Memory Slam the Door
Reader RD writes to say that "Michael Ratner, the guy leading the fight to free Guantanamo's prisoners has signed petitions in support of NPA and its leader, Jose Maria Sison". Jose Maria Sison is the leader of the Communist Party of the Philippines and the highest person in the chain of command which ordered the execution of Colonel James Rowe. The Anti-Protester blog writes:
On May 30, 2005 the NY Times reported on an increasingly successful effort by the Center for Constitutional Rights,(CCR) which it described only as "a group based in New York," to enlist lawyers to represent detainees being held by the U.S. at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. The story focused on CCR's success in recruiting prominent law firms to the effort including Clifford Chance, Dorsey&Whitney; Allen & Overy; Covington & Burling and Wilmer, Cutler, Pickering Hale & Dorr a firm that, oddly enough, also does business with companies involved in the U.S. defense, national security and government contracts sectors. ...
In order to fully understand CCR's publicly stated reasons for advocating for prisoners at Guantanamo, which center on the concept of "civil rights," and to understand its lesser known but much more important reasons for wanting interrogations there halted, it is necessary to briefly examine the history of the CCR and its leadership ... and a thorough examination of CCR's current president, Michael Ratner, who is the driving force behind the Guantanamo shut-down effort, is absolutely vital to understanding the position that CCR takes today regarding the rights of prisoners captured in the War on Terror. ...
Besides providing legal support for terrorists and enemies of the U.S., Michael Ratner and CCR endorse communist, fringe leftist and radical groups with anti-U.S. agendas. Ratner himself often signs petitions on behalf of such groups. A typical example of this involves the case of Dr. Jose Maria Sison, the head of the communist New Peoples Army (NPA) of the Philippines ... the NPA eventually turned on itself and killed approximately 1000 of its members in a paranoid orgy of bloodletting. Sison, who headed the NPA at the time, is widely believed to have ordered the purge. Sison and NPA are on terrorist lists in both Europe and in the U.S., which has frozen NPA's assets. Michael Ratner, along with Lynne Stewart, Ramsey Clark, Leslie Cagan, C. Clark Kissinger, Michael Steven Smith, the NLG and others signed a petition demanding that Sison and the NPA both be removed from Europe's list of known terrorists. The group also voiced its opposition to any attempts that might be made to extradite Sison from the Netherlands, where he currently lives.
Readers who remember my piece on Colonel Rowe will recall that I regarded his assassin, Danilo Continente, as a cog in the wheel. (See the comments on the post). Although I regarded Continente's sentence of 16 years imprisonment too light to fit the crime, I believed that justice was best served by going after the masterminds and enablers of the crime rather than punishing the triggerman further. Rowe, it will be recalled, successfully concealed his status as a Special Forces soldier while a POW in Vietnam until
students in a so-called anti-war organization in the United States researched public records and formulated biographies on Americans captured in Vietnam. After reading Lt. Rowe's biography, his Viet Cong captors became furious. They marched him into a cramped bamboo hut and forced him to sit on the damp clay floor. Several high ranking Viet Cong officials were staring down at Lt. Rowe. They held out a piece of typed onion skin paper.
"The peace and justice loving friends, of the National Liberation Front, who live in America, have provided us with information which leads us to believe you have lied to us," they informed Lt. Rowe. "According to what we know, you are not an engineer . . . you have much military experience which you deny . . . You were an officer of the American Special Forces."
The passage from Anti-Protester, substantially echoed by Front Page Magazine shows why I felt this way. The same people who betrayed Colonel Rowe in Vietnam and who subsequently ordered his execution in the Philippines are still in business. The same "peace and justice loving" activists, or people of their ilk, are working to free as many terrorists as possible from Guantanamo Bay. And the same Jose Maria Sison who commanded the Communist force which killed Colonel Rowe is still resisting extradition from Europe, from which he has presided over the murder of thousands. They are laboring ceaselessly to bring to us what we so richly deserve. We owe them no less than to return the favor.