Sunday, December 23, 2007

Hoover Planned Mass Jailing in 1950

A newly declassified document shows that J. Edgar Hoover, the longtime director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, had a plan to suspend habeas corpus and imprison some 12,000 Americans he suspected of disloyalty.
Hoover wanted President Harry S. Truman to proclaim the mass arrests necessary to "protect the country against treason, espionage and sabotage." The F.B.I would "apprehend all individuals potentially dangerous" to national security, Hoover's proposal said.
In September 2006, Congress passed a law suspending habeas corpus for anyone deemed an "unlawful enemy combatant."  But the Supreme Court has reaffirmed the right of American citizens to seek a writ of habeas corpus.
The only modern precedent for Hoover's plan was the Palmer Raids of 1920, named after the attorney general at the time. The raids, executed in large part by Hoover's intelligence division, swept up thousands of people suspected of being communists and radicals.
Note that this in no way excuses the current criminal insanity. Amazing that he founded the agency in its present form in 1924, and was there all the way until 1972 - who knows how much of our current mess is because of this one batshit crazy individual.

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