Quote of the day: “The Nation will live to regret what the Court has done today.”

Posted by: ST on June 12, 2008 at 12:55 pm

That was Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, in his dissent on the USSC ruling today that Gitmo detainees have habeas corpus rights.

Lyle Denniston analyzes the ruling here.

Captain Ed sums up USSC’s decision:

This will probably derail the hearings that had just begun at Gitmo for six members of the 9/11 conspiracy. By granting the unlawful combatants habeas corpus, the court has now eliminated the main reason for the military tribunal system — and for that matter, Gitmo itself. If the detainees can access American courts, they may as well be held on American soil.

The previous two rulings that struck down the tribunals forced the government to quickly pass laws that allowed for them. The Supreme Court has basically ruled that the Constitution applies worldwide rather than just to the US and its residents, which makes it pretty difficult to go back to the well a third time. Also, with very little time remaining in the Bush administration, they will not have enough time to push through a third attempt to address the Court’s concerns — and this ruling appears to be much broader than the two that preceded this one.

It seems absurd to apply criminal law to unlawful combatants captured during hostilities abroad. Will they require a Miranda reading, too? Do we have to bring the soldiers and Marines who captured them to the trial? In our 232-year history, when have we ever allowed that kind of access to enemy combatants not captured inside the US itself?

It’s mind-boggling.

The NYT excitedly reports on the news here.

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  • 20 Responses to “Quote of the day: “The Nation will live to regret what the Court has done today.””


    1. Steve Skubinna says:

      This is further evidence, if any were needed, that nearly seven years after 9/11 many still believe international terrorism is a law enforcement and not a military matter.

      I suspect that’s an artifact of post modern thinking. In this enlightened age, nothing is a military matter, and militaries themselves are dangerous atavisms. Witness Clinton’s determination to use the 82nd Airborne as a sort of international social service organization, or the left’s simple faith that a blue helmet can transform a brutal corrupt rapist into a “peacekeeper.”

    2. Severian says:

      It’s official now, this country has completely lost it’s mind and will. Or rather, enough idiots, in enough positions of power have that the rest of us are completely screwed.

      Just you wait, the liberal press will treat this 5-4 decision as “a majority of the court agrees” whereas for a 7-2 decision they don’t approve of it’s “in a divided opinion the court…”

      Habeas Corpus has never, ever been applied in this manner in the history of the country. Our Founding Fathers would disown the lot of us as unworthy of the country they left us.

    3. KL says:

      Something wicked this way comes

    4. Baklava says:

      Why ever detain unlawful combatants ever again..

      Just shoot ’em! They were on the battlefield – without American citizenship….:-\

    5. Baklava says:

      Scalia’s words

      I like this part:

      The President relied on our settled precedent in Johnson v. Eisentrager, 339 U. S. 763 (1950), when he established the prison at Guantanamo Bay for enemy aliens. Citing that case, the President’s Office of Legal Counsel advised him “that the great weight of legal authority indicates that a federal district court could not properly exercise habeas jurisdiction over an alien detained at [Guantanamo Bay].” Memorandum from Patrick F. Philbin and John C. Yoo, Deputy Assistant Attorneys General, Office of Legal Counsel, to William J. Haynes II, General Counsel, Dept. of Defense (Dec. 28, 2001). Had the law been otherwise, the military surely would not have transported prisoners there, but would have kept them in Afghanistan, transferred them to another of our foreign military bases, or turned them over to allies for detention. Those other facilities might well have been worse for the detainees themselves.

    6. Great White Rat says:

      Baklava’s right….there’s a very simple way around this. Just don’t take any terrorists into custody. Just shoot the SOBs when you catch them. No prisoner, no problem.

      The Scalia quote is good, too…if the moonbats are so concerned with the rights of al-Qaeda prisoners, just ship them off to some willing ally where detainee rights aren’t as extensive. They’ll be begging Allah to be sent back to Gitmo. Again, no prisoner, no problem.

    7. Foxx says:

      No enemy combatant left behind… alive.

    8. NC Cop says:

      Baklava’s right….there’s a very simple way around this. Just don’t take any terrorists into custody.

      There is no better recipe for battlefield justice. Our military are fighting and dying at the hands of these very people, and our country bends over backwards to give them the very rights that they would deny others.


    9. Lorica says:

      Just shoot ‘em! They were on the battlefield – without American citizenship….”

      Ahhhhh the law of unintended consequences. This is exactly what is going to happen to these terrorists.

      Those other facilities might well have been worse for the detainees themselves.

      Yep. If a terrorist is important enought to keep around, they will never leave the country they were captured in.

      Also, we need to just agree with the Supremes, and send everyone of these terrorists back to the country they were caught in. Let them deal with ’em. – Lorica

    10. Steve Skubinna says:

      Okay, on the one hand I agree with the “shoot on the battlefield” argument.

      On the other, any policy that may risk our troops even more, by encouraging jihadis to fight to the death, might need some fine tuning.

    11. forest hunter says:

      “Americans are going to be shocked to find that that mastermind of 9-11, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, now has the same legal standing as an American citizen.”

      Skubinna makes a good point.

    12. As I wrote here, this offers John McCain a perfect opportunity – make this election about the Supreme Court, and put Obama in the position of defending constitutional rights for Osama Bin Laden.

    13. Great White Rat says:

      And now this turns out to be one more clear example of how the two presidential candidates will handle the WOT. Obama thinks it’s a wonderful decision. McCain yesterday called it one of the worst in history.


    14. NC Cop says:

      Absolutely unbelievable, GWR.

      You know, I’ve been concerned about elections before. When Kerry ran in 2004, I was worried about what might happen to the country.

      When Gore ran in 2000, I disagreed with Gore a lot, but I was never scared about the election.

      For the first time in my life, I am terrified about what might happen should a candidate get into the White House. Obama seems to have no clue as to what that ruling is going to do to the War on Terror. Then again, he doesn’t seem to have a clue when it comes to the War on Terror in general, so I’m not surprised.

      God help us.

    15. sanity says:

      They were (the ones in Iraq) captured on the battlefield, only right we return them to the hands of the IRAQI security forces we now have in place.

      We do not condone torture, but we can only witness and not intefere in the way Iraqis deal with foriegn intrusion into thier lands……

      I am sure the prisoners would LOVE to be in the hands of the Iraqi security forces and not the Americans..

    16. forest hunter says:

      A good friend of mine said,”Were I POTUS, I would defy the SCOTUS and declare they have no jurisdiction in this case. They are to interpret the law, not write it.”

      ………And THAT is why is important to own a pair and FARICKEN LEAD! I’m so ticked off at the wimps we have representing the worlds future…..gah!!!

    17. Severian says:

      Unfortunately Forest, from the things he’s been saying lately, it’s apparent that Bush is more concerned with his “legacy” than in giving the SCOTUS the slap down they so dearly need.

      I am wondering what will happen when it becomes obvious that in order to really force whatever changes you desire, be they leftist or rightist, the most effective way is to assassinate the judges who disagree with you when you have a President and Congress that will appoint replacements that do agree with your goals. I’m surprised this hasn’t happened to be honest.

      If I were one of the 4, an Obama presidency with a Dem Congress, would worry me.