Following a court decision striking down as unconstitutional a provision in the National Defense Authorization Act ("NDAA"), President Barack Obama, who signed the NDAA into law, filed a defamation lawsuit against the plaintiffs in the case. In his complaint, Obama specifically alleged that the plaintiffs, including activists Noam Chomsky, Chris Hedges and Cornell West, were intentionally "making him look bad."
The NDAA provision blocked by Obama-appointed Judge Katherine Forrest of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York allowed for the indefinite military detention of any individual, including an American citizen, considered to be a terrorist, without charge or trial, in any location.
"The provision is clearly constitutional," said Obama. "Mitt Romney and I don't agree on much, but as Mitt himself said, it just makes sense that the American government has the right to figure out who could be a terrorist and then throw those people in jail somewhere and keep them there as long as it takes to keep the rest of us safe. And if that's forever, so be it. And it's also appropriate to use enhanced interrogation techniques to find more terrorists and throw them in jail, too."
Obama added that by not requiring that these "terrorists" ever be charged or tried, the U.S. would save millions, if not billions, in litigation fees.
"And our country needs that money," Obama noted. "J.P. Morgan, the best-managed bank in the world, is not looking good. AIG still hasn't fully recovered from the economic crisis, and who knows what's going to happen with Bank of America. These organizations are too big to fail, and we need to keep funds in reserve in case another bailout is necessary."
He added, "I mean seriously, would people rather bail out suspected terrorists or our nation's cherished financial institutions?"
The President further stated that Chomsky, Hedges, West and the other plaintiffs challenging the NDAA were probably terrorists themselves.
"Why else would they try to make me look like an idiot in public?" he told a group of supporters in New York City. "Terrorists have become much more sophisticated in their methods. It's no longer just suicide bombers and controlled demolition of - I mean, terrorist planes crashing into - the Twin Towers. They'll even use our court system to try to undermine me and my authority."
Obama speculated that in addition to having terrorist motives, Cornell West very likely chose to participate in the lawsuit challenging the NDAA out of jealousy and spite regarding Obama's political success in becoming the first African-American president.
"People can be so petty," said the President. "And not to stereotype, but especially black people."
In his defamation action, Obama seeks $1 billion in damages, a public apology from the plaintiffs, and an injunction requiring West, Chomsky, Hedges and the other plaintiffs to "just be cool to him."
Judge Katherine Forrest was unavailable to comment on the President's lawsuit; her staff told reporters that the judge had been unexpectedly detained in Guantanamo Bay.