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?
The NYT excitedly reports on the news here.