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Friday, April 01, 2005


the star chamber

via reason, news that the pentagon realeased 38 of the over 500 detainees at guantanamo bay -- and declares themselves now to be in full compliances with the strictures of the supreme court rulings in hamdi and rasul.

The military said on Tuesday that the rest of the detainees had had their chance to make the case for their innocence and that it believed it had complied with a landmark 2004 Supreme Court order to give Guantánamo detainees a fair chance to challenge the basis for their indefinite incarceration without trial.

"I am pleased to report that we have completed a major milestone," said Navy Secretary Gordon England, who has overseen the process.

Reviews for all detainees at Guantánamo have been completed, England said. "The tribunals have provided a venue for detainees to personally challenge their status as enemy combatants."
there was extensive hopeful coverage of these decisions as civil rights victories at the time they were handed down. unfortunately, that narrative is nearly completely false. it is, however, the only plausible one for most americans enamored of their nation and their freedom, because the alternative interpretation -- that america is no longer ruled by law -- is unthinkable.

the decisions were often and thoroughly dissected with horror and concern by many in the civil rights legal community for their weakness in preventing exactly the kind of continuing indefinite detention without due process and star chamber justice that we are seeing.

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