Subject: Re: [NEWS]: Probe: U.S. Knew of Jet Terror Plots
> Yes, the law varies from place to place. If I violate the
> law IN FACT, I AM guilty. If I get caught and convicted, I
> am FOUND guilty.
> Consider this simple thought experiment. Suppose that I am
> indeed in your hypothetical jurisdiction where defense of
> property is not allowed and I shoot the burglar. We then go
> to court for trial and I further lie under oath about what
> happened, explaining to the court that I was in fear for my
> life and therefore shooting him was simple self defense.
> Suppose further that the court believes my statements
> contrary to the fact and finds me innocent.
> Your position is that no crime was therefore committed.
> My position is that TWO crimes were committed; the original
> shooting and the perjury to cover it up. I merely wasn't
> caught committing them.
> Your position is that taken by criminal sociopaths. There
> is no 'fact', no 'right' and no 'wrong', no violations of
> any kind, and the only crime is being caught and convicted.
Let me get this straight......
SGT Marsh, USArmy, on duty at a checkpoint in Bosnia, shoots
assorted "civilians" of both sexes and a variety of ages who he
claims to believe were paramilitary infiltrators.
Reprsentatives of international tribunal investigates,
determines that the dead weren't paramilitary infiltrators, that
SGT Marsh was (a) stupid or (b) a bloodthirsty sociopath and
that a charge or charges of criminal acts are warranted.
Charges are filed and warrant for arrest issued.
USArmy, sensitive to US Constitutional and political issues, has
meanwhile transfered SGT Marsh back to Fort Knox as assisatnt
NCO club manager.
USArmy JAG/CID/Help from JD investigate, inquire and by whatever
method determine that either the dead folks were paramilitaries
or even if they weren't the SGT believed they formed a clear and
present danger to which his response was justified and balanced.
Unwritten in their report are statements indicating that GEN
Bloodthirsty, hero of two wars and likely eventually a Senate
candidate, had in Leadership Training Lectures to senior NCO and
JOs harped on these damn paramilitary terrorist infiltrators.
"Minority" report from one inverstigating officer, LT Festouche,
a new boy with an ROTC commission from UCBerkley, claims SGT
Festouche, pissed off at a cheating wife and two weeks straight
of MREs had simply fucked up, and wasted civilians.
LtTFestouche accuses Army of coverup and writes article for
_Rolling Stone_ and faces a terrible fate after his next tour of
duty as refuse officer in Thule, Greenland.
USArmy, advised by the Justice Dept, but a little at odds with
the weak-kneed pansies over at State, as a part of the Executive
Branch, exercises executive privilege, sovereign immunity and
"to protect SGT marsh's Constitutional Rights", refuses to
surrender SGT Marsh to the Dutch/Belgians/etc. for trial.
A. Did a crime occur?
B. Did several crimes occur?
C. Did the SGT's training raise the likelihood of impoper
C. Did US senior officers officials (if they acted to coverup
what could rightly even in US eyes be interpreted as a crime)
themselves commit criminal acts under US law).
Here's part of the problem we're discussing "When is a crime a
crime?" In every system, it evolves upon one or groups or
individuals to determine whether an action was of criminal
intent and to what extent the alleged perpetrator should be held
to account for the acts alleged. In the US, we tend to regard
our systems, and I believe rightly so(although there are
certainly numerous political, socio-economic and personal
exceptions), as at least by intent generally fair and just in
Other systems, and those of Europe in most cases, adopt a more
blanket approach to "crime" - and this is why it's so amusing to
hear European Liberals complain about the US, for their own law
enforcement agencies can routinely act officially in a fashion
which would we in the US would find demonstrably despotic and in
violation of our concepts of individual rights, the "pickup
everybody in sight and we'll sort out the guilty down at the
station house" approach followed by those quaint French customs
which allow folks to be held with only modest if any indication
of guilt, and in which the presumption of guilt of the accused
seems equal to if not greatly outweighing any official
recognized presumption of innocence.
In no way does the fictional tale above indicate any feeling on
my part that any part of the US military would ever act in any
fashion to construe or interpret facts in a light favorable to
any interests involved. A number of years of active and reserve
service have reinforced that belief. EMOTICON OMITTED.
As often as I disagree - often violently and all too personally,
because I suspect many of his reactions are "environmental"
rather than intellectual - with Vince, and, Jeez, 3 times this
wekk I've had to agree with him, I suspect he's on safe ground
here, because you can't be sure a crime has been committed until
someone's actually convicted of it. One guy's crime is may be
another guy's acts instigated by fear or threat, and in every
system there are a number of individuals or groups who may be
empowered to determine which and to what extent the acts may be
defined as a crime.
Let's face it...in the case of OJ's criminal jury, folks used a
variety of excuses to avoid confrontation with a pretty much
convincing set of facts. Deep in their hearts, they likely
recognized his guilt, but by voting not guilty, they were
telling a world largely convinced of his guilt that OJ didn't do
it, but even if he did it was "exused", and having been excused,
the homicides must nay offficially have been crimes at all (or
at worst allowable, excusable ones). The glove that didn't fit
was simply a convenient accessory to the excuse defense.