Thursday, June 29, 2006

Hamdan Gone Wrong

SCOTUS screwed it up--predictably, Anthony Kennedy was the deciding vote:

The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that President Bush overstepped his authority in creating military war crimes trials for Guantanamo Bay detainees, a rebuke to the administration and its aggressive anti-terror policies.

Justice John Paul Stevens wrote the opinion, which said the proposed trials were illegal under U.S. law and the Geneva Convention.

The case, one of the most significant involving presidential war powers cases since World War II, was brought by Guantanamo prisoner Salim Ahmed Hamdan, who was a driver for Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan.

The vote was split 5-3, with moderate Justice Anthony M. Kennedy joining the court's liberal members in ruling against the Bush administration. Chief Justice John Roberts, named to the court last September by Bush, was sidelined in the case because as an appeals court judge he had backed the government over Hamdan.

Thursday's ruling overturned that decision.

After the Sept. 11 attacks, Bush established special war crimes tribunals for trying prisoners held at the U.S. military base at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba.

Of about 450 prisoners at Guantanamo, only Hamdan and nine others face charges before a tribunal. Human rights groups have criticized the tribunals, formally called military commissions, for being fundamentally unfair.

Hamdan’s lawyers had challenged Bush’s power to create the tribunals and said he is covered by the Geneva Convention, and therefore rules governing U.S. courts-martial should be applied.

HT: Malkin


allendrury said...

I am starting to like the rulings form this Court...and has been known for a couple of years of reading decisions and hwo the alignment of the Court was headed, Kennedy would be a swing vote.

This ruling brings back balance and fairness to the process for those now requiring justice being held. I suggest the world community will welcome this news, and I see it as a major VICTORY!!

Dad29 said...

...given your love for the NYSlimes (inter alia) that's no surprise to me.

My question: VICTORY!!! for whom?

All this means is that the application of the Rules of Engagement may change. Our troops will shoot, not capture.

So--you may be right, Al. It is a victory. We won't waste time and resources; it'll only cost us about $0.47 for a bullet instead of God-knows-how-much for Gitmo, trails, jail, etc.

steveegg said...

Guess it's time to increase the usage of armed Predators to break up those Islamokazi meetings.

Billiam said...

Dad, you've got to admit, the Liberals on the court have remained faithful to the position on the left that this war on terror is a law enforvement problem. We have to arrest these poor, misunderstood psychotics and try them in civil court. Afterall, terrorist would'nt be mean if it weren't for the bad ole USA.