Report abuse

It is hypocritical for those who eat at the table of freedom and democracy to take those rights away from others. Who put this "journalist" in charge of our legal system? So much for the truth and journalistic ethics.

Posted by: akibono3 | February 3, 2010 8:02 PM | Report abuse

It would be nice for you to have some facts. Facts such as that he stopped talking and had to be brought into surgery. Facts such as that what's got him talking is that his family appeared and convinced him to cooperate. That couldn't be done in an instant.

In any case, I hope you took the same tack with how the Bush administration handled Reid, for instance.

Posted by: mxyzptlk1 | February 3, 2010 8:05 PM | Report abuse

Great Post. This administration is in CONSTANT damage control mode. Thank God the People of Massachusetts sent the strong salvo of AWAKENING from Obama's dangerous ideological approach to high office. He is out of his league. I was DISGUSTED to hear that the Nigerian was read "his" Miranda rights. Isn't this unconstitutional, the Miranda rights pertain to U.S. CITIZENS and the U.S. Constitution. This guy should be tried by a MILITARY Tribunal, not a court. Again, Obama chooses to polish the U.S. image abroad rather than be DRACONIAN on Islamic potential mass murderers. Just count up the times since he has taken office that he A)issues an edict/agenda from above and then B)finding huge resistance from Americans, has to blabber to a microphone and backtrack. His style is 100% spin or "reframe" the original agenda. Oh, he will "fight for Americans...I will fight for.." He is fighting AGAINST Amercians. Medicare, Social Security are in financial trouble but he thought he could ram his agenda of Mega numbers of agencies for his "health care" baby. Hey, Barack--I want health care--I want you to bomb Iran if necessary to PREVENT RADIOLOGICAL ISLAMIST BOMBS from exploding in American cities through Iranian proxies before long. Do you have the guts and conviction??

Posted by: marat1 | February 3, 2010 8:23 PM | Report abuse

The Admin-Spin on this is genius perfect -- cause nobody can check it out-!!! Sorry, National Security issues. This group of fools in DC scare the stuffing out of me.

Posted by: BadNews | February 3, 2010 8:37 PM | Report abuse

The Constitution is there to protect the innocent, right? So when you have a guy that everyone knows is guilty, what's the point of it? Get him into a military brig and wet down the waterboard! Security matters more than rights! I think Jefferson said that.

Posted by: turningfool | February 3, 2010 9:03 PM | Report abuse

Please be assured I'm not buying THE spin that the always dishonest Republicans are shilling.
How many shows was Sen Snowe on today, trying to snow the viewers with rambling bla, bla, bla and totally untruthful and misleading agitprop? I might add to ALWAYS polite pundits on MSNBC, unlike the thugs on Fox, who love to cut in and disrupt Democrats if they are ever foolish enough to go on Fox, that is.

I can only hope the DNC has a good, honest and strong candidate to field against this (now) hopeless GOP hack.
What IS there about the Republican party that turns its members into such..brazen liars?

Posted by: mimosa1 | February 3, 2010 9:52 PM | Report abuse

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Posted by: ewyrtuyioetyerhytiu | February 3, 2010 10:11 PM | Report abuse

Facts don't matter to the GOP and this poor woman who thinks she has passed the journalism test.

Here are the facts:

Since 911, 100% of the terrorists captured on American soild have been tried in convicted in Civilian courts.

The few people that they tried in Military tribunals did not go well. Bush's guy in the Justice department ( a former judge) rules that ALL enemy combatants that were on American soil HAD to have legal counsel.

So, Ms.Rodriguez - please do your homework. We are not interest in this struypid partisan spin. Only and idiot doesn't know this is political grandstanding by the GOP.

Next the GOP will tell us that Saddam had WMDs and that he and bin Laden were connected. The fact that Bin Laden is a Shiite and Saddam was a Sunni is besides the point - right GOP.

The party has sunk to new lows. I am embarrassed for them!

Posted by: Julescator | February 3, 2010 10:16 PM | Report abuse

and to think; they want to ban the use of the word, "retarded".

Posted by: bproulx45 | February 3, 2010 10:23 PM | Report abuse

Because, after all, Ms. Rodriguez, what really matters to us is what YOU think.

Posted by: turningfool | February 3, 2010 10:41 PM | Report abuse

I hope this Eva Rodriguez gets raped by a smelly negro and gets infected with AIDS, because the chances of that happening is more likely than dying from a terrorist attack.

Posted by: playa_brotha | February 3, 2010 10:58 PM | Report abuse

Buy Chertoff's scanners!

Buy 'em by the billion!

You are in peril!


no one died. repeat: no one died.

Posted by: forestbloggod | February 3, 2010 11:12 PM | Report abuse

This cretin failed, repeat failed at bombing a plane just like his retarded brother the Shoe Bomber. Why don't we spend all of the resources of all of our intelligence agencies to as Wile E. Coyote was his giant rubber band failed. You pundits are more moronic than I ever thought possible.

Posted by: pdeblin | February 3, 2010 11:54 PM | Report abuse

This country has become a nation of "Chicken Littles" at the proding of a bunch of Republican hacks

Posted by: jmfromdc | February 4, 2010 8:11 AM | Report abuse

"It means that at least some of the allegedly fresh information Abdulmutallab is now handing up may have gone stale. "

Well, it looks like no attacks were scheduled between Christmas and now, so the info he had didn't get "stale". No need to panic...It's not good to wach so much 24..

Posted by: Irina1 | February 5, 2010 3:49 PM | Report abuse

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