Despite a groundswell of public opposition, the Orwellian named National Defense Authorization Act passed in the House and Senate. President Obama initially had plans to veto it. His veto threat was not made out of concern for the civil liberties that are so egregiously infringed upon in this bill. Rather, Obama wanted to veto the bill because it gave the military certain powers that the office of the President did not get. Glenn Greenwald dismantles the popular myths that apologists of this atrocity frequently seek refuge in.
Condemnation of President Obama is intense, and growing, as a result of his announced intent to sign into law the indefinite detention bill embedded in the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). These denunciations come not only from the nation’s leading civil liberties and human rights groups, but also from the pro-Obama New York Times Editorial Page, which today has a scathing Editorial describing Obama’s stance as “a complete political cave-in, one that reinforces the impression of a fumbling presidency” and lamenting that “the bill has so many other objectionable aspects that we can’t go into them all,” as well as from vocal Obama supporters such as Andrew Sullivan, whowrote yesterday that this episode is “another sign that his campaign pledge to be vigilant about civil liberties in the war on terror was a lie.” In damage control mode, White-House-allied groups are now trying to ride to the rescue with attacks on the ACLU and dismissive belittling of the bill’s dangers.