Senate Passes Indefinite Detention Limitations Amid Various Interpretations of the Statute Language

By: Friday November 30, 2012 12:17 pm

Depending on who you believe, the Senate either voted today to limit indefinite detention practices or voted to allow those limits to be determined by the executive branch. You may need a degree in linguistics to figure this one out. First, here’s the basics of what happened: The Senate voted late on Thursday to prohibit [...]

DC Circuit Overturns Hamdan Conviction, Says Military Commissions Unusable for Material Support Charges

By: Tuesday October 16, 2012 2:02 pm

In a significant ruling today, a federal appeals court overturned a conviction of Salim Hamdan, Osama bin Laden’s driver, obtained through a military commission. Judge Brett Kavanaugh, a George W. Bush appointee seen as a possible conservative Supreme Court justice, wrote in a ruling for a three-judge panel of the DC Circuit Court that Hamdan [...]

Judge Stops Indefinite Detention of Undocumented Immigrants, Asylum Seekers

By: Friday September 14, 2012 10:17 am

Scott Lemieux has a good piece in The American Prospect about the federal court ruling blocking the indefinite detention provisions of last year’s National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). While Lemieux expressed a lack of confidence that the injunction would be upheld by the appeals courts, he praised the action because of the potential for abuse: [...]

US Hands Over Bagram Prison to Afghans – Sort Of

By: Monday September 10, 2012 1:04 pm

The US has handed over the prison at Bagram Air Force base to Afghanistan, in the latest in a series of transitions to have the Afghans take control of their own security. The prison transfer was part of a bargain won months ago by Afghan President Hamid Karzai. However, hundreds of prisoners at the facility [...]

Levin: Let’s Not Let the Constitution Get in the Way of Indefinite Detention

By: Thursday May 24, 2012 6:14 am

Not every politician is great on every issue, granted. But with Carl Levin of late, there’s been quite a swing. On the one hand, his Permanent Subcommittee for Investigations delivered Goldman Sachs on a silver platter to the Justice Department (it’s currently sitting in a conference room, untouched). He has jumped on JPMorgan Chase’s massive [...]

House Passes Bloated Defense Authorization Bill Despite Veto Threat

By: Friday May 18, 2012 12:55 pm

The House has passed this year’s defense authorization bill which departs from last year’s debt limit deal by adding $8 billion above spending targets set for the military, and by replacing the defense side of the automatic “trigger” cuts with cuts from elsewhere in the budget. The final vote was 299-120, with 77 Democrats supporting [...]

NDAA Amendment to Eliminate Indefinite Detention for US Citizens Fails in House

By: Friday May 18, 2012 7:39 am

A bid to guarantee that no US citizen would be subject to indefinite detention by the government has failed in the House of Representatives. The bipartisan amendment, from Reps. Adam Smith (D-WA) and Justin Amash (R-MI), failed on a 182-237 vote. While President Obama has announced his intention not to use the rules granted in [...]

Administration Announces Military Custody Rules Under NDAA

By: Wednesday February 29, 2012 8:15 am

The President signed the National Defense Authorization Act on the last day of 2011. Two months later, his White House announced an implementation strategy in a statement from Tommy Vietor. In essence, the President will ignore a few of the provisions in the NDAA, using the escape hatches written into the bill to evade the [...]

US Resolves to Deal with Non-Afghan Nationals at Bagram Prison

By: Wednesday January 25, 2012 8:55 am

The focus on Guantanamo over the past couple years has been misplaced. In fact, the number of detainees there has been dissipating somewhat. The number of detainees at Bagram Air Force Base in Afghanistan, by contrast, has exploded, with detainees captured throughout the world moved over to Bagram – and shielded from any habeas proceedings [...]

New Year’s Eve News Dump: Obama Signs Defense Authorization Bill

By: Saturday December 31, 2011 12:58 pm

The President signed the defense authorization bill today, appending a signing statement expressing concerns with the detainee measures in the bill. The White House had earlier stated they would not veto the bill, so this was no surprise. “I have signed this bill despite having serious reservations with certain provisions that regulate the detention, interrogation, [...]

President Will Not Veto Defense Authorization Bill, Despite Detention Provisions

By: Wednesday December 14, 2011 1:32 pm

After its FBI Director told Congress that the revisions to the defense authorization bill did not satisfy his concerns with the bill, the White House issued a statement of Administration policy saying that they would not veto the bill, despite an earlier threat. Here’s the statement from the Press Secretary. We have been clear that [...]

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