December 6th, 2011 22:50 EST
Is The Occupy Movement a Ploy to Launch Martial Law?
Editor`s note: The following was sent to The SOP as a Letter to the Editor. Much of the information in the piece can be verified at Wikipedia and various U.S. Government Websites.
In the event that martial law is declared, the President will remain in office indefinitely until the need for Martial Law no longer exists? Only a unanimous vote by the United State Congress can unseat a sitting President during Martial Law?
"According to Wikipedia, Martial law is the imposition of military rule by military authorities over designated regions on an emergency basis "(usually) only temporary "when the civilian government or civilian authorities fail to function effectively (e.g., maintain order and security, and provide essential services), when there are extensive riots and protests, or when the disobedience of the law becomes widespread. In most cases, military forces are deployed to quiet the crowds, to secure government buildings and key or sensitive locations, and to maintain order."
What key factor could be the tipping point for the US and its citizens? An attack on Iran? The Occupy Wall Street Movement grows exponentially and out of control? These are just a few possibilities.
Here are some facts to consider in the event that Marital Law is imposed, "the constitution could be suspended, even more drastic full-scale martial law could be invoked. Thus elevating the highest-ranking military officer to supreme leader of the US. At which point, he would take over, or be installed, as the military governor or as head of the government, thus removing all power from the previous executive, legislative, and judicial branches of government."
"Martial law may be declared in cases of major natural disasters, however most countries use a different legal construct, such as a "state of emergency". FEMA! Martial law has also been imposed in the past during civil conflicts and in cases of occupations. Does the Occupy Wall Street Movement qualify?
Article 1, Section 9 of the U.S. Constitution states, "The Privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it."
Could this be what the 2012 political landscape will look like?
In 1878, Congress passed the Posse Comitatus Act, which forbids military involvement in domestic law enforcement without congressional approval. On October 1, 2002 United States Northern Command was established to provide command and control of Department of Defense homeland defense efforts and to coordinate defense support of civil authorities.
The National Guard is an exception, since unless federalized, they are under the control of state governors. This was changed briefly: Public Law 109-364, or the "John Warner Defense Authorization Act of 2007" (H.R.5122), was signed by President Bush on October 17, 2006, and allowed 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.
The President signed the Defense Authorization Act of 2008 on January 13, 2008. However, Section 1068 in the enacted 2008 defense authorization bill (H.R. 4986: "National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008") repealed this section of PL 109-364.
The perceived need for the law arose from the scope and number of laws granting special powers to the executive in times of national emergency (or public danger).
At least two constitutional rights are subject to revocation during a state of emergency:
Â· The right of habeas corpus, under Article 1, Section 9;
Â· The right to a grand jury for members of the National Guard when in actual service, under Fifth Amendment.
In addition, many provisions of statutory law are contingent on a state of national emergency, as many as 500 by one count.
"The United States has been in a state of national emergency continuously since September 14, 2001, when the Bush administration invoked it premised on the September 11 attacks. In September 2010, President Barack Obama informed Congress that the State of National Emergency in effect since September 14, 2001, will be extended another year. The National Emergencies Act grants various powers to the president during times of emergency and was intended to prevent a president from declaring a state of emergency of indefinite duration."
"The National Security and Homeland Security Presidential Directive (National Security Presidential Directive NSPD 51/Homeland Security Presidential Directive HSPD-20, sometimes called simply "Executive Directive 51" for short), created and signed by United States President George W. Bush on May 4, 2007, is a Presidential Directive which claims power to execute procedures for continuity of the federal government in the event of a "catastrophic emergency". Such an emergency is construed as "any incident, regardless of location, that results in extraordinary levels of mass casualties, damage, or disruption severely affecting the U.S. population, infrastructure, environment, economy, or government functions."
"The unclassified portion of the directive was posted on the White House website on May 9, 2007, without any further announcement or press briefings, although Special Assistant to George W. Bush Gordon Johndroe answered several questions on the matter when asked about it by members of the press in early June 2007."
As Americans or anyone that cares about freedom and democracy, we all need to educate ourselves about our rights and about our leaders. So, when and if we get another opportunity to choose a president and other political leaders we will be able to make a sound and educated decision. Hopefully, one that will bring us all closer together.