A federal appeals court just ruled that Arab and Muslim former detainees, who faced harsh jail conditions due to their faith and ethnicity under the Bush administration, can now sue former Bush officials over their treatment.
The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court Of Appeals in New York voted not to hear the case again, leaving in place an earlier decision from a three-judge panel that will allow the plaintiffs to move their case forward.
The Bush administration is one of the worst blights in American history, or as Republicans call it “the good old days.” Thankfully, a few of their number are going to be held to account.
The plaintiffs were arrested for minor immigration violations and eventually cleared of having any connection to terrorism. After they were arrested, they were subjected to sleep deprivation and held in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day. They make the assertion that the harsh treatment, which is typical of Bush’s torture policies, was simply because of their religion or race and not because any actual evidence existed for suspicion.
The Bush administration officials that are being targeted are former Attorney General John Ashcroft, former FBI director Robert Mueller, and former Immigration and Naturalization Service commissioner James Ziglar.
The former president’s policies towards “terrorism-related” detainees were appalling. Due process was denied to many Muslim-Americans and all of them suffered unusually cruel treatment in the hysteria following the 9-11 terrorist attacks. It’s a bit poetic that this ruling to allow the plaintiffs to pursue justice comes after a great deal of anti-Muslim fear and propaganda started coming from the same party that was responsible for their persecution in the first place.
Neither the U.S. Justice Department, which represents Ashcroft and Mueller and a lawyer for Ziglar, responded to a request for comment.
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