October 18, 2006
RIP: Habeas Corpus

With the President's signature on the Military Commissions Act of 2006, this country enters a shameful period of disregard for human rights and due process of law. Those non-citizens the administration has deemed "unlawful enemy combatants" -- with no proof -- will no longer have the right to challenge their detentions before a United States Court. They may be subjected to inhumane treatment because the adminstration refuses to rule out the practices of torture.

I can only hope that this law will have a swift route to the Supreme Court, and that it will swiftly be declared unconstitutional by a Court that still remembers the values upon which this nation was founded. The way to protect and preserve freedom is not to devalue it.

Posted by Wendy at October 18, 2006 10:09 AM | TrackBack

Bush will stop at nothing to elevate his sorry-ass fiasco in Iraq to the status of a war for national security. There is literally nothing he will not sacrifice to save his ass.

As he has said,

"You never know what your history is going to be like until long after you're gone."

There is nothing he will not classify, arrest, torture, invade, bomb, pervert, fabricate, or misrepresent to delay that reckoning with history.

Posted by: Vigilante on October 18, 2006 11:30 AM

glenn greenwald says unlawful enemy combatants applies to u.s. citizens as well:


Posted by: HeresTomWithTheWeather on October 18, 2006 09:38 PM

GLeen Greenwald is correct. The actual text of what was passed is:

(1) UNLAWFUL ENEMY COMBATANT.—(A) The term ‘unlawful
enemy combatant’ means— ‘‘(i) a person who has engaged in hostilities or who has purposefully and materially supported hostilities against the United States or its co-belligerents who is not a lawful enemy combatant (including a person who is part of the Taliban, al Qaeda, or associated forces); or ‘‘(ii) a person who, before, on, or after the date of the enactment of the Military Commissions Act of 2006, has been determined to be an unlawful enemy combatant by a Combatant Status Review Tribunal or another competent
tribunal established under the authority of the President or the Secretary of Defense.

There is nothing in there that specifies the person must be a foreign national.

I hope the supreme court wakes up to what this really is, a way for Bush to make anyone he wants to simply "go away" and be tortured until they confess to something.

What is ludicrous is the part about the Geneva convention: "(g) GENEVA CONVENTIONS NOT ESTABLISHING SOURCE OF RIGHTS.—No alien unlawful enemy combatant subject to trial by military commission under this chapter may invoke the Geneva Conventions as a source of rights."

How can the other countries of the world allow the US to simply declare that the Geneva Convention is no longer in force for anyone they capture and torture?

Posted by: Mark on October 19, 2006 01:22 PM

Yes the Geneva Convention has been used in regard to our troops in every war we've fought in... wait.. korea...no. Vietnam... no. Desert Storm... nope. bosnia... no. somilia... no. Afganistan... no. Iraq... not a chance. So my question is why is it such a crime that we apply the same rules to them as they apply to us? I am not saying that this act is a good one for U.S. citizens however, your elected representives are the ones who passed it. If you are truly upset about it, contact them.

Posted by: Robert on October 19, 2006 05:07 PM

Yes, there are terrible parts of the bill that apply to American citizens as well as aliens. The deletion of habeas corpus protection applies only to non-citizens (at this time).

Thanks Robert, I do contact my elected representatives.

Posted by: Wendy on October 20, 2006 09:30 AM
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