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Indefinite Detention Barred By Federal Judge

May 18, 2012 by  

Indefinite Detention Barred By Federal Judge
UPI FILE
A Federal judge granted a preliminary injunction to block provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act that allowed for the indefinite military detention of American citizens at places such as Guantanamo Bay, pictured here.

Earlier this week, a Federal judge granted a preliminary injunction to block provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act that allowed for the indefinite military detention of American citizens.

In statute 1021 of the NDAA, language is included that lets the military detain anyone it suspects “substantially supported” al-Qaida, the Taliban or “associated forces” without charge or trial until the “end of hostilities.”

U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest issued a 68-page ruling explaining that the indefinite detention statute fails to “pass Constitutional muster.” The judge opined that the broad language of the bill could be used to quell political dissent.

“There is a strong public interest in protecting rights guaranteed by the First Amendment,” Forrest writes. “There is also a strong public interest in ensuring that due process rights guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment are protected by ensuring that ordinary citizens are able to understand the scope of conduct that could subject them to indefinite military detention.”

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Chris Hedges filed suit in the weeks following President Barack Obama’s New Year’s Eve signing of the NDAA into law. According to Courthouse News Service, more activists, scholars and politicians subsequently joined the suit, including Pentagon Papers whistle-blower Daniel Ellsberg; Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor Noam Chomsky; Icelandic parliamentarian Birgitta Jonsdottir; Kai Wargalla, an organizer from Occupy London; and Alexa O’Brien, an organizer for the New York-based activist group U.S. Day of Rage.

In March, three of the plaintiffs testified that the possibility of government repression under the NDAA made them reconsider how they approached their journalism and activism.

Forrest writes: “This court is acutely aware that preliminarily enjoining an act of Congress must be done with great caution. However, it is the responsibility of our judicial system to protect the public from acts of Congress which infringe upon constitutional rights. As set forth above, this court has found that plaintiffs have shown a likelihood of success on the merits regarding their constitutional claim and it therefore has a responsibility to insure that the public’s constitutional rights are protected.”

The U.S. Attorney’s office reportedly declined to comment on the injunction.

The NDAA and amendments to the bill that would do away with the indefinite detention provision have been considered in the House this week; the schedule calls for last votes no later than 3 p.m. today.

Sam Rolley

Staff writer Sam Rolley began a career in journalism working for a small town newspaper while seeking a B.A. in English. After learning about many of the biases present in most modern newsrooms, Rolley became determined to find a position in journalism that would allow him to combat the unsavory image that the news industry has gained. He is dedicated to seeking the truth and exposing the lies disseminated by the mainstream media at the behest of their corporate masters, special interest groups and information gatekeepers.

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  • Harold Olsen

    This ruling won’t mean a thing to Obama. A couple of years ago he overruled the US Supreme Court with an executive order and got away with it. He’s not about to let a lower court tell him what he can or can not do. As far as he is concerned he was elected dictator and neither Congress nor the courts are going to stop him from achieving his agenda. The traitors in both houses of Congress are more than willing to allow him to do what he wants and, apparently, the courts aren’t much better. It may just be that the citizens of this country will be the ones who will have to act. Perhaps, and I haven’t said this for a long time, it’s time for another American Revolution!

  • Sirian

    The vote coming up today may pass the House but what chance does it have to pass through Reid’s senate? They are more concerned about their debt ceiling than properly amending, if not totally eliminating, the NDAA.

    • eddie47d

      Not necessary true Sirian. Democrat McGovern of Mass is fighting against NDAA(Sec1031) and also full withdrawal from Afghanistan. Republican Sessions of Texas tore into McGovern and told him he was “drunk” to take on those issues. So which party is really in favor of NDAA. Howard McKeon of CA. insisted that NDAA would be overturned yet now says Sec. 1033 guarantees that no American will be incarcerated or even detained under NDAA.

      • Sirian

        The trust level on either side is very low eddie, very low. We had but one from here in Okie Land vote against NDAA. Coburn is the only one that voted against it. All the rest have been notified and forewarned. I hope the same has occurred with the rest of those that voted for it. Why is it you can’t seem to see beyond the “party line”? Isn’t “Power & Control” their main objective, regardless of party affiliation? Nevermind. . .

      • demsagainst obama

        “Why is it you can’t seem to see beyond the “party line”?”

        Because eddie is a die hard union controlled democrat mouthpiece.

      • Thor

        As long as you have been coming to this site, eddie47, you still don’t get it: it’s not Democrats versus Republicans, it’s us versus them. Those who don’t know they have the power versus those who think and act as though they do. And since the labels ‘Democrat and Republican’ have lost their cantor, we need a new word to describe them. I would suggest ‘progressive-communist-socialist totalitarians’ or ‘progro-socio-communists’ or something more abbreviated like ‘total-prosocoms.’ There is only one party and it will not survive unless our economy is transformed into a socialist economy—essentially because communism and capitalism don’t mix but perhaps more importantly because the rest of the world’s misery is calling for the US’s company. Most of the 220 countries have adopted some form of socio-communism under the guise of democracy but are forced by one nation and one only (the US) to trade in a global capitalist economy—thus, the notion of ‘state capitalism.’

        I know it’s a tough pill to swallow—especially for you, ed—but those who argue the party line anymore are naïve. There is no choice between Democracy and Republicanism, Big Business and ‘the little people’—there is only a choice between freedom and totalitarianism. And some merely do the totalitarianism thing with more panache than others. Obama, for example, quipped that with the ability to detain terrorists indefinitely we could save money by avoiding trials and ‘getting bad guys out of circulation,’ smiling as he signed it and emphasizing, “I’ll never use this for evil.” And of course he’s right—why worry about trial when you can simply slap a terrorist label on someone, detain him until his teeth fall out and he’s no longer a threat and no one will question it…because, after all, he’s s terrorist. It’s doubtful the resistance will even get organized until half the country is in re-education camps……

      • JeffH

        demsagainst obama…and he never could see the forest for the trees.

      • eddie47d

        Why is it that you don’t lecture Republicans who always bring up Democrats which was done above me. That is your proof of the pudding that you all are still on the Republican/Democrat bandwagon …Thor and company. Correct yourself before getting long winded about me.

      • JeffH

        eddie, you are just one ignorant individual. You are the only one to bring(identify)Dem/Rep into the conversation..another of your many MO’s. Admit it, you’re completely stuck with the whole right/left, Rep/Dem pardigm while the largest majority of posters here recognize there “ain’t a whole lot of difference”
        between them.

        Do you want some cheee to go with your whine?

        Stupid is as stupid does
        Forrest Gump

  • roger gunderson

    I do not understand why congress passed the ndaa bill. What is their reasoning? We have a constitution as our guide and they chose not to abide by it. Why? As long as we still have elections, dictatorship is out. I will check back later to read others ideas.

    • http://boblivingstonpl.wordpress.com Bob Livingston

      Dear roger gunderson,

      You write: “I do not understand why congress passed the ndaa bill. What is their reasoning?” Because they understand that people are growing wise to their criminality and they’re preparing every means at their disposal to deal with the coming revolt and/or collapse of the system they have set in motion.

      You write: “We have a constitution as our guide and they chose not to abide by it. Why?” Because it stands in the way of their quest for more power and wealth.

      Best wishes,
      Bob

      • Steve E

        My sentiments exactly.

      • dufas magnet

        You couldn’t have said it any plainer Bob.. This is exactly why they did it.. This is exactly why their creating camps.. They know what is coming if Obama gets re-elected so their out maneuvering us before the fact. And just for extra safety, they know if Romney becomes POTUS, if (and assuredly) after his 100 days nothing changes (but gets worse) the same dissension will crop up. These mongers are covering all bases in order to protect their own butts.

    • http://teamlaw.org Jazzabelle

      Roger Gunderson, they did it because they are afraid of the American people.

      Why are they afraid? Because THEY KNOW WHAT THEY ARE UP TO!!

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001515532721 NickerDoodle Dandy

      Could it be they did not “read” before signing as occurred with the Patriot Act?

  • http://http//yahoo.com sophillyjimmy

    Finally, Obama lost one of many violations of our Constitutional Rights. Now hopefully someone will take him to court for his failed attempts at attacking our 2nd amendment rights particularly with the Fast And Furious criminal acts of Attorney General Eric Holder’s witholding vital documents and constantly changing dates conveniontly as to when he knew of the sceme to sell semi automatic weapons to Mexican Drug Cartels which caused the death of Border Patrol Officer Brian Terry and the untold number of innocent Mexican citizens. If a judge will listen to the truths pertaining to Fast And Furious Holder should be in a federal prison for contempt of court then hopefully manslaughter for the Death of Officer Terry, and lest we forget Obama’s vowing to uphold the Constitution when he was inaugurated and stomped on the Constitution every chance he got.

  • Big Red

    Harold Olsen you have nailed it.

  • JeffH

    Important to note that DownsizeDC.org filed the ONLY amicus brief in the case. The Judge asked for briefs to argue this question. DownsizeDC.org was invited to submit one of those briefs.

    The Judge agreed with two of their main arguments which said the new law is . . .
    •Illegally vague. The Judge said there has to be a precise definition of who is subject to the law, and this law fails.

    •Unfair, because it subjects people to detention even when they had no intent to cause harm or knowledge that they were risking such detention.

    DownsizeDC.org, Inc. is dedicated to withdrawing consent from State criminality. The Downsize DC Foundation exposes Statism and promotes human progress through voluntary association.
    It is important to use them and support them.
    http://www.downsizedcfoundation.org/blog/the-powerful-brief-we-filed-in-the-hedges-case

  • revnowwhilewecan

    At least, on it’s face, it’ll protect the every day American. Obama will still hold whom he wants in army bases but there’s a national consciousness awakening going on that ties in with the world consciousness and the N.W.O. is reeling. Things aren’t happening for the elitist’s as fast as they want it to. They’re soooo arrogant they probably sat around and said, “You know what guys, we can do whatever we want. I bet we can put a black guy from Kenya in the W.H. by the turn of the century”. They were so busy laughing that they underestimated the power of good willed people in key spots and when things started to turn, they tried to label some as kooks, whistleblowers, conspiracy theorists and even unpatriotic if you speak out about OUR country and it’s degenerative effect in global corporate policies. The world has had enough suffering. We’ve taken the lead in conflict now we WILL regain our Republic and we must take the lead and restore peace throughout the world.

    • Vicki

      Unless the people who enforce the act pay attention how will this ruling protect Americans (U.S. Citizens)? The law allows the government to disappear you. Since you are missing who is going to go to court and how will they be able to show that you were taken?

  • Elizabeth Sloot

    Thor-

    They do not have to go to any brain washing camps, they already are.

  • AnneOnymous

    Nobody seems to get it.. Your all involved in what Obama will do if this injunction succeeds.. No one seems to want to hail Judge Katherine Forrest for her action on the matter.. Imagine, someone in power actual working for the citizens. If she succeeds or fails has to do with the criminal element in politics, that the judge spoke out and challenged the crooks is next to heroism. Remember her come next election.

  • Viet Nam Vet 67-68

    Yes one Judge that is standing up for our rights and Constitution. We the People need to email everone we know and vote all of Congress out of Office, these people have passed bills taking our rights away and that spells Treason to me. I will pass this on to everyone I know to vote them all out, lets start a real Revolution and throw the Traitors Out. PASS THIS ON.

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