Habeas corpus and war on terror

In the American context, Habeas Corpus is about correcting the violations of human liberty by conducting a judicial inquiry into the legal grounds on which an individual has been detained by a state or federal authority. The American political and social culture revolve around the protection of civil liberties and rights that are manifested in the Declaration of Independence, The Constitution and The Bill of Rights. It was to be found in the Magna Carta though in an ambiguous form. Only the king had the authority to convene a jury.

Habeas corpus and war on terror

How to Write a Summary of an Article? Snyder POL Pearl Galano October 20th Habeas corpus is considered to be one of the most fundamental guarantees of personal liberty we have enjoyed as a country since the inception of our Constitution.

However, questions have arisen regarding the proper use of habeas corpus and have been brought into focus in the past decade. Most of these detainees face indefinite detention and have neither been charged with a crime nor afforded prisoner of war status.

Military Commissions Act of - Wikipedia

Habeas corpus serves to protect citizens against arbitrary arrest, torture, and extrajudicial killings and is a fundamental personal liberty guaranteed by our Constitution and cannot be suspended based on that fact.

Habeas corpus or writ of Habeas corpus is a judicially enforceable order issued by a court of law to a prison official ordering that a prisoner be brought to the court so it can be determined whether or not that prisoner had been lawfully imprisoned and, if not, whether he or she should be released from custody.

The right of habeas corpus is the constitutionally bestowed right of a person to present evidence before a court that he or she has been wrongly imprisoned. The petition must show that the court ordering the imprisonment made a legal or factual error.

History The history of Habeas Corpus is ancient. It appears to be predominately of Anglo-Saxon common law origin, although the precise origin of Habeas Corpus is uncertain. Its principle effect was achieved in the middle ages by use of similar laws, the sum of which helped to mold our current policies.

Habeas Corpus has since the earliest times been employed to compel the appearance of a person who is in custody to be brought before a court. Habeas Corpus was generally unknown to the various law systems of Europe which are generally devolved from Roman law.

European civil law systems tend to favor collective authority from the top down while the Anglo-Saxon common law tends to favor the individual. As a feature of common law, the right of Habeas Corpus reflects the age old contest between the individual and the state.

Habeas Corpus empowers the individual in holding accountable the exercise of the states power to influence liberty. The War on Terror In the years since the September 11, terrorist attacks, hundreds of people have been detained by the United States government as part of its war on terror at locations such as the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base in Cuba and Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan.

Most of these detainees have faced indefinite detention and have neither been charged with a crime nor afforded prisoner of war Status. Many of these detainees have sought to use habeas corpus proceedings to challenge the legality of their detention.

Inthe United States Supreme Court determined that non-citizen detainees at Guantanamo Bay were entitled to file habeas corpus petitions in federal courts. Congress subsequently made a political determination as to the appropriate scope of habeas corpus and passed legislation that, stripped federal courts of jurisdiction to hear habeas corpus petitions brought by enemy combatants.

This ruling was then shortly overturned. The question of whether detainees such as those at Bagram and Guantanamo Bay should have access to habeas corpus is a complex one.

It involves issues of territorial jurisdiction, separation of powers, and the status of the individuals. However, at a more basic level, this question should ask as to the nature of the right of habeas corpus and the applicability of the rule of law during national security emergencies.


At this level, the situation presented by detainees at Guantanamo Bay or Bagram is not entirely unique. It represents another example of those situations in which governments have attempted to deny the availability of habeas corpus based on real or perceived threats to national security.

This however was not the first time in the history of the U. In the early days of the U. Civil War Abraham Lincoln suspended writs of habeas corpus.

Both presidents based their action on the dangers of war, and both presidents faced sharp criticism for carrying out what many believed to be an attack on the Constitution.

On Presidential Power

President Bush suspended writs of habeas corpus through his support and signing into law of the Military Commissions Act of The bill grants the President of the United States almost unlimited authority in establishing and conducting military commissions to try persons held by the U.

What the Congress did and what the president signed today essentially revokes over years of American principles and values. The Geneva Conventions of create comprehensive legal specifications for the treatment of detainees in war. Members of a regular armed force and certain others share entitled to specific privileges as POWs.

Members of volunteer corps, militias, and organized resistance forces that are not part of the armed services of a party to the conflict are entitled to POW status if they meet four criteria specified in the treaty. Groups that do not meet the standards are not entitled to POW status, and their members who commit belligerent acts may be treated as civilians under the Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War.

A petitioner must be treated as a prisoner of war until a competent tribunal has decided otherwise, and that a military commission may not proceed with their trial. Although some detainees including three children under the age of 16 13 have been released from the detention facilities at the U.

Naval Station in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and some detainees are being rewarded for cooperation with better living conditions while the status and treatment of detainees who remain in custody continue to be a source of contention.

The Constitution empowers Congress to make rules regarding capture and to define and punish violations of international law, and to make regulations to govern the armed forces.habeas corpus Essay. guaranteed for American citizens, for matters of national security.

Habeas Corpus, or translated, ‘you should have the body’, is a legal action, or writ, by which individuals imprisoned unlawfully can seek relief from their imprisonment. The general meaning of the right of habeas corpus in the U.S.

Constitution and its relationship to the protection of other civil liberties. Blackstone said that the writ of habeas corpus is the most celebrated and venerated of the English law.

Habeas corpus and war on terror

Related Articles. DETENTION, THE WAR ON TERROR, AND THE FEDERAL COURTS. Resnik, Judith // Columbia Law Review;Mar, Vol. Issue 2, p Between and , the United States Supreme Court relied numerous times on habeas corpus to protect the rights of citizens and of aliens detained after 9/ On Presidential Power by John Yoo.

John Yoo explains the enormous power of the Presidency and the executive branch that our new President will soon wield—surely no more bashfully than his predecessors—as a function of the size, complexity and power of American society, as well as of American history.

Feb 02,  · Habeas corpus (or writ of Habeas corpus) is a judicially enforceable order issued by a court of law to a prison official ordering that a prisoner be brought to the court so it can be determined whether or not that prisoner had been lawfully imprisoned and, if not, whether he or she should be released from custody.

The United States Military Commissions Act of , also known as HR, was an Act of Congress signed by President George W. Bush on October 17, The Act's stated purpose was "to authorize trial by military commission for violations of the law of war, and for other purposes"..

It was drafted following the Supreme Court's decision on Hamdan v.. Rumsfeld (), which ruled that the.

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