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04/09/2003 Archived Entry: "Who cares about Mike Hawash?"

WHO CARES? His name is Mike. He's an American citizen. He's got a native-born American wife and homegrown American kiddies. He's got a good job as a programmer at Intel. His friends and neighbors know he's a great guy. His boss likes him. He's a volunteer youth soccer coach, and involved in civic projects. He's not accused of committing a single crime of any sort. So how can the fedgov arrest (oh, excuse me, I mean "detain") Maher "Mike" Hawash and hold him nearly incommunicado in a high-security federal prison?

Hell, they won't even comment on why he's been arrested. And they don't have to. Because he's a "material witness" in a "terrorism investigation." And somehow this -- this single, facile statement -- is allowed to wipe out the entire Bill of Rights and hundreds of years of legal tradition. If you think Mike Hawash committed a crime, fine. Get a warrant, arrest him, and swiftly charge him. Allow him full legal counsel, open hearings, and access to the media. If you really have a case, you don't need to pull the ghastly, cruel shenanigans the feds are pulling now.

How can we tolerate this Star Chamber, this Inquisition, and still even have the nerve to pretend that this is the land of the free?

Please help Mike Hawash. If one American citizen can be denied his legal rights, then any American citizen can be denied his rights. "First they came for the Arab-Americans, but I didn't ..."

Posted by Claire @ 12:56 PM CST

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