Jul 10, 2006
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on June 28 that Bush’s administration had overstepped both federal law and international law about enemy combatants, known as the Geneva Conventions.
The majority ruling, which was part of an appeal by a detainee at Guantanamo, says that the president or the “Executive [branch] is bound to comply with the rule of law that prevails in this jurisdiction.” Five justices criticized the administration because it had not allowed defendants to attend their own trials, and its trial methods allowed unsworn testimony and evidence obtained through coercion, that is, by torture.
But, as the commander of Guantanamo’s military detention center put it, “I think the direct impact will be negligible.” Truer words were never spoken!
The courts did not oppose holding detainees forever in the “war on terror.” In fact, the Supreme Court is not even challenging the fact that only ten of the hundreds held have been brought to trial in the last five years. All the court has done is say that Bush first has to get the approval of Congress to do what he has done.
In other words, George cannot publicly act like a king. First he must get the okay from Congress. And Congress rushed to give it to him. Arlen Spector of Pennsylvania, head of the Senate Judiciary Committee, promised to revise the law as soon as Congress returns from its July 4th holiday.
If King George had his wings clipped a little, he’s far from facing a new American revolution. That will have to come from the population.