An MSNBC story about Atty Gen. Ashcroft's appearance before Congress today reported him saying "argued that no one can, or even should, say exactly where the presidentâ€™s war powers end because the goal is victory and national survival."
This idea of "National Survival" being at stake strikes me as key in the debate over "preemptive war", USAPA, indefinite detentions and so forth. If you believe that the very survival of our country is at stake, then many things are justifiable. If you don't believe it, many things our government is doing are scary.
Tomeboy and I have just started this discussion/debate on a thread off of his journal, but I'm hoping to invite other opinions, on both sides on the questions:
Can al-Qaeda destroy America?
What does "destroy" mean? (physical, psychological, loss of freedom of action?)
Are there measures of survivability?
Those of us who try to live by either "Live free or die" or "Trust in God, not princes" will have to come to terms with this deep reservoir of fear behind the phrase "Our national survival is at stake!"
Personal note to Tomeboy - I will make a direct response to your comments later, but I was intending to issue a call for discussion even before I got your last reply. Time ran too short for me to do both. - Daniel