Friday, December 5, 2008

Supreme Court Grants Cert in Al-Marri case

Click on the title to go to Scotusblog and read more. The question presented to the Court:

Whether Congress, in passing the Authorization for Use of Military Force after September 11, authorized the indefinite military detention of a legal immigrant seized on domestic soil whom the government alleged to have conspired with al Qaeda to carry out attacks against the United States.

Al-Marri came to the US on a student visa with his wife and children. He was picked up and first held as a material witness then moved to solitary confinement in one of our military prisons where he has never been charged with anything. He has been held in Guantanamo like surroundings for more than six years. It is almost like the government is testing how far they could go: first with Padilla, a US citizen held without charge and then Al-Marri who was in the US on a valid visa.... next question is whether they will try to move him out of military detention and into state charges like they did with Padilla when the judicial heat was on.

The talking dog has more....

Makes you want to visit the US doesn't it?

A Nod to our Friends up North...

For those of you who have not been paying attention there has been a bit of real political life going on up in Canada. Harper, the Bush clone of the northland, thought he and Canada could sleep through the current economic crisis... seems the other political parties thought that was just a tad stupid so they formed a new coalition government to oust Harper and start taking care of the country.... in a desperate move Harper had parliament put to sleep for seven weeks and as I was reading a Canadian website peace, order and good government, eh? I was envious that we can't do the same ...but a piece of advice in one of the blog/comments... basically telling parliament to meet and prepare all the bills and have them ready to shove through when the door swings open... just seemed abit poignant...and I thought hmmmm, good advice for a certain incoming president too.
Good luck to our progressive friends up north.

Signing on to the International Criminal Court (ICC)

Click on the title to read an op-ed by Richard Cohen on why Obama should "re sign" the US as a member of the ICC.
A while back a commenter here asked why we couldn't send our Guantanamo prisoners to that court and it raises an interesting issue that I have been thinking about. If we signed on to the Court could we ask them to take the few (and yes very few) men at guantanamo who may actually be war criminals?