RealNews

Analysis: Terror trials need Hill input

Critics of the Bush administration’s handling of the trials of those charged with terror-related crimes say the use of presidential wartime powers as justification for placing suspects in military tribunals and detaining suspects caught in the United States without access to lawyers and judges is misplaced. Morton Halperin, director of the Washington office of the liberal Open Society Institute and an expert of civil liberties and national security, says that the Bush administration’s policies toward holding terror suspects and placing them in military courts violate the Constitution because Congress has not given President Bush the power to take such actions. Even if it did, he said, the way in which some cases have been handled violates judicial standards. “I think this can be done constitutionally and … (there are) processes that need to be followed under the Constitution and rule of law,” Halperin said at a forum on prosecuting terror suspects at the conservative American Enterprise Institute last week. In fighting al-Qaida, the United States faces a threat unlike any before, in both a militaristic as well as a judicial sense. But nearly two years after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, questions linger about the ability of the U.S. court system to handle the prosecution of terrorist suspects while preserving civil liberties. Full Story

OODA Analyst

OODA Analyst

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