2007

There are several issues/moments that I believe will define 2007:  Bhutto assassination, Iran intelligence report, Elections in Central and South America, Putin, and of course Iraq.

The most overlooked story of 2007 was the conflict and unrest in eastern Africa.  Over 1 million Somalians were displaced this year.  Added to Somalia’s continuing internal unrest was the intervention of the United States, through its own actions and through Ethiopia’s involvement.  Besides Ethiopia’s involvement in Somalia, they were also involved in a revived conflict with Eritrea.

So that I don’t repeat the previous posts, I’ll add the two biggest international stories originating out of Miami:

1)  The continuing Haitian and Cuban refugee crisis.  This includes the 100+ Haitians that came ashore in South Florida in the spring.  These refugees were detained for months without ever being released to local family members.  Most have now been deported to Haiti.

2)  The mistrial in the LIberty City 7 case.  These men, from one of the most economically depressed areas of Miami, were accused of supporting Al Qaeda and conspiring to blow up the Sears tower.  Their defense was that they saw the chance to ask for thousands of dollars and really had no intent to follow through with any actions.  One of the seven was acquitted.  He is now detained in a Georgia detention facility facing deportation charges, despite being a legal permanent resident for over a decade.  Due to the fact that immigration proceedings are a civil matter, he can face deportation on the terrorism charges under a burden of proof that is less than that of a criminal proceeding.  There is no double jeopardy protection, because of he is not being retried on criminal grounds. (More to come on this topic in a later post). 

2008

I hope that the biggest story of 2008 will be a major Supreme Court decision addressing the Guantanamo detainees.  Since I am undecided as to who I will support in the Presidential election, I hope the Supreme Court will create a broad precedent that will guide and restrain the next President.  If we have learned anything over the past year (or seven) its that an overactive judiciary is better than an unconstrained executive.

Personally I am hoping to travel more than I was able to in the last year.  Taking the Bar exam and starting a new job restricted my ability to go overseas this year.

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