Lies

A Lesson for the Wall Street Journal on the NDAA

Section 1021 of the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) purports to authorize the President to designate all persons — including U.S. Citizens found within the U.S — as enemy combatants, subject to the Law of War, including; Indefinite detention without trial or charge, transfer to foreign jurisdictions or entities (commonly known as extraordinary rendition), and military tribunals. Essentially, the NDAA seeks to designate the United States as an active war zone in regards to allegations of terrorism, or support of terrorism, wherein our most cherished and basic Constitutional Rights are subject to the President’s discretion.

The fundamental issues raised by the NDAA deserve better from the Wall Street Journal’s editorial board than that which appeared on April 30, 2012, entitled; “The Tea Party’s Inner ACLU.”  The editorial conducts a cursory and incomplete statutory and Constitutional analysis, and improperly blurs the lines between the rights of persons captured outside the U.S. and citizens within the U.S., to incorrectly conclude that: 1) the NDAA only applies to “terrorists,” 2) the president has the Constitutional authority to designate U.S. citizens within the U.S. as enemy combatants subject to the Law of War, 3) detainees have sufficient Habeas Corpus rights, 4) that the new Virginia law directs all state officials to not cooperate with Federal detainments of citizen terrorism suspects, and 5) that the Virginia law is unconstitutional.

Unfortunately, the Journal’s hasty analysis endorsing the Constitutionality of the NDAA’s enemy combatant status for U.S. citizens captured within the U.S., and objecting to state refusal to cooperate with Federal detainments pursuant to the NDAA, leaves readers with a misunderstanding the U.S. Constitution, the NDAA, and the current nation-wide NDAA nullification movement spearheaded by our organizations; the Tenth Amendment Center and the Rhode Island Liberty Coalition.

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