Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Justice Department's Nazi-hunting Office?

We are according to many at war with terrorism. We have hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants in our country. Our lives have been changed forever and things like the Patriot Act are being done supposedly to protect us. Yet, believe it or not in this time when the focus should be on terrorists and homeland security we have a special investigation unit of the Justice Department that is hunting down former Nazis.

OsypFirishchak, 86, came to the United States after World War II, settled in Chicago and obtained American citizenship. But the Justice Department's Nazi-hunting Office of Special Investigations says he lied on his visa application and broke other rules.

Even if they could prove he was a Nazi back then, which according to CNN:

Government attorneys acknowledged they have only a smattering of direct evidence that specific acts allegedly were committed by Firishchak. But they say they can prove he was part of the auxiliary police throughout the war and that the unit was instrumental in carrying out the Holocaust in Ukraine.

So what? Has he participated in hate crimes here or assisted Nazis in participating in terrorist activities? Do we really need a special investigation unit of the Justice Department to hunt down 86 year old men to try to have them deported?

People do things they are not later proud of during wars. This many years later is it really worth the effort, time, and money to facilitate some type of revenge for actions that happened that long ago? Don't we have more important things to worry about? That's even if he is guilty which chances are he may be innocent. When I think of the real cases out there right now that are urgent and pressing? Things like this one make me realize why we need a much smaller government, it's obvious it is out of control.


Cyberseaer said...

Yeah, the guy's old. Most likely on all kinds of meds. What? He might have a few years to live, five at the most. There are so many more pressing issues in today's times. Why bother try war criminals to have them deported on a war that the anniversery of it's end is getting close to the age of SSI payments?


if this man did partake in the horrible acts that have scarred the human race permanently, not to mention the millions of lives slaughter because they thought differently, acted differently, or prayed to a different god, then this man should be tried, and if convicted, deported for the world court to decide his fate. Justice demands that the process takes place. There is a reason why their is no time limit on murder. To commit an act so terrible as to take a live just to do so, is an act that the one who commited it should face trial.

With your thinking Lisa, the man who was convicted recently for the murders in MS back in the sixties was doing his part in an act of wasted time. That murder was committed over forty years ago. And he was an old man as well. If this trial was just as important, why isn't an act of genocide that happenned sixty years ago just as important to be brought to court?

Even if this old man dies during the process, at least people we know that this country dosn't forget about the horrors of yeasteryear and will help punish those who are still alive. I don't care if this guy spends only a few hours of jailtime before he dies. Justice will have been served and closure and come for those who have waited for it.

Imagine a crime that happened to your family and the police couldn't find the person who did it until 65 years later. Then the DA didn't take the case because the suspect was old with a couple of years to live. Wouldn't that enflame your or your family's anger. Wouldn't you want to demand justice?

For anyone who reads this and it hits a little too close to home, I am sorry. My point wasn't to make anyone relive ugly feelings and emotions. It was to remind us that justice is part of a civilized world. Without it, anarchy is just right around the corner.

At times, I am accused of being simple minded and looking at things black and white, right and wrong, good and evil. But it is my belief that if a people takes part in a crime, that person must be found and face trial. A person must attone for the crimes he has committed. Sometimes, in the legal system, that doesn't always happen. But we must try.

If we do not, why follow any rules at all.

Lisa Renee said...

C, I actually did think the trying or should I say re-trying of the case down south was a waste of time and effort too.

Let me try to explain where I'm coming from. I am not advocating people not having to pay for their crimes. However to me it is about resources and priorities. If we get to the point in time when missing children are found, terrorist cells identified, illegal immigrants especially those who have committed recent violent crimes have been arrested/deported and recent murders solved with those punished then I would most certainly support going way back into the archives of history to track down these people from long ago.

But we don't have the resources, the agents/lawyers, secretaries, etc that are being used for cases like this could be used for current situation cases that should be a priority. Thousands of parents at this very moment do not know where their children are, if they are alive or dead. So to me, a special department to track down this type of case is a misuse of government funds given what I've written above.

That's the basis of where this feeling comes from.


Cyberseaer said...

Lisa, they will never be enough resources in the world to catch every bad person that has committed a crime. My heart goes out to every parent whose child is missing. To all lost a loved one due to violence, recent or long ago. In a perfect world, Ted Kennedy would have done time in jail and all who committed a crime would be punished. Infuriately that is not the world we live in.

I understand that priorities must be set. But when does a recent murder become a cold case? Who decides the time frame? Who is the one to tell the victim’s family and friends that the time allotted has been spent and now it is a case that will only waste money and time?

I agree that we must concentrate on crimes and issues that are in our face today, but with over a fourth of a billion people in this country, 30 to 40 people can be borrowed to work on an old case.

I see here you are coming from and I understand the feeling you have. But, we, as a people, must continue to look for criminals in cases that are 5, 10, 20, 50 years old until the suspect is caught and tried or it is proven that the suspect is dead.

No easy answers, but like I said before, we must try. In trying, hopefully a person won’t kill another if he thinks that the law will not stop in its pursuit, no matter how long it takes.

Lisa Renee said...

C, I see your point, looks like this is going to be one of our agree to disagree topics.

I feel like those 30 to 40 could also be the difference between a child found or not being found.

Rounding up almost 90 old men some who are on their death beds already who after they were no longer soldiers never did any wrong just doesn't make sense.

They didn't create the holocaust, they were following orders, and some of them there is a huge amount of doubt as to any crimes being committed. If they were huge masterminds in helping Hitler or responsible for some large part of World War II than it would be easier to justify.

I look at what our country has done to innocent people in other nations thru the years and I wonder, who gives us the right to decide this is wrong when we have the blood of innocents on our hands as well. Horrible things happen to people during wars, innocents die. We justify these deaths as unfortunate but necessary, yet that is only because we feel we are in the right. Those men serving in the German Army probably felt they were serving their nation because they were told Germany was in the right....

Me4Prez said...

I think it would be different if he was one of the architects of the Nazi plans or just a follower. I met a colonel from the Nazi army when I was in the Army who said that everyone knew waht was going on, but you didn't fight for that. You fought to protect your country and because you didn't have many other choices.

US troops have committed crimes in combat and done horrific things also. I am not comparing them to Nazis, but if justice is the only precedent that matters, what would keep them from being tried also in the future

Lisa Renee said...

That's the direction I take this one too me4. I could clearly understand why they would be interested in say Hitlers number 3 or 4 guy, but not just foot soldiers that were doing nothing more than following orders. If you disobeyed an order there you'd typically be shot on the spot so it's not like some of them felt they had options.

My great-grandmother on my mother's side came here to escape World War II, I know some of her family died in the holocaust. I also know some of them were also German soldiers. Thankfully they are all dead now else who knows when the DOJ would have gotten to them.