On the questionable patriotism of those who defend foreigners who kill Americans...

>> Monday, March 08, 2010

The facts were self-evident: five Americans brutally killed by foreign operatives acting on American soil. Nobody could dispute the allegation, and the foreign perpetrators were quickly imprisoned while the five dead Americans were properly revered as American heroes, dead before their time.

The question of what to do with the foreign operatives was a difficult one. Although most would have been happy to see the perpetrators summarily executed, the government insisted on going to the trouble, expense and risk of a public trial, notwithstanding the fact that the defendants were backed by a cunning and resourceful regime that easily could have financed acts of violence and public terror to free their agents during the courthouse proceedings. And it cannot be said too many times that the defendants' guilt was as plain as their victims' blood on the cold ground.

It was initially impossible to find counsel for the defendants, until a wealthy Harvard-educated attorney volunteered to represent them. He was, as you may expect, a publicity hound and rabble-rouser whose claims to fame eventually included radicalism, rejection of political custom and tradition, and eventually outright treason and promotion of insurrection and violence against those tasked with enforcing the rule of law and preservation of property--a classic Yankee liberal, you might say. It should be no shock, then, that this man would latch himself onto a public controversy, regardless of whether or not he actually took foreign bribes to do so, as he was accused of doing (although nothing was ever proven).

What is shocking is the lack of shame he showed in attacking the victims of the ugly and despicable acts of his clients. Claiming that his clients had merely been exercising self defense (!!), he told a jury:

We have entertained a great variety of phrases to avoid calling this sort of people [the victims] a mob. The plain English is... it was most probably a motley rabble.... And why we should scruple to call such a people a mob, I can't conceive, unless the name is too respectable for them.

And so he chose to defame American patriots while advancing the interests of their murderers.

The blood of the martyrs cried out, but did they receive justice? Out of nine defendants, the leader and six of his followers were acquitted and two were convicted of a lesser charge, manslaughter. Laughing all the way to the bank, their attorney was rewarded by several plum political jobs and cushy high-level government appointments.

These rewards culminated, specifically, in being selected by an elitist group of political insiders to fill the position of first Vice-President Of The United States, and subsequently the position of second President Of The United States.

(Yeah... I'm sure you didn't know where I was going with this. Can't blame me for trying.)

As for why I'm bringing this up at all, and now? No good reason. No good reason at all.


Warner (aka ntsc) Monday, March 8, 2010 at 8:48:00 AM EST  

I saw where you were going with it, but didn't know it would be Adams.

I suspect it would not be hard to find other similar cases stretched through out US history.

Janiece Monday, March 8, 2010 at 9:59:00 AM EST  

I saw that on TRMS, and thought, "Now that's some shameful shit."


And I knew it was Adams, as I read the book and saw the mini-series (both of which were excellent, BTW).

Nathan Monday, March 8, 2010 at 10:17:00 AM EST  

I actually got about two paragraphs into writing a post on this subject and then figured you'd chime in with a much better take on it. You didn't disappoint. I totally forgot about the Adams connection.

Rachael Monday, March 8, 2010 at 6:15:00 PM EST  

I wouldn't be surprised if a lot of people didn't know this about John Adams. I never learned of it in regular history classes in public school. The reason I knew immediately who you were talking about (and what incident) was because in the one honors history class I had in junior high school, we actually did a (much abridged) reenactment of the trial.

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