Hey, George Clooney, wake up! "Above the Law: U.S. Crimes during The War on Terror | World Policy Institute"

The U.S. and Israel have routinely conducted acts of torture, from water-boarding, stress positions, sleep deprivations, shackling, sexual humiliation and beatings—all in violation of the Anti-Torture statute, which applies for actions outside U.S. territory. In Israel, the "Shabah" position is still used, despite being banned in a 1999 Israeli Supreme Court decision. Like the parsing of language during court interrogations, the Israel Security Agency, whose officials have never been prosecuted, simply alter the precise position used from past practices in order to avoid committing criminal acts—even though torture is still being used, as Israeli human rights groups like B'Tselem and the Public Committee against Torture in Israel (PACATI) have documented.

This problem is also demonstrated by the reckless 840-odd detentions at Guantánamo, where no more than 20 percent had committed a crime of any kind, according to studies by UC Berkeley School of Law and Seton Hall Law School in Newark. President Obama's own Guantánamo Task Force in mid-2009 also concluded that only 100 out of the 850 detainees held there since 2002 needed to be detained. About 150 detainees still remain there and none of the hundreds of innocents who were unjustly detained and tortured have received reparations as required by the UN Convention against Torture and U.S. law.

Not one U.S. or Israeli official, other than low-ranking soldiers or police, have ever been prosecuted or held liable for complicity with torture.


Obama's claim that he outlawed torture is similarly weak. Torture by U.S. government officials still happens under the Obama administration. The case of suspected Wikileaks leaker Bradley Manning is one such example. Even before Manning was charged with espionage for his alleged theft of classified documents given to Wikileaks, he was held for months, without clothes, under solitary confinement. What is more troubling is the increased deaths of Afghan civilians due to drone attacks by the U.S. Under Obama, drone air strikes have intensified, killing more civilians and creating more resentment from Afghan partners for the U.S. presence in the country. Recently, a U.S. airstrike killed 5 children and their mother. This war on terrorism on the cheap, is not only criminal and immoral, it is also counter-productive.

Read the whole article: Above the Law: U.S. Crimes during The War on Terror | World Policy Institute.


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According to the IRS, "Know the law: Avoid political campaign intervention":

Tax-exempt section 501(c)(3) organizations like churches, universities, and hospitals must follow the law regarding political campaigns. Unfortunately, some don't know the law.

Under the Internal Revenue Code, all section 501(c)(3) organizations are prohibited from participating in any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office. The prohibition applies to campaigns at the federal, state and local level.

Violation of this prohibition may result in denial or revocation of tax-exempt status and the imposition of certain excise taxes. Section 501(c)(3) private foundations are subject to additional restrictions.

Political Campaign Intervention

Political campaign intervention includes any activities that favor or oppose one or more candidates for public office. The prohibition extends beyond candidate endorsements.

Contributions to political campaign funds, public statements of support or opposition (verbal or written) made by or on behalf of an organization, and the distribution of materials prepared by others that support or oppose any candidate for public office all violate the prohibition on political campaign intervention.

Factors in determining whether a communication results in political campaign intervention include the following:

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Many religious organizations believe, as we do, that the above constitutes a violation of the First Amendment of the US Constitution.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

That said, we make the following absolutely clear here:

  • The Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project not only do not endorse any candidate for any secular office, we say that Christianity forbids voting in such elections.
  • Furthermore, when we discuss any public-office holder's position, policy, action or inaction, we definitely are not encouraging anyone to vote for that office holder's position.
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  • It is impossible for us to fully evangelize and proselytize without directly discussing the pros and cons of public policy and the positions of secular-office holders, hence the unconstitutionality of the IRS code on the matter.
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  • When Caesar says to us that unless we shut up about the unrighteousness of Caesar's policies and practices, we will lose the ability of people who donate to us to declare their donations as deductions on their federal and state income-tax returns, we say to Caesar that we cannot shut up while exercising our religion in a very reasonable way.
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  • It's not freedom of religion if they tax it.

And when they were come to Capernaum, they that received tribute money came to Peter, and said, Doth not your master pay tribute? He saith, Yes. And when he was come into the house, Jesus prevented him, saying, What thinkest thou, Simon? of whom do the kings of the earth take custom or tribute? of their own children, or of strangers? Peter saith unto him, Of strangers. Jesus saith unto him, Then are the children free. (Matthew 17:24-26)

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  • Tom Usher

    About Tom Usher

    Employment: 2008 – present, website developer and writer. 2015 – present, insurance broker.

    Education: Arizona State University, Bachelor of Science in Political Science. City University of Seattle, graduate studies in Public Administration.

    Volunteerism: 2007 – present, president of the Real Liberal Christian Church and Christian Commons Project.

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