07 December 2011

Just When I Thought that I Could Not Get Any More Cynical………

I read this analysis, which makes the very convincing case that Barack Obama does not object to the detention provisions of the defense authorization bill because he supports the rule of law, but because it classifies these detainees as prisoners of war, and so subject to the strictures of the Geneva Conventions:
However, on further reflection I conclude that the Obama regime’s objection to military detention is not rooted in concern for the constitutional rights of American citizens.  The regime objects to military detention because the implication of military detention is that detainees are prisoners of war. As Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin put it:  Should somebody determined “to be a member of an enemy force who has come to this nation or is in this nation to attack us as a member of a foreign enemy, should that person be treated according to the laws of war? The answer is yes.”

Detainees treated according to the laws of war have the protections of the Geneva Conventions. They cannot be tortured. The Obama regime opposes military detention, because detainees would have some rights.  These rights would interfere with the regime’s ability to send detainees to CIA torture prisons overseas.  This is what the Obama regime means when it says that the requirement of military detention denies the regime “flexibility.”

The Bush/Obama regimes have evaded the Geneva Conventions by declaring that detainees are not POWs, but “enemy combatants,” “terrorists,” or some other designation that removes all accountability from the US government for their treatment.

By requiring military detention of the captured, Congress is undoing all the maneuvering that two regimes have accomplished in removing POW status from detainees.
A careful reading of the Obama regime’s objections to military detention supports this conclusion.(See http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/legislative/sap/112/saps1867s_20111117.pdf)

The November 17 letter to the Senate from the Executive Office of the President says that the Obama regime does not want the authority it has under the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), Public Law 107-40, to be codified. Codification is risky, the regime says. “After a decade of settled jurisprudence on detention authority, Congress must be careful not to open a whole new series of legal questions that will distract from our efforts to protect the country.”

In other words, the regime is saying that under AUMF the executive branch has total discretion as to who it detains and how it treats detainees. Moreover, as the executive branch has total discretion, no one can find out what the executive branch is doing, who detainees are, or what is being done to them. Codification brings accountability, and the executive branch does not want accountability.

Those who see hope in Obama’s threatened veto have jumped to conclusions if they think the veto is based on constitutional scruples.
(emphasis original)

Read the White House PDF.  They flat out  say that the reason that they object is because they want more "flexibility" (to torture, etc).

It's not for nothing that I call Obama the "The Worst Constitutional Law Professor Ever".

H/t Washington's Blog.


Anonymous said...

You know that this amounts to accusing the Graham et.al. of wanting to insure that detainees are given rights....

Personally, I have thought for sometime that making the detainees POWs is the correct thing.  Interestingly, it even gives an excuse to try them for war crimes e.g. not fighting in uniform.

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