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Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts

Amnesty International has put together the nuts and bolts of the Military Commission bill passed by both Houses:

Among other things, the Act will:

  • Strip the US courts of jurisdiction to hear or consider habeas corpus appeals challenging the lawfulness or conditions of detention of anyone held in US custody as an "enemy combatant". Judicial review of cases would be severely limited. The law would apply retroactively, and thus could result in more than 200 pending appeals filed on behalf of Guantánamo detainees being thrown out of court.
  • Permit the executive to convene military commissions to try "alien unlawful enemy combatants", as determined by the executive under a dangerously broad definition, in trials that would provide foreign nationals so labeled with a lower standard of justice than US citizens accused of the same crimes. This would violate the prohibition on the discriminatory application of fair trial rights.
  • Permit the use in military commission trials of evidence extracted under cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.
  • Give the military commissions the power to hand down death sentences after trials that did not meet international standards.

  • Permit the executive to determine who is an "enemy combatant" under any "competent tribunal" established by the executive, and endorse the Combatant Status Review Tribunal (CSRT), the wholly inadequate administrative procedure that has been employed in Guantánamo to review individual detentions.
    Prohibit any person from invoking the Geneva Conventions or their protocols as a source of rights in any action in any US court.
  • Narrow the scope of the War Crimes Act by not expressly criminalizing acts that constitute "outrages upon personal dignity, particularly humiliating and degrading treatment" banned under international law. Amnesty International believes that the USA has routinely failed to respect the human dignity of detainees in the "war on terror".
  • Endorse the administration's "war paradigm" - under which the USA has selectively applied the laws of war and rejected international human rights law. The legislation would backdate the "war on terror" to before the 11 September 2001 in order to be able to try individuals in front of military commissions for "war crimes" committed before that date.
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  • Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#3)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 09:08:46 AM EST
    And when one of our European allies takes a wanted terrorist into custody, what are the odds that their government will be unable to turn him over to us, because their laws prohibit extradition to a jurisdiction that does not grant basic rights to the accused?

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#5)
    by theologicus on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 09:27:47 AM EST
    Amnesty International also points the way forward: REPEAL How sad that it will take so long for this to happen Amnesty Internaitonal: USA: Congress rubber stamps torture and other abuses
    By passing the Military Commissions Act, the United States Congress has, in effect, given its stamp of approval to human rights violations committed by the USA in the "war on terror". This legislation leaves the USA squarely on the wrong side of international law, and has turned bad executive policy into bad domestic law. Amnesty International will campaign for repeal of this act and fully expects the constitutionality of this legislation to be challenged in the courts. In the "war on terror", the US administration has resorted to secret detention, enforced disappearance, prolonged incommunicado detention, indefinite detention without charge, arbitrary detention, and torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment. Thousands of detainees remain in indefinite military detention in US custody in Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantánamo Bay. Congress has failed these detainees and their families. President Bush has defended the CIA's use of secret detention and in the debates over the Military Commissions Act, members of Congress have done the same. This policy clearly violates international law.


    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#1)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 09:31:05 AM EST
    Endorse the administration's "war paradigm" - under which the USA has selectively applied the laws of war and rejected international human rights law.
    And did they get you to trade your heroes for ghosts? Hot ashes for trees? Hot air for a cool breeze? Cold comfort for change? And did you exchange a walk on part in the war for a lead role in a cage? ---edger

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#2)
    by scribe on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 09:31:05 AM EST
    This battle's moving to the Courts. For this, I (quoting Junior high school civics) have one thing to say: "Judges read election results, too."

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#4)
    by Dadler on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 09:31:05 AM EST
    Bush supporters rejoice!! Your Orwellian version of reality has been validated by the Congress of Fools. Just when it seems our standards and credibility can sink no lower, we add some weights and have at it. Where are the Bush supporters who are praising the courage of all the innocent and tortured prisoners caught up in our madness. If a soldier is brave, how much braver is an innocent toture victim -- whose abuse and degradation, according to the administration's logic, are as necessary to keep us safe and secure as the soldiers job. Jim? Narius? J. Robertson? Wolfowitz? Care to pony up a few bucks to the family of an innocent victim of our new gulag system? Without those innocent victims, we could never sweep up all the guilty, right? You should be honoring these people and their horrible sacrifice in the bleak American dungeons. Thank them for their suffering, please. If it's really necessary, it deserves thanks, not apologies. --Dadler

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#6)
    by Gabriel Malor on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 09:31:05 AM EST
    This is an example of Amnesty (and many Democrats) continuing to argue in bad faith. Amnesty says one thing and the actual text of the bill says something else. Who are we to believe? Let me lay it out for you. Amnesty: "Strip the US courts of jurisdiction to hear or consider habeas corpus appeals challenging the lawfulness or conditions of detention of anyone held in US custody as an "enemy combatant"." S.3930 (the Bill): Sec. 6 (a) `(e)(1) No court, justice, or judge shall have jurisdiction to hear or consider an application for a writ of habeas corpus filed by or on behalf of an alien detained by the United States who-- `(A) is currently in United States custody; and `(B) has been determined by the United States to have been properly detained as an enemy combatant or is awaiting such determination. `(2) Except as provided in paragraphs (2) and (3) of section 1005(e) of the Detainee Treatment Act of 2005 (10 U.S.C. 801 note), no court, justice, or judge shall have jurisdiction to hear or consider any other action against the United States or its agents relating to any aspect of the detention, transfer, treatment, trial, or conditions of confinement of an alien detained by the United States who-- [meets the same conditions as (A) and (B) above].

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#8)
    by Joe Bob on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 09:35:51 AM EST
    Likewise, I wonder if at some time in the future people like Bush and Rumsfeld might have to think twice about where they travel abroad. The could quite possibly deserve the same treatment that Pinochet has gotten.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#11)
    by theologicus on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 09:49:59 AM EST
    Amnesty International is guilty of no "bad faith." They simply read carefully and know what they're talking about. Here's what Professor Jack Balkin of the Yale Law School has just posted on his website. This is an excerpt from a longer post. Does the Military Commissions Act apply to citizens? Jack Balkin
    Many people have been asking about whether the new MCA applies to citizens. The answer seems pretty straightforward. (1) Yes, a few parts of the MCA do apply to citizens; and (2) the MCA is probably unconstitutional in many of its applications to citizens; and (3) some constitutional applications of the MCA to citizens are deeply troubling. A U.S. citizen may be an unlawful enemy combatant under section 948a. Section 948a(1) defines an unlawful enemy combatant as "(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." Section 948b states that "[t]his chapter establishes procedures governing the use of military commissions to try alien unlawful enemy combatants." So the MCA's procedures apply only to aliens; not to citizens. Nevertheless, Congress has declared that persons falling into the definition in 948a are unlawful enemy combatants whether they are aliens or citizens. Why does this matter, if the military commission procedures in the MCA don't apply to citizens? The answer is that the government might seek to detain citizens as unlawful enemy combatants using the new definition in section 948a.


    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#7)
    by Punchy on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 09:55:31 AM EST
    What's this do to travel by foreigners to the U.S.? Would any sane Eyptian, Syrian, or Lebanese citizen dare come to American for buisness or vacation, knowing that at any time, for any reason, they could be picked up and detained forever? Seriously--this rightly should completely dry up travel to/from those nations in the Middle East. There now exists the very possiblity of being met at the airport by the CIA and never seeing one's family again...

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#9)
    by yank in london on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 09:55:31 AM EST
    I never thought I'd say this but today I am trully ashamed of my country. I weep for America. I weep for the dream of America.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#10)
    by kdog on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 09:55:31 AM EST
    Hey..at least they covered their criminal arses. If America is changed forever for the worse...oh well, their arses are covered. I hope Jesus tells Bush how angry he is during their next chat. No way Jesus is pleased with us right now.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#12)
    by Dadler on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 09:55:31 AM EST
    Gabriel, How on earth will you ever know anything about any of this, when the American people will never be granted access to information? This is a grand charade. You and I are children, we cannot handle the big bad truth, that is the reality here. Face it. These are secret proceedings and prisons for a primary reason: so we can get away with abusing people and treating them as less than human. And retroactively pardon anyone who broke the law before we f*cked the law into a bastard. Chide Amnesty all you want (what have you done for political prisoners in foreign countries lately?), but you miss the entire point. By miles. We are throwing far too many people into bottomless pits, and folks like you don't seem concerened at all, as long as those folks are far away and out of sight. And when they are finally found innocent and, if they're lucky, tossed out of prison like garbage, wounded and broken, what will you do for them? Nothing. Very humane of us.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#13)
    by Peaches on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 10:01:04 AM EST
    Patrick Leahy at Democracy Now today
    it grieves me to think that three decades in this body that I stand here in the Senate, knowing that we're thinking of doing this. It is so wrong. It is unconstitutional. It is un-American. It is designed to ensure the Bush-Cheney administration will never again be embarrassed by a United States Supreme Court decision reviewing its unlawful abuses of power. The Supreme Court said, 'You abused your power.' He said, 'Ha, we'll fix that. We have a rubber stamp, a rubber stamp, Congress, that will just set that aside and give us power that nobody, no king or anybody else set foot in this land, ever thought of having.'
    I don't need to add my voice to the disappointment, but it has vbeen predictable. 34 dems voted against it. THat is 34 dems willing to take the heat that the adminsitration threatened them with - and they did threaten them. This means 34 dems aren't afraid of Rove/Cheney anymore and think the AMerican people will back them. This is a good sign. Things are changing. Attitudes are changing. This is an awful bill, though. Why? Leahy again
    Now, habeas corpus was first brought in the Magna Carta in the 1200s. It's been a tenet of our rights as Americans. And what they're saying is that if you're an alien, even if you're in the United States legally, a legal alien, may have been here ten years, fifteen years, twenty years legally, if a determination is made by anybody in the executive that you may be a threat, they can hold you indefinitely, they could put you in Guantanamo, not bring any charges, not allow you to have a lawyer, not allow you to ever question what they've done, even in cases, as they now acknowledge, where they have large numbers of people in Guantanamo who are there by mistake, that they put you -- say you're a college professor who has written on Islam or for whatever reason, and they lock you up. You're not even allowed to question it. You're not allowed to have a lawyer, not allowed to say, "Wait a minute, you've got the wrong person. Or you've got -- the one you're looking for, their name is spelled similar to mine, but it's not me." It makes no difference. You have no recourse whatsoever.
    Lets hope things don't change too slowly. Remember, the soviet empire came down in a matter of days without any warning. The US collapse will hapen as fast or faster.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#14)
    by Gabriel Malor on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 10:20:25 AM EST
    theologicus, I agree with you that parts of the bill apply to citizens. I never said otherwise. It is clear, based on the text, that a citizen can be labeled "enemy combatant." It is also clear, based on the text, that only alien enemy combatants are denied habeas corpus. I'll post the pertinent text again, just because it seems like you failed to read it the last time I posted it.
    S.3930 (the Bill): Sec. 6 (a) `(e)(1) No court, justice, or judge shall have jurisdiction to hear or consider an application for a writ of habeas corpus filed by or on behalf of an alien detained by the United States who-- `(A) is currently in United States custody; and `(B) has been determined by the United States to have been properly detained as an enemy combatant or is awaiting such determination.
    Amnesty (and others) keep claiming that the bill strips habeas corpus from citizens. That is plainly not the case. Ergo, Amnesty (and others) are arguing in bad faith.

    scribe: This battle's moving to the Courts. I hope you're right, scribe. There should be thousands of lawyers and civil rights organizations across the country working on constitutional challenges to this. And, consequently, on this:
    Under the Nuremberg standard, Bush is definitely a war criminal. The US Supreme Court also exposed Bush to war crime charges under both the US War Crimes Act of 1996 and the Geneva Conventions when the Court ruled in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld against the Bush administration's military tribunals and inhumane treatment of detainees. President Bush and his Attorney General agree that under existing laws and treaties Bush is a war criminal together with many members of his government. To make his war crimes legal after the fact, Bush has instructed the Justice (sic) Department to draft changes to the War Crimes Act and to US treaty obligations under the Geneva Conventions. ... Under the US Constitution and US legal tradition, retroactive law is impermissible.
    ---edger

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#19)
    by theologicus on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 10:42:26 AM EST
    The bill effectively strips habeas corpus from anyone who is labeled an "enemy combatant."

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#20)
    by Peaches on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 10:50:08 AM EST
    I think they've miscalculated. I hope they will pay. I hope it will be with war crimes. Bobby's words probably never sounded so foretelling as now. Come gather 'round people Wherever you roam And admit that the waters Around you have grown And accept it that soon You'll be drenched to the bone. If your time to you Is worth savin' Then you better start swimmin' Or you'll sink like a stone For the times they are a-changin'. ... The line it is drawn The curse it is cast The slow one now Will later be fast As the present now Will later be past The order is Rapidly fadin'. And the first one now Will later be last For the times they are a-changin'.

    One [provision of the bill] would grant amnesty to Bush administration officials who authorized the use of torture techniques. This, on its face, to any reasonable person, is a tacit admission of guilt. What is it they feel they need amnesty from? And why would they need it unless... they need it? The rest of the world must be laughing their heads off today. They hate us for our freedoms, george? Well, you sure showed 'em, didn't you Mister president. After this they should all lay down their weapons and start converting by the billions...
    "More over, Mr. Bush, you are accomplishing in part what Osama Bin Laden and others seek -- a fearful American populace, easily manipulated, and willing to throw away any measure of restraint, any loyalty to our own ideals and freedoms, for the comforting illusion of safety." "Have you no sense of decency, sir?"
    --Keith Olbermann, Sept 5/2006
    I am starting to wonder if some of the democrats who voted for this bill did so out of some kind of misguided and twisted pretzel logic that it would save the country the trauma of trying a sitting president for war crimes.... ---edger

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#22)
    by theologicus on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 10:58:04 AM EST
    Here's what Prof. Balkin writes about habeas corpus:
    The MCA greatly expands the definition of enemy combatants, because it greatly expands the definition of "unlawful enemy combatants." If the government may detain any enemy combatants, a fortiori it may detain unlawful ones. The new definition is fuzzy: it includes citizens who "materially support" hostilities against the U.S. or whom the DoD says are unlawful enemy combatants.... [italics added] ... One last point: Section 7(a) of the MCA strips habeas and federal court jurisdiction with respect to aliens. It does not strip jurisdiction with respect to citizens. [ so far Gabriel Maior ] However, what if the DoD determines that a U.S. citizen is an alien in a Combatant Status Review Tribunal, [and] claims that its determination is conclusive under section 948a(1)(ii) and ships the person off to Guantanamo? As I noted before, section 948a(1)(ii) is probably unconstitutional to the extent that it suggests that DoD determinations are conclusive. The citizen should still have the right to prove that he is a citizen in a habeas proceeding, and a court must determine that question in order to determine whether it has jurisdiction. [italics added] To the extent that the MCA would prevent such a determination, it is unconstitutional.
    Amnesty has good grounds for concluding that the habeas-stripping implications are not restricted to aliens.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#24)
    by theologicus on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 11:18:12 AM EST
    Bruce Ackerman, professor of law and political science at Yale, agrees:
    BURIED IN THE complex Senate compromise on detainee treatment is a real shocker, reaching far beyond the legal struggles about foreign terrorist suspects in the Guantanamo Bay fortress. The compromise legislation, which is racing toward the White House, authorizes the president to seize American citizens as enemy combatants, even if they have never left the United States. And once thrown into military prison, they cannot expect a trial by their peers or any other of the normal protections of the Bill of Rights. This dangerous compromise not only authorizes the president to seize and hold terrorists who have fought against our troops "during an armed conflict," it also allows him to seize anybody who has "purposefully and materially supported hostilities against the United States." This grants the president enormous power over citizens and legal residents. They can be designated as enemy combatants if they have contributed money to a Middle Eastern charity, and they can be held indefinitely in a military prison.
    From his article yestrday in the LATimes, before the bill passed the Senate.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#25)
    by theologicus on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 11:24:54 AM EST
    This just in from the TPM Muckraker: Court Challenge to New Detainee Law May Come In "Days" By Justin Rood - September 29, 2006, 1:02 PM
    With President Bush poised to sign the White House-backed detainee treatment bill into law, groups are promising to challenge it in court "in days." "I don't think there's a snowball's chance in 'H' that this will be found constitutional," Michael Ratner, president of the Center for Constitutional Rights, told Congressional Quarterly (sub. req.). CCR represents a number of Guantanamo prisoners. Strangely, some senators who voted for the bill weren't convinced of its constitutionality. Sen. Arlen Specter (R-PA), who voted for the bill even after his amendment to preserve certain rights for detainees was defeated, called the proposal "patently unconstitutional on its face," The Washington Post reported. When CQ asked Sen. John McCain (R-AZ), who negotiated with the White House to win minor concessions on the legislation, if the bill was constitutional, he responded "I think so."
    Who's acting in "good faith" here?

    Edger et al., re this quote:
    Under the Nuremberg standard, Bush is definitely a war criminal. The US Supreme Court also exposed Bush to war crime charges under both the US War Crimes Act of 1996 and the Geneva Conventions when the Court ruled in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld against the Bush administration's military tribunals and inhumane treatment of detainees.
    Without referencing Nuremberg, I pretty much said the same thing when I made my first comments (here or elsewhere) on Hamdan, the day it came down. But then again, it was pretty f'g obvious war crimes were going on from the minute the whole "Military Commissions" idea came up, back in 2002, at least to anyone who cared to look. As the Book says: "Having eyes, ye see not?" The point is, in all discussions about this act, and particularly Repugs running for re-election who voted for it (i.e., all of them), it is vital to stress that they voted for torture. Use the word "torture". It makes them crazy -see this on kos describing where one Democratic candidate is taking it to the Repug incumbent, and the Repug has absolutely lost his mind. Even better, it's true.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#28)
    by theologicus on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 11:52:15 AM EST
    Better: Use the phrase "torture and related abuses."

    You must keep silent if your message is nothing but lies But if you have the chance to moan in freedom then thunder out the message and power it with your life. As an Iranian who's spend almost all his adult life in exile, I grow up thinking American constitution and declaration of independence was a major achievement for humanity and democracy. We use to view our own government actions and evaluate the democratic process of our country by said documents. Day before last I woke up and thought what just did happen. How we came to this? You do not need me to tell you, what did you lose, but I need you to know what we lost. We lost a strong hold against dictatorships, in our countries. We lost a dear belief that democracy is not only the rule of majority but also grantees the right of minorities to be heard, to oppose and if necessary even to rebel. History will judge you and us, it will judge you for allowing this to happen and will judge us for believing that we could relay on you to stop that. Sadly, now we have one thing in common. Law does not govern our counties. And the absolute truth of the world, now is nothing but these two blood-dripping cynical eyes. My best wishes for us all, Shahram Vahdany

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#36)
    by Che's Lounge on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 01:30:25 PM EST
    Mahar Arar was NOT an alien enemy combatant and he was denied his legal right of Habeas. So this whole bill is just BS on paper. It's only value is to the captors so they may, among other subversive acts, retroactively absolve themselves of any crimes (as usual). Orwell called it rewriting the past out of existence. Never happened.

    Let me lay it out for you. That barely noticeable sound is only a godda*n piece of paper being shredded, right? You'll never miss it. And that smell? It's just the rotting corpse of your freedom and rights. Soon the smell will fade, and you'll never know anything died here. Nothing to get yourself all in a tizzy about, right? Just a godda*n piece of paper... Hell, give 'em a thousand years they can make another one... ---edger

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#26)
    by kdog on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 02:23:03 PM EST
    Nice theo...so much for that oath to uphold the document.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#35)
    by Peaches on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 02:23:03 PM EST
    Edger, I think Americans will rise up, but it won't be over detainees, immigration, the patriot act or the apparent abuses/crimes committed by this administration. Americans will rise up because of this and this It is only a matter of when China decides to pull the plug. When they stop buying treasury bills, we collapse. It will happen quickly. There won't be money to pay the veterans or the soldiers. Might not even be enough money to bring them home. All those jobs in every congressional district that rely on contracts with the military industrial complex-Gone. Social security payments will suddenly stop coming. Thats when Americans rise up and this administration will be blamed and the criminals responsible will be prosecuted. Bobby!!! Come senators, congressmen Please heed the call Don't stand in the doorway Don't block up the hall For he that gets hurt Will be he who has stalled There's a battle outside And it is ragin'. It'll soon shake your windows And rattle your walls For the times they are a-changin'

    Edger, I think Americans will rise up, but it won't be over detainees, immigration, the patriot act or the apparent abuses/crimes committed by this administration. Americans will rise up because of this and this It is only a matter of when China decides to pull the plug. When they stop buying treasury bills, we collapse. It will happen quickly. There won't be money to pay the veterans or the soldiers. Might not even be enough money to bring them home. All those jobs in every congressional district that rely on contracts with the military industrial complex-Gone. Social security payments will suddenly stop coming. Thats when Americans rise up and this administration will be blamed and the criminals responsible will be prosecuted. Bobby!!! Come senators, congressmen Please heed the call Don't stand in the doorway Don't block up the hall For he that gets hurt Will be he who has stalled There's a battle outside And it is ragin'. It'll soon shake your windows And rattle your walls For the times they are a-changin'

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#40)
    by john horse on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 03:37:46 PM EST
    The GOP can not destroy our Constitution without some help. Check out this piece of disinformation put out by NBC "The agreement was hailed by human rights groups . . ." Name me one human rights group that supports this Bill? How shameful that instead of being a watchdog, our mainstream media is more like a labdog.

    Gabriel Malor might be a famous troll, but I believe he is correct. I've read the legislation (S.3930) a number of times, and it appears that military commissions can be applied only to alien unlawful enemy combatants. It outlines several ways that anyone can become an unlawful enemy combatant, but no ways that one can lose their citizenship in doing so.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#31)
    by scribe on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 04:19:41 PM EST
    Keep it simple - if a prosecutor prosecuting, say, a beating case, or a witness tampering case or something similar would call it "torture" (a nice broad term), so can people going after Repugs who voted for torture. Sauce for the goose. I mean, if the Repugs can get away with saying Candidate Tammy Duckworth, who lost both her legs when the copter she was piloting was shot out from under her, would cut and run from Iraq, why be nice to them?

    what has someone done for "political prisoners"? do you mean terrorists? amazing how ending the special treatment sought here for terrorists causes such a tizzy while continuing depredations of those who practice the religion in its extreme forms incite yawns. Mozart opera cancelled due to fears created by islamic extremists? any mention of that here? it's easier for eurotrash and those who aspire to be eurotrash like most of the posters here to attack bush as opposed to islamists. those guys will actually kill you.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#34)
    by Edger on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 04:19:41 PM EST
    Theologicus, I wonder. Arlen Specter may have tried to set up bush for constitutional challenges. He may have thrown bush under the bus on purpose, possibly sacrificing himself and his political career as an insignificant cost... I wonder...

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#39)
    by Peaches on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 04:19:41 PM EST
    Edger, I think Americans will rise up, but it won't be over detainees, immigration, the patriot act or the apparent abuses/crimes committed by this administration. Americans will rise up because of this and this It is only a matter of when China decides to pull the plug. When they stop buying treasury bills, we collapse. It will happen quickly. There won't be money to pay the veterans or the soldiers. Might not even be enough money to bring them home. All those jobs in every congressional district that rely on contracts with the military industrial complex-Gone. Social security payments will suddenly stop coming. Thats when Americans rise up and this administration will be blamed and the criminals responsible will be prosecuted. Bobby!!! Come senators, congressmen Please heed the call Don't stand in the doorway Don't block up the hall For he that gets hurt Will be he who has stalled There's a battle outside And it is ragin'. It'll soon shake your windows And rattle your walls For the times they are a-changin'

    Woke up this morning and we're still revolving around the sun so the world hasn't ended. Courts will review it, strike down what's wrong and we'll move forward. Listen, it can't be any worse than what Franklin Roosevelt did to the 120,000 Japanese-AMERICANS (citizens)and not only did we survive that travesty but Japan is today one of our greatest allies. Even after OCCUPATION and NUKES. As the great sage once said "this too shall pass". Geez...your concern is warranted but scare tactics are absurd...

    The bill should have been called The George W.Bush and republican sodomy enabling bill.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#42)
    by krazycory on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 08:48:12 PM EST
    i dont even know why i'm trying to post anything on this site again. they've blocked the last 3. (is bush running talkleft now?)but here goes with the patriot act and all of this stuff going on now. some people say they are only terrorists and they get what they deserve but i think we are all terorists in the eyes of bush and his cohorts we will all pay for this eventually

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#43)
    by Edger on Fri Sep 29, 2006 at 10:09:23 PM EST
    From BuzzFlash via Axis of Logic: On Friday, September 29, It's Mourning in America
    This is a suicidal act in terms of our national security. It is giving un-Constitutional and barbaric powers to a man who has miserably and persistently failed us and lied to this nation at every turn - as born out by the facts. It is a thuggish game of forcing an alternative reality upon America, a noxious, deadly one. Today, tears would flow down the olive robe of the Statue of Liberty if she were human. But she is just an inanimate symbol. We are the ones who have to cope with the pain of a democracy destroyed in a political play for power and permanent one-party rule, which is not a Constitutional form of government. That is called a dictatorship. And the one thing in common with dictators through history, whether Communist or fascist, is their state-sanctioned ability to torture people at will. Beyond the overwhelming facts this week that Bush has endangered the national security of the United States of America with his failed and costly fanatic ignorance, we are left with this sad fact. With the law passed on September 28th by Congress, we have become the Republic of torture. We not only have lost our claim to be a civilizing force among nations and abandoned our Constitution, we have appeased the terrorists by doing so.
    And from an Iranian in exile from a country bush wants to attack:
    As an Iranian who's spend almost all his adult life in exile, I grow up thinking American constitution and declaration of independence was a major achievement for humanity and democracy. We use to view our own government actions and evaluate the democratic process of our country by said documents. ... History will judge you and us, it will judge you for allowing this to happen and will judge us for believing that we could [rely] on you to stop that.


    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#44)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Sep 30, 2006 at 06:23:26 AM EST
    Peaches - Sometimes you sound like SD in disguise. China won't stop buying T Bills, just as Japan didn't stop. They remain the safest place to keep your money outside of under Aunt Tillie's bed. In addition, they have a vested interest in not destroying our economy because if it went, the world wide economy would collapse. That would serve no one. Now, if you want to make some bucks, you might want to plan to get into the futures markets and plan for a minor hit when we invade Iran, just as the economy cooled in the thrid quarter because of gasoline prices. Narius - There is almost zero censorship by TL. If you've been reading you know that she has had some major problems with her hosting company. As for my lack of comments, I have made a few, and have asked if any of the experts here have actually read the two versions. I haven't and neither have they. But I like what I hear. They don't. Their comments will only further marginalize them. Besides, a coach long ago sat me down and shook his finger in my face and said, "When you win, act like you've done it before."

    You all have noticed that the MCA modifies and adds to Title 10 of the US Code -- the part that governs the military. See the Act US Code (not updated as yet, takes awhile)

    Wake me up when Washington's burning.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#47)
    by soccerdad on Mon Oct 02, 2006 at 09:29:45 AM EST
    plan for a minor hit when we invade Iran
    dumbest thing I've read this year. If we invade Iran the hit wont be minor.

    They remain the safest place to keep your money outside of under Aunt Tillie's bed.
    Jim, You should know better. What is the disclaimer. Past performance is no guarantee for future returns. I don't play those risks anymore. My investments are in land and just a small portion at that. I am building soil and attempting to build community through relationships. That is the only worthwhile investment in today's world. Pray the global economy holds out. You only have a few years left. You'll probably remain financially secure. However, when China finds a better place to invest its money than the US economy, the worlds largest debtor and with huge deficits added each year, they will make the wise finacial choice. They haven't yet to avoid the unknown and almost certain world recession that will follow. However, eventually it will be in their interest, both financially and politically, to make this investment choice. BTW. this is the global economy today.

    Re: Military Commission Bill: The Nuts and Bolts (none / 0) (#50)
    by Peaches on Mon Oct 02, 2006 at 10:28:19 AM EST
    They remain the safest place to keep your money outside of under Aunt Tillie's bed.
    Jim, You should know better. What is the disclaimer. Past performance is no guarantee for future returns. I don't play those risks anymore. My investments are in land and just a small portion at that. I am building soil and attempting to build community through relationships. That is the only worthwhile investment in today's world. Pray the global economy holds out. You only have a few years left. You'll probably remain financially secure. However, when China finds a better place to invest its money than the US economy, the worlds largest debtor and with huge deficits added each year, they will make the wise finacial choice. They haven't yet to avoid the unknown and almost certain world recession that will follow. However, eventually it will be in their interest, both financially and politically, to make this investment choice. BTW. this is the global economy today.

    They remain the safest place to keep your money outside of under Aunt Tillie's bed.
    Jim, You should know better. What is the disclaimer. Past performance is no guarantee for future returns. I don't play those risks anymore. My investments are in land and just a small portion at that. I am building soil and attempting to build community through relationships. That is the only worthwhile investment in today's world. Pray the global economy holds out. You only have a few years left. You'll probably remain financially secure. However, when China finds a better place to invest its money than the US economy, the worlds largest debtor and with huge deficits added each year, they will make the wise finacial choice. They haven't yet to avoid the unknown and almost certain world recession that will follow. However, eventually it will be in their interest, both financially and politically, to make this investment choice.