Cutting through the bullshit.

Sunday, 14 January 2007

Lawyers beware!

Close on the heels of the Saddam trial, where the defense team justifiably feared for their lives – that is, those who survived – now the Bush team has launched not so veiled threats against law firms that represent ‘detainees down there’.

Speaking this week on Federal News Radio, a Web site and AM radio station offering helpful hints for bureaucrats and helpful news for the administration, Cully Stimson, the deputy assistant secretary of defense for detainee affairs, tried to rally American corporations to stop doing business with law firms that represent inmates of the Guantánamo internment camp.

… when corporate America got word of this dastardly behavior, “those C.E.O.’s are going to make those law firms choose between representing terrorists or representing reputable firms.” He added: “We want to watch that play out.”

Would those be reputable firms like KBR and Halliburton?

…Mr. Stimson’s message to corporate executives that lawyers “are representing the very terrorists who hit their bottom line in 2001.”

It seems not, because those firms have done a roaring business in the wake of 9/11. To their credit, the NY Timess editorialists have come down on the right side just this once:

Not only do we find Mr. Stimson’s threats appalling, we differ with him about 9/11. The tragedy and crime of that day was that thousands of innocents were slaughtered — not that it hurt some companies’ profit margins.

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