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Mon Sep 17, 2012, 07:38 PM

U.S. asks appeals court to freeze military detention ruling

Source: Reuters

The U.S. government on Monday asked for an emergency stay of a federal judge's ruling against a section of a law that activists and journalists had said could permit their indefinite military detention.

The U.S. Justice Department said the ruling against a portion of the National Defense Authorization Act's "Homeland Battlefield" provisions would hurt America's ability to fight wars overseas.

The ruling was issued last week by Judge Katherine Forrest in favor of a group of activists and reporters who said they feared being detained under the law signed by President Barack Obama in December.

The provision authorizes indefinite military detention for people deemed to have "substantially supported" al Qaeda, the Taliban or "associated forces."



Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/09/17/us-usa-security-lawsuit-idUSBRE88G16M20120917



And for the rest of the story.
In January I sued President Barack Obama over Section 1021(b)(2) of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which authorized the military to detain U.S. citizens indefinitely, strip them of due process and hold them in military facilities, including offshore penal colonies. Last week, round one in the battle to strike down the onerous provision, one that saw me joined by six other plaintiffs including Noam Chomsky and Daniel Ellsberg, ended in an unqualified victory for the public. U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest, who accepted every one of our challenges to the law, made her temporary injunction of the section permanent. In short, she declared the law unconstitutional.

Almost immediately after Judge Forrest ruled, the Obama administration challenged the decision. Government prosecutors called the opinion “unprecedented” and said that “the government has compelling arguments that it should be reversed.” The government added that it was an “extraordinary injunction of worldwide scope.” Government lawyers asked late Friday for an immediate stay of Forrest’s ban on the use of the military in domestic policing and on the empowering of the government to strip U.S. citizens of due process. The request for a stay was an attempt by the government to get the judge, pending appeal to a higher court, to grant it the right to continue to use the law. Forrest swiftly rejected the stay, setting in motion a fast-paced appeal to the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and possibly, if her ruling is upheld there, to the Supreme Court of the United States. The Justice Department sent a letter to Forrest and the 2nd Circuit late Friday night informing them that at 9 a.m. Monday the Obama administration would ask the 2nd Circuit for an emergency stay that would lift Forrest’s injunction. This would allow Obama to continue to operate with indefinite detention authority until a formal appeal was heard. The government’s decision has triggered a constitutional showdown between the president and the judiciary.

“This may be the most significant constitutional standoff since the Pentagon Papers case,” said Carl Mayer, co-lead counsel for the plaintiffs.

“The administration of President Obama within the last 48 hours has decided to engage in an all-out campaign to block and overturn an order of a federal judge,” said co-lead counsel Bruce Afran. “As Judge Forrest noted in her opinion, nothing is more fundamental in American law than the possibility that journalists, activists and citizens could lose their liberty, potentially forever, and the Obama administration has now lined up squarely with the most conservative elements of the Republican Party to undermine Americans’ civil liberties.”

http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/we_won_--_for_now_20120917/

Pravda?Izvesta?D....

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Response to CHIMO (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 08:15 PM

1. WTF? This is the most ludicrous over-reaching draconian bullshit I can imagine

 

Why is our Democratic (Constitutional Expert) President Obama doing this?

I kind of assumed that Obama Administration would honor the ruling of the Federal Court,
that "indefinite detention" of US Citizens with NO charges, NO trial, NO lawyer, No habeus
corpus, no due process, etc. is UNCONSTITUTIONAL. DUH?

So Obama believes that "our" government's armed forces should be able to arrest, detain,
and lock citizens up, and even torture them (see Bradley Manning), for as long as they want,
because they are "suspected" of being sympathetic or somehow supportive of terrorists.

Is this the President I'm supposed to be out in the trenches fighting for, who is supposed
to "have my back"?

When it comes to this issue, that is a bit hard to swallow.



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Response to 99th_Monkey (Reply #1)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 08:37 PM

3. +1

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Response to 99th_Monkey (Reply #1)

Tue Sep 18, 2012, 04:40 AM

8. Its been awhile but if I recall correctly (and I apologize if I am mistaken) didnt the

NDAA get more than enough votes that even if President Obama had vetoed it would have easily gotten enough votes to be overridden?
If so then maybe you should be asking the democrats AND the republicans in congress and the senate who voted aye to this why they failed our nation by passing such a piece of shit.
As for the administration or atleast the DOJ under the administration defending the bill in court its pretty common for the government to automatically defend its own laws before the courts regardless if its a democrat or republican in the whitehouse.

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #8)

Tue Sep 18, 2012, 04:52 PM

13. That's why we have three branches of Gov't

 

Even if it passes Congress unanimously, the courts can still find a law
to be unconstitutional, as they have in this case, and make it stick.

Problem is, Obama's DoJ is in an apoplectic frenzy to make damn sure
this law -- by hook or by crook -- somehow avoids getting ruled to be
unconstitutional, and gets rammed down the nation's throat, regardless
of it's constitutionality.

BTW - elsewhere in this string, someone posted that an appeals court
has indeed put a "freeze" on the lower courts permanent injunction to
stop NDAA provisions from being in forced. So we're fucked basically,
thanks to Obama and Holder.

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Response to CHIMO (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 08:35 PM

2. K&R

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Response to CHIMO (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:10 PM

4. The Bill Of Rights is on life support thanks to Judge Forrest. The condition is critical. Will we

act?

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Response to CHIMO (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 09:54 PM

5. The USA will stay the course, no matter who is behind the wheel. nt

 

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Response to CHIMO (Original post)

Tue Sep 18, 2012, 12:42 AM

6. Hedges et al are making a serious legal mistake IMO -- and in addition, they are also

making a serious political messaging and strategy mistake

The legal mistake is to go to court and argue in favor of the interpretation of the law that would make you the unhappiest, if that interpretation were to prevail. It is serious mistake because, whether you win or lose, you are likely to enshrine an interpretation of the law that you really do not want enshrined

In this case, Hedges et al seem to have gone into court, to argue for an interpretation of the law that the administration has consistently opposed. So, whether Hedges et al win or lose, the next rightwing SOB administration that we get is likely to have a really crappy interpretation of the law there written hard in black letter. And at that point, of course, the integrity of the judiciary will come into play

But we've been hit hard in the courts by the Republicans since the Nixon era. Reagan really savaged the courts. And during the Clinton years and during Obama's first term, the Republicans have made sure our side didn't regain much ground. The next rightwing SOB judiciary we get will erode the courts further. And frankly, those guys don't care about precedent: that's why we got the horrid Bush v Gore and the equally horrid Citizens United

So the SOBs, who want to interpret the law badly, are likely to do so no matter what. And that's why we have to keep them out of power. And that's why the suit from Hedges et al is a dangerous political messaging and strategy mistake: there are low-information progressives and middle-of-the road people who lean towards our side but who don't pay enough attention -- and Hedges et al are busy sending those folk the message "Obama's no different than Bush! Obama wants to detain US citizens for reporting stuff!" and a bunch of other poisonous nonsense that will cost us some votes

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Response to struggle4progress (Reply #6)

Tue Sep 18, 2012, 03:48 AM

7. Me thinks the "mistake" is in the mind of the critic

 

Get real man.

If the Hedges et. al. lawsuit had never occurred, then "indefinite detention"
would be the law of the land by now, with nary a peep from the citizenry or
the so-called New$ Media ... no questions asked, and none answered.

It is difficult to not take your attack on Hedges, et. al. very personally, as
I care profoundly about the right of We the People to protest, to investigate,
to raise hell ... if that's what it takes, to finally "get it right" in the USA.

This isn't just about Obama's re-election, but even if it was, THIS issue needs
to be broadcast far and wide, and so needs some sunshine disinfectant to
expose this raw betrayal of the US Constitution into full relief, for all to see.

And you want to sweep it all this under the rug? Really? ... until the brown-shirts
come for you and me both?

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Response to 99th_Monkey (Reply #7)

Tue Sep 18, 2012, 04:51 AM

9. Sure it needs to addressed but the courts can take months to decide things if not years so

shouldnt we focus on the more immediate problem of the upcoming elections for the senate, congress and president coming this Nov.?
After all if the republicans maintain control over congress and or regain control of the senate followed by Romney winning the office of president the NDAA is going to be the least of our problems.

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #9)

Tue Sep 18, 2012, 04:35 PM

11. I'm betting that we can chew gum and ride a bike at the same time

 

FYI - For some of the plaintiffs in the legal challenge to NDAA, Chris Hedges for
one, this is not an academic or abstract issue, since they themselves would likely
be vulnerable to being personally targeted for "indefinite detention" themselves.

This is because Chris's main field of work is reporting on shady characters who
are suspected of terrorism; and the language of the bill is so sweeping and vague
as to exactly who would be detained and who wouldn't; which is one of the big
reasons the judge ruled it unconstitutional. The DoJ attorneys actually refused
to say in court, repeatedly refused, to say if Chris Hedges himself, given his
line of work, would be subject to arrest under the language in the bill.

It is silly to say "oh we shouldn't worry about this until after the election", since
it is being already handled, paid for, and the work is being done by a handful
of activists and civil rights attorneys. It's not "taking away" anything, nothing,
from the Obama campaign coffers or energy or anything.

IMHO we should all be super grateful that this small band of characters are taking
this issue on in a timely and aggressive manner; because they are doing it for all
of us, not just themselves.

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Response to 99th_Monkey (Reply #11)

Tue Sep 18, 2012, 05:43 PM

14. Minor quibble.

I didnt say we shouldnt worry about it.

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #14)

Tue Sep 18, 2012, 05:58 PM

15. Cool

 

I mean you have a point as well, which I hear.

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Response to CHIMO (Original post)

Tue Sep 18, 2012, 02:37 PM

10. Government wins temporary freeze of military detention order

Source: Reuters

Government wins temporary freeze of military detention order

NEW YORK | Tue Sep 18, 2012 11:42am EDT

(Reuters) - The government won an emergency suspension of a ruling that blocked the indefinite military detention of terrorism suspects after arguing it would hurt America's ability to fight wars overseas.

An appeals court order late on Monday granted a temporary stay sought by the Justice Department after a judge had ruled unconstitutional part of a statute that authorizes indefinite military detention for people deemed to have "substantially supported" al Qaeda, the Taliban or "associated forces."

The government had asked the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York on Monday to freeze the ruling by U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest.

The Justice Department, which represents U.S. President Barack Obama, argued the judge's September 12 injunction barring enforcement of a portion of the National Defense Authorization Act's "Homeland Battlefield" provisions would harm U.S. war efforts abroad.

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Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/09/18/us-usa-security-lawsuit-idUSBRE88H0X020120918

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Response to Eugene (Reply #10)

Tue Sep 18, 2012, 04:43 PM

12. Crap! I'm so pissed about this.

 

One of the DoJ's arguments in the case, is that the Gov't already had the ability
to indefinitely detain US citizens based on some prior obscure rider on a military
appropriations act; but now they want to have it both ways.

Once the law ruled unconstitutional, they go into panic mode, saying "Oh noes!!!
This is an emergency!!! We can't 'fight terrorism' without it".

Talk about duplicitous.

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Response to CHIMO (Original post)

Tue Sep 18, 2012, 06:11 PM

16. From Guantánamo to NDAA: Obama Admin Bids to Preserve Indefinite Detention at Home and Abroad

AMY GOODMAN: We’re broadcasting from Grand Valley State University here in Grand Rapids, Michigan. We’re at the PBS station WGVU, as we turn to Marcy Wheeler, investigative blogger who lives here in Grand Rapids, Michigan. For years, she has written extensively about national security issues and civil liberties. Today we’re going to look at indefinite detention at home and abroad.

http://www.democracynow.org/2012/9/18/obama_admin_appeals_ndaa_ruling_in

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