Friday, September 29, 2006

Congress gives Bush the right to torture and detain people forever

"Say goodbye to your freedoms, America... they're slipping down the drain. If you are suspected of being a terrorist, you can be detained and tortured by the U.S. for the rest of your life."

I have also read a good portion of this H.R. 6166 bill (and done text searches). In all places except for one, it is clear this bill pertains only to "Alien Unlawful Combatants". The section which doesn't have "alien" next to it is "948d. Jurisdiction of military commissions". It says:

18 BATANT STATUS DISPOSITIVE.—A finding, whether be-
19 fore, on, or after the date of the enactment of the Military
20 Commissions Act of 2006, by a Combatant Status Review
21 Tribunal or another competent tribunal established under
22 the authority of the President or the Secretary of Defense
23 that a person is an unlawful enemy combatant is disposi-
24 tive for purposes of jurisdiction for trial by military com-
25 mission under this chapter."

So although I disagree with the bill, and quite frankly we have worse documents to worry about (like the Patriot Act II), I cannot see anything in this working document saying they can grab American Citizens and treat them like unlawful combatants. The Patriot Act Section 802 can determine an American Citizen as a "terrorist", but this bill would not apply to them. Once you are an American Citizen they cannot strip you of that. They can take Habeas Corpus away (suspend your ability to combat the charges) but they cannot strip away your citizenship.

Then there is the matter of torturing children. As far as I can tell, this only came up in a press conference with John Yoo in which he said the President could authorize anything he deemed necessary. When asked about torturing children, he responded "No treaty...I think it depends on why the President thinks he needs to do that".

I also do not condone the actions, or statement of this crazy person Yoo, but there is nothing written into law saying you can torture children. I think this new act also draws out what torture is, and who is subject to it. No children are mentioned.

Can someone please reply to this with any other information I might be missing? Is there anything in this bill, or something that refers to/from it which involves American Citizens, or children even by inference? Besides the Patriot Act I, and the Detainee Treatment Act 2005 I cannot find much. rhawk301-at-gmail-dot-com

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