Obama signs away your legal protections

With the signing of an under-publicized amendment to Executive Order 12425, Barack Obama has
fundamentally altered your constitutional rights. His actions are undermining your rights to
protect personal privacy from a foreign internationalist police agency named Interpol. A
one-paragraph executive order may seem inconsequential to many, but this action has
far-reaching implications and threatens the sovereignty of America.

Obama’s secretive executive order amended an order issued by President Reagan in 1983.
Reagan’s order recognized Interpol as an international organization and gave it privileges
and immunities commonly extended to foreign diplomats. Reagan opened the door to allow
Interpol to operate in partnership with the U.S. but with significant constitutional
safeguards. Specifically, Interpol’s property and assets remained subject to search and
seizure by American law enforcement, and its archived records remained subject to public
scrutiny under provisions of the Freedom of Information Act. Interpol had to answer to
the FBI and U.S. courts under Reagan’s order. These safeguards were stripped away by
Obama’s action the week before Christmas without debate or explanation. Obama picked
the holiday season to make this radical change, to minimize media coverage.

This order marks a significant change in federal policy and usurps the constitutional
power of our government by yielding it to an international organization. Michael van
Der Galien writes, “This foreign law-enforcement organization can operate free of an
important safeguard against government and abuse. Property and assets, including the
organization’s records, cannot now be searched or seized. Their physical operational
locations are now immune from U.S. legal and investigative authorities.”

Obama has given an international organization unsupervised freedom to investigate
Americans on our own soil without recourse or the supervision of our own government.

Obama has given an international organization unsupervised freedom to investigate
Americans on our own soil without recourse or the supervision of our own government.

Andy McCarthy writing for the National Review asks some very significant questions:
“Why would we elevate an international police force above American law? Why would we
immunize an international police force from the limitations that constrain the FBI and
other American law-enforcement agencies? Why is it suddenly necessary to have, within
the Justice Department, a repository for stashing government files which, therefore,
will be beyond the ability of Congress, American law-enforcement, the media and the
American people to scrutinize?”

Interpol is the enforcement arm of the International Criminal Court, or ICC. The
United States never signed onto the Rome Treaty, which created the ICC, because of
the potential for abuse by foreign interests. Obama has signaled he may sign the
treaty over these objections and subject Americans to prosecution overseas in the
ICC. This is harmful for two reasons. First, the U.S. Constitution clearly states
that it is the supreme law of our land, and allowing the ICC to supersede the U.S.
Constitution violates America’s sovereignty. Second, the War on Terror is unpopular
with Europeans, and the ICC may attempt to prosecute heroic American soldiers with
trumped-up war crimes. Obama is putting brave American men and women at grave risk.

An added wrinkle to this executive order is that Interpol’s operations center for
the United States is housed within our own Justice Department. Many of the agents
are Americans who work under the aegis of Interpol. This order has potentially created
the new civilian security force that Obama proposed during his campaign. This group of
law-enforcement officials is no longer subject to the restraints enshrined in the U.S.

The order guarantees that Interpol officers have immunity from prosecution for crimes
they may commit in the United States. Ironically, some Interpol nations are attempting
to try American intelligence agents for their work abroad in the War on Terror.

This order shows blatant disregard for the U.S. Constitution. While Obama is extending
due process rights to terrorists he is weakening those same rights for American citizens.
If a citizen were to be prosecuted by Interpol, their newly granted immunity would
interfere with the discovery process. Since Interpol files are immune to disclosure,
a citizen could be denied his right to see the information used to prosecute him or her.

Obama’s executive order has done more to weaken civil liberties than the much-maligned
Patriot Act. The silence in the mainstream media on this issue should scare all
freedom-loving Americans. Obama just signed away parts of our precious legal protections.

By Floyd Brown, Western Journalism

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