Bush Moves Towards Martial Law

With all the attention that the Military Commissions Act of 2006 is receiving - many of us have missed the companion legislation that George Bush signed into law along with it.

Public Law 109-364, the "John Warner Defense Authorization Act of 2007" was signed by the George Bush on October 17th, 2006.

This law, which was signed in a private Oval Office ceremony, allows the President to declare a "public emergency" and station troops anywhere in America and take control of state-based National Guard units without the consent of the governor or local authorities, in order to "suppress public disorder."

According to Senator Patrick Leahy, this law will actually encourage the President to declare federal martial law.


President Bush signed this law on the same day that he signed the Military Commissions Act of 2006. The two laws complement one another. One allows for seizing, detaining and torturing U.S. citizens, while the other allows military onto the streets of America.

Taken together - these laws are the very essence of dictatorship - and the term is "martial law."

This law states:

"the President may employ the armed forces, including the National Guard in Federal service, to restore public order and enforce the laws of the United States..."

"...the President determines..."

"in order to suppress, in any State, any insurrection, domestic violence, unlawful combination, or conspiracy."

And what exactly constitutes "insurrection" or "conspiracy"?

"...the President determines..."

The law also facilitates militarized police round-ups and detention of protesters, so called "illegal aliens," "potential terrorists" and other "undesirables" for detention.

On the 29th of September, Leahy entered into the Congressional Record that he had "grave reservations about certain provisions of the fiscal Year 2007 Defense Authorization Bill Conference Report," the language of which, he said, "subverts solid, longstanding posse comitatus statutes that limit the military's involvement in law enforcement, thereby making it easier for the President to declare martial law." This had been "slipped in," Leahy said, "as a rider with little study," while "other congressional committees with jurisdiction over these matters had no chance to comment, let alone hold hearings on, these proposals."

The historic and ominous re-writing of the Insurrection Act, accomplished in the dead of night, which gives Bush the legal authority to declare martial law, is now an accomplished fact.

Front page this!

Front page this!

I'm glad you posted this John, because IMHO, the truth is

spreading much to slowly! Bush/Cheney/Rummy/Rove/Rice seem more arrogant to me than ever!!!

Why do they allow our

Why do they allow our President to give himself these powers?.... because they all know that they at risk for getting strung up over the things they themselves have already gotten away with.

They are scared..

..are we prepared?

If America rose up against Germany..... who in this world is prepared to rise up against the US?

this monkey is on our back

This is far, far too much authority to vest in a madman like


Come on people, we are in grave danger!!!.

America did not rise up

America did not rise up against Germany, JJames. Most of the industrialists in America, like Henry Ford, loved Hitler and Mussolini. Fascism is always great for business, bad for people. The American people were dragged into WWII only reluctantly and only after Hitler had stomped on Europe for almost two years.

That said, I agree with your sentiment: Who will oppose America's army, should American democracy continue to fail? I don't think the elites who control America's army will simply crush the rest of the world: no, their power is far more fragile than that, and Russia and China won't stand for it. But it will certainly be a much darker world if the Republicans steal another election next week and secure their power for another generation.

i never thought.....

.....i would care about a midterm election so much.

i am embarassed to admit i never voted in a midterm election before.

i feel like this election is my last feeble hope - emotionally grasping at straws - that there could be some sort of reversal of fortunes for the republicans - a day of reckoning - and a restoration of sanity.

maybe, I dream, the democrats will launch investigations - and like Al Capone they will nail this administration on some technicality of the law - anything - tax evasion - j-walking - anything - anything, to turn this tragedy around and restore the balance of power.

but, another part of me fears this election will be the final nail in the coffin.

part of me fears that these new draconian martial laws are in fact designed to handle the possible post-election street protests which could erupt with another OBVIOUS stolen election. maybe they expect it. maybe they want it to happen. maybe they have no interest in appearing honest anymore. The Soviet Union never cared about how they were perceived by their own people. On the contrary, they banked on fear.

i never imagined my wife and i would be counting the days to the next midterm election. For those with a penchant for American history - this is a defining moment for this republic. This is one for the books. So much hangs in the balance.

John, I totally agree w/you!



And I must share a brain.

"It was all about finding a way to do it. That was the tone of it. The president saying ‘Go find me a way to do this."

Now Buzz-able!

(UPDATE: link corrected)

Are you able to fix the headline

so that it reads MarTial Law?

Rats! No, corrections aren't possible...

Rats! No, corrections aren't possible (only for a few seconds).

Sorry for having messed this up....    Frown

Eh, not a big deal.

Typos happen.

Now Digg-able Too!

Absolutely true, John

and for me the fear is *when* and *how* they plan to actually use these laws. The US could end up like Stalin's USSR, with troublesome people 'disappearing'.

This issue threatens the US far, far more than the Republican page sex scandal, but has gotten far less media play.

Our only option is to vote out the Republican scum that supported these laws, and then re-engineer the Democratic Party into something that represents the people.

300,000,000 americans

good luck to them if they try to subjugate 300,000,000 americans.

these laws are like loaded guns sitting on a table. very dangerous.

but, should they ever decide to pick those guns up and actually try to use them on american citizens..... well, i think they would be making a very serious miscalculation. it would take american soldiers and american national guardsmen to occupy american cities - and round up american citizens - EVERYWHERE.

The Russian people never knew freedom. They went from subjugation under the czar to subjugation under the communists.

The United States is a very different place.

You're on the money, John

The timing of these acts, the approaching war with Iran, the obvious stolen elections that will go "republican," the popping of the 10 trillion housing bubble, oil going into the stratosphere, the derivatives market collapse, and exposure of their dirty 911 deeds, means that these tools need to be at the ready, and quite frankly, they are now!

The hammer has been raised and our only hope is that it strikes a finger, so we have a moment to react for the positive.

Only problem is they haven't hit their fingers yet, they've been firing on all cylinders since the subversion of the press and democracy back in 1999-2000 when Karl Rove promised pro-media consolidation laws to the Jack Welch's of the day.

Then the Bush Crime family, you know the JFK assasins/Iran-Contra/Bay of Pigs boys, got their self-manufactured "Pearl harbor" and now here we sit.

German Textbook "nazism/fascism/totalitarianism."

And some people think they're incompetent. As Hitchcock would say, "That's their McGuffin!"


As B.B King once sang, "Nobody loves me but my mother, and she might be jiving too!"

Goodnight America, see you at the "gas station" that doesn't pump petroleum!


I disagree, John. You are

I disagree, John. You are employing a dangerous kind of exceptionalism when you say that America is a "different place" than the former Soviet Union. America is as susceptible to authoritarian rule as anywhere else. Isn't the passage of dictatorial powers in recent months indication enough that a full-blown dictatorship is possible in America? Didn't other authoritarian governments in history often begin with the same quiet manoeuvering? Doesn't Bush's 40% approval rating -- despite his extended piss on the constitution -- suggest a sizeable number of Americans will welcome a dictatorship?

I'm not saying a dictatorship is inevitable in America. But let's not think of America as the exception to the rule of every other human civilization that has ever existed. That kind of thinking is part of the problem here, not the source of a solution.


Freedom is given up slowly. And we've given up a lot in the past 5 years. Just as a frog lies in the pot's water as the heat is turned up. Meanwhile, Bushco grabs control of the National Guard, builds detention centers, and dumps habeas corpus. We can only speculate what they are planning. At least I don't claim to know.

Most of us here are more or less aware of this. But Fox-watching Americans are not.

simuvac, it may interest you that at least Randi Rhodes has claimed that Bush *is* a dictator. The 'signing statements' he makes as laws are passed often state that he can ignore the law if he wants to. Thus he is above the law of the land, and can do whatever he wants.

John and subsequent posters have said most of it...

I do believe I am going to stash certain second amendment items somewheres other than my home.....

Even if I am carted away, some others will have something.....

"There are none so hoplessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free" (Goethe)..... a paraphrase from V: Cast aside the illusions. Only when you are finally hopeless can you truly be free.

More details about this...

More details about this Public Law 109-364, or the "John Warner Defense Authorization Act of 2007" (H.R.5122) can be found in this InformationLiberation article.
( http://www.informationliberation.com/index.php?id=17432 )

These freaks are a free countrys' worst nightmare

This evil bill is about protecting torturers from prosecution.
This evil bill overturns habeas corpus--for all of us.
This evil bill is about deliberately dis-establishing the rule of law.
This evil bill is about establishing dictatorship.
This evil bill is about making torture legal.
This evil bill just "passed."

This evil bill is the most disgusting horror that the Bushist fascists have forced on the American people--to date.

There is a cancer now on not just the Presidency, but on our whole democracy.

They have voted to establish a class of persons who are now officially non-persons, a class for whom the rule of law no longer exists. Once it was slaves, Indians, Jews, women; the designated subhuman class now consists of -- whomever the dictating executive dictates.

The Nazis killed six million people, and yet were treated with dignity and tried at Nuremberg according to the rule of law.

These evil people who wrote this bill are opposed to the rule of law and are intent upon establishing a new sub-human class, and this evil action shames our country.


Those who voted to overturn the rule of law and legalize torture:

Alexander (R-TN)
Allard (R-CO)
Allen (R-VA)
Bennett (R-UT)
Bond (R-MO)
Brownback (R-KS)
Bunning (R-KY)
Burns (R-MT)
Burr (R-NC)
Carper (D-DE)
Chambliss (R-GA)
Coburn (R-OK)
Cochran (R-MS)
Coleman (R-MN)
Collins (R-ME)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Craig (R-ID)
Crapo (R-ID)
DeMint (R-SC)
DeWine (R-OH)
Dole (R-NC)
Domenici (R-NM)
Ensign (R-NV)
Enzi (R-WY)
Frist (R-TN)
Graham (R-SC)
Grassley (R-IA)
Gregg (R-NH)
Hagel (R-NE)
Hatch (R-UT)
Hutchison (R-TX)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Isakson (R-GA)
Johnson (D-SD)
Kyl (R-AZ)
Landrieu (D-LA)
Lautenberg (D-NJ)
Lieberman (D-CT)
Lott (R-MS)
Lugar (R-IN)
Martinez (R-FL)
McCain (R-AZ)
McConnell (R-KY)
Menendez (D-NJ)
Murkowski (R-AK)
Nelson (D-FL)
Nelson (D-NE)
Pryor (D-AR)
Roberts (R-KS)
Rockefeller (D-WV)
Salazar (D-CO)
Santorum (R-PA)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shelby (R-AL)
Smith (R-OR)
Specter (R-PA)
Stabenow (D-MI)
Stevens (R-AK)
Sununu (R-NH)
Talent (R-MO)
Thomas (R-WY)
Thune (R-SD)
Vitter (R-LA)
Voinovich (R-OH)
Warner (R-VA)