Erosion



You might not have noticed. Not much media coverage of this latest erosion of freedom.

But last Tuesday, the President asserted, in rather broad language, the right of the US Government to freeze
"all property and interests in property of the following persons, that are in the United States, that hereafter come within the United States, or that are or hereafter come within the possession or control of United States persons, are blocked and may not be transferred, paid, exported, withdrawn, or otherwise dealt in: any person determined by the Secretary of the Treasury, in consultation with the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Defense,

(i) to have committed, or to pose a significant risk of committing, an act or acts of violence that have the purpose or effect of:

(A) threatening the peace or stability of Iraq or the Government of Iraq; or

(B) undermining efforts to promote economic reconstruction and political reform in Iraq or to provide humanitarian assistance to the Iraqi people;"

Why is this particular proclamation so chilling? Well, "violence" isn't defined, but to be determined by the Secretary of the Treasury in consultation with the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Defense. I could see an interpretation where the Congress, in attempting to cut funding for the war, might well seem to be threatening the peace or stability of Iraq and/or undermining efforts to promote economic reconstruction.

As near as I can determine, The White House is satisfying both (A) and (B) above.

This feels like a huge step over the line. I imagine that this proclamation will allow foreign funds in banks with US subsidiaries to be frozen in retaliation. When the military tactics draw a stalemate, bring on the economic sanctions.
blog comments powered by Disqus