Before it gets taken down I wanted to grab this and post it in hopes of preserving it. That is until they put the internet on lock-down.
Bush submits new terror detainee bill
By ANNE PLUMMER FLAHERTY, Associated Press Writer Fri Jul 28, 6:53 PM ETWASHINGTON - U.S. citizens suspected of terror ties might be detained indefinitely and barred from access to civilian courts under legislation proposed by the Bush administration, say legal experts reviewing an early version of the bill.
A 32-page draft measure is intended to authorize the Pentagon's tribunal system, established shortly after the 2001 terrorist attacks to detain and prosecute detainees captured in the war on terror. The tribunal system was thrown out last month by the Supreme Court.
Administration officials, who declined to comment on the draft, said the proposal was still under discussion and no final decisions had been made.
Senior officials are expected to discuss a final proposal before the Senate Armed Services Committee next Wednesday.
According to the draft, the military would be allowed to detain all "enemy combatants" until hostilities cease. The bill defines enemy combatants as anyone "engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners who has committed an act that violates the law of war and this statute."
Legal experts said Friday that such language is dangerously broad and could authorize the military to detain indefinitely U.S. citizens who had only tenuous ties to terror networks like al Qaeda.
"That's the big question ... the definition of who can be detained," said Martin Lederman, a law professor at Georgetown University who posted a copy of the bill to a Web blog.
Scott L. Silliman, a retired Air Force Judge Advocate, said the broad definition of enemy combatants is alarming because a U.S. citizen loosely suspected of terror ties would lose access to a civilian court — and all the rights that come with it. Administration officials have said they want to establish a secret court to try enemy combatants that factor in realities of the battlefield and would protect classified information.
The administration's proposal, as considered at one point during discussions, would toss out several legal rights common in civilian and military courts, including barring hearsay evidence, guaranteeing "speedy trials" and granting a defendant access to evidence. The proposal also would allow defendants to be barred from their own trial and likely allow the submission of coerced testimony.
Senior Republican lawmakers have said they were briefed on the general discussions and have some concerns but are awaiting a final proposal before commenting on specifics.
Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England are expected to discuss the proposal in an open hearing next Wednesday before the Senate Armed Services Committee. Military lawyers also are scheduled to testify Wednesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee.
The legislation is the administration's response to a June 29 Supreme Court decision, which concluded the Pentagon could not prosecute military detainees using secret tribunals established soon after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. The court ruled the tribunals were not authorized by law and violated treaty obligations under the Geneva Conventions, which established many international laws for warfare.
The landmark court decision countered long-held assertions by the Bush administration that the president did not need permission from Congress to prosecute "enemy combatants" captured in the war on terror and that al Qaeda members were not subject to Geneva Convention protections because of their unconventional status.
"In a time of ongoing armed conflict, it is neither practicable nor appropriate for enemy combatants like al Qaeda terrorists to be tried like American citizens in federal courts or courts-martial," the proposal states.
The draft proposal contends that an existing law — passed by the Senate last year after exhaustive negotiations between the White House and Sen. John McCain R-Ariz. — that bans cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment should "fully satisfy" the nation's obligations under the Geneva Conventions.
Sen. John W. Warner, R-Va., chairman of the Armed Services Committee, said Friday he expects to take up the detainee legislation in September.
This is one of the notorious 'signing statements' where Bush appears in front of a group of media and proudly declares that he is putting into force a 'new law' to protect us or bring human dignity to those being tortured and signs it. Then he shakes some hands kisses a couple babies and then walks off the stage and tears up the paper and has a good laugh. I have to wonder if there is ANYONE paying attention to what is going on, not just in America but the world? Throwing people into prison indefinitely without a shred of proof and merely being 'suspected'! Does anyone remember that the Communist movement used to imprison its political prisoners in gulags in Siberia? IS THIS ANY DIFFERENT!?!?!?
Are we really so distracted and ignorant that we are unable to comprehend what is taking place? How can people be so naive as to believe a government that acts in such a way is looking out for their best intrests? Hasn't it become clear the they are interested in no one but themselves. We are nothing more than chattel.
I realize that the general perception of 'religion' in these times is negative but these people that call themselves 'Christians' are NOT CORRECTLY REFLECTING the One they claim to belong to. It is the exact same 'ruler' that measures the occupants of the Holy Land. Those that adhere to Zionism are deceived if they believe that their deeds of wickedness shall go unpunished. The Creator's promise and covenant are made to the OBEDIENT and those that humble themselves and have a contrite spirit. Has it ever occurred to anyone that the reason that 'Israel' is having to invade Lebanon to secure fresh water is because they LORD has cursed their occupation of the land? They do not have enough food to feed their population because they steal the land of their neighbors and destroy the borders of their neighbors which IS A CURSE from the book of Deuteronomy.
Followers of Judaism that are on the right track.
Zionists are cursed with a curse and their time is running out and salvation is coming to both the land and the peoples that wait patiently for the Creator to establish HIS kingdom and banish sin and wickedness. HE sees the truth and will render justice on the nations of the world.
Be strong, it's going to get much worse before it gets better. I pray for everyone that falls under the foot of these oppressors for soon it will visit even America's shores and the world shall stand idlly by as the cries fall on deaf ears as a reward for the justice they refused to execute towards their neighbors. My prayers are with all people that obey the Creator and the innocent.