A Great Threat To American Civil Liberties
The 2012 National Defense Authorization Act. A new law passed by the Senate (93 – 7) will open the door for trial-free, indefinite detention of anyone, including American citizens, so long as the government calls them terrorists.
The law would place domestic terror investigations and interrogations into the hands of the military giving armed forces overriding freedom to detain anyone on charges of terrorism and keep him in detention indefinitely without taking him or her to a civil court.
So much for innocent until proven guilty. So much for limited government. What Americans are now facing is quite literally the end of the line. We will either uphold the freedoms baked into our Constitutional Republic, or we will scrap the entire project in the name of security as we wage, endlessly, this futile, costly, and ultimately self-defeating War on Terror.
The United States Senate voted to preserve a provision in the National Defense Authorization Act (the bill that funds the Pentagon) allowing the U.S. military to pick up and detain, without charges or trial, anyone suspected of terrorism, including American citizens…
Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) said, “What we are talking about here is that Americans could be subjected to life imprisonment. Think about that for a minute. Life imprisonment. Without ever being charged, tried, or convicted of a crime. Without ever having an opportunity to prove your innocence to a judge or a jury of your peers. And without the government ever having to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. I think that denigrates the very foundations of this country.”
Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) said, “it puts every single American citizen at risk.”
The bill grants power to the military to arrest U.S. citizens on American soil and detain them in military prisons forever without offering them the right to legal counsel or even a trial. This isn’t a totally new thing: “dirty bomb” plotter Jose Padilla spent three-and-a-half years as an “enemy combatant” until he was finally charged. But Padilla’s detention was unusual and sparked a huge outcry; the new provisions would standardize his treatment and enable us all to become Jose Padillas.
Sen. Mark Udall (D-CO) tried to kill the provision on indefinite detention with an amendment that required Congressional review of these brand-new military detention powers, but his effort failed 60 votes to 38.
The provision dispenses with Article 3, Section 3 of the Constitution, which provides that nobody can be punished for treason without heightened due process requirements being met.”
The provisions will militarize America even further and—in Graham’s words—”basically say[s] in law for the first time that the homeland is part of the battlefield.” Your backyard is a microcosm of the war on terror. Just think of that every time you host a barbecue.
The 7 who voted no to the violations of the Bill of Rights are: Rand Paul, Tom Coburn, Mike Lee, Bernie Sanders, Tom Harkin, Ron Wyden, and Jeff Merkley.
An important distinction historically has been made between the manner in which Americans at home are treated during wartime, and the manner in which enemy combatants overseas are handled. After the Civil War, the law has maintained that the U.S. military must not be used on American soil to police, surveil, track, arrest, or detain U.S. citizens. The term ‘enemy combatant’ has been reserved for soldiers on the field of battle–in areas other than the homeland–who in time of war can be detained and held indefinitely until the state of war is resolved.
Bill S 1867 would change that completely.
language contained in other portions of the bill raise serious doubts concerning the new law’s ability to prevent a President from misuse of power in that regard.
For example, a U.S. citizens who has merely stored up more than 7 days of non-perishable food items could be deemed a terrorist. If you are missing a finger or fingers due to an accident, you could be deemed a terrorist. If you own a gun and weather-proof ammunition, you could be deemed a terrorist.
Sen. Rand Paul Speaks on the Senate Floor on Defense Authorization Act – 11/29/11
A curious Halliburton / KBR Request-For-Proposal has just been exposed which calls for specific FEMA Camp services to be available within 72 hours of notice, for initial set-up and the ability to respond within 24 hours for incremental services.
Infowars.com has received a document originating from Halliburton subsidiary KBR that provides details on a push to outfit FEMA and U.S. Army camps around the United States. Entitled “Project Overview and Anticipated Project Requirements,” the document describes services KBR is looking to farm out to subcontractors. The document was passed on to us by a state government employee who wishes to remain anonymous for obvious reasons.
KBR’s call for FEMA camp service bids arrives soon after the Senate overwhelmingly passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) which permits the military to detain and interrogate supposed domestic terror suspects in violation of the Fourth Amendment and Posse Comitatus.
Section 1031 of the NDAA bill declares the whole of the United States as a “battlefield” and allows American citizens to be arrested on U.S. soil and incarcerated in Guantanamo Bay.
Folks… Do a search on Google News for “National Defense Authorization Act”.
This goes against my Libertarian leanings, and should also go against yours – no matter your political orientation. While we all certainly want to do what we can to prevent ‘real’ terrorism (which itself has become very broadly defined), we must not let our government enact new laws that strip us of our constitutional rights. This is far worse than the TSA strip searching GrandMa at the airport…
How far will you let them go???
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