- President George W. Bush has signed executive orders
giving him sole authority to impose martial law, suspend habeas corpus
and ignore the Posse Comitatus Act that prohibits deployment of U.S. troops
on American streets. This would give him absolute dictatorial power over
the government with no checks and balances.
- Bush discussed imposing martial law on American streets
in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks by activating "national
security initiatives" put in place by Ronald Reagan during the 1980s.
- These "national security initiatives," hatched
in 1982 by controversial Marine Colonel Oliver North, later one of the
key players in the Iran-Contra Scandal, charged the Federal Emergency Management
Agency with administering executive orders that allowed suspension of the
Constitution, implementation of martial law, establishment of internment
camps, and the turning the government over to the President.
- John Brinkerhoff, deputy director of FEMA, developed
the martial law implementation plan, following a template originally developed
by former FEMA director Louis Guiffrida to battle a "national uprising
of black militants." Gifuffrida's implementation of martial law called
for jailing at least 21 million African Americans in "relocation camps."
Brinkerhoff later admitted in an interview with the Miami Herald that President
Reagan signed off on the initiatives and they remained in place, dormant,
until George W. Bush took office.
- Brinkerhoff moved on the Anser Institute for Homeland
Security and, following the 9/11 terrorist attacks, provided the Bush White
House and the Pentagon with talking points supporting revised "national
security initiatives" that would could allow imposition of martial
law and suspension of the Posse Comitatus Act of 1978, the law that is
supposed to forbid use of troops for domestic law enforcement.
- Brinkerhoff wrote that intentions of Posse Comitatus
are "misunderstood and misapplied" and that the U.S. has in times
of national emergency the "full and absolute authority" to send
troops into American streets to "enforce order and maintain the peace."
- Bush used parts of the plan to send troops into the streets
of New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina. In addition, FEMA hired former
special forces personnel from the mercenary firm Blackwater USA to "enforce
- Blackwater USA, in its promotional materials, describes
itself as "the most comprehensive professional military, law enforcement,
security, peacekeeping, and stability operations company in the world,"
adding that "we have established a global presence and provide training
and operational solutions for the 21st century in support of security and
peace, and freedom and democracy everywhere."
- Blackwater is also a major U.S. contractor in Iraq and
has a contract with the Bush White House to provide additional security
work "on an as-needed basis."
- The Department of Homeland Security established the "Northern
Command for National Defense," a wide-ranging program that includes
FEMA, the Pentagon, the FBI and the National Security Agency. Executive
orders already signed by Bush allow the Northern Command to send troops
into American streets, seize control of radio and television stations and
networks and impose martial law "in times of national emergency."
- The authority to declare what is or is not a national
emergency rests entirely with Bush who does not have to either consult
or seek the approval of Congress for permission to assume absolute control
over the government of the United States.
- The White House press office would neither confirm nor
deny existence of Bush's executive orders or the existence of the Northern
Command for National Defense. Neither would the Department of Homeland
- But my sources within the White House and DHS tell me
the plans are in place, ready for implementation when the command comes
from the man who keeps telling the American public that he is a "war
time president" who will "do anything in my power" to impose
his will on the people of the United States.
- And he has made sure that power will be absolute when
he chooses to use it.
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