Dec 17 - The Defense Bill (NDAA) Passed, What Does It Do?

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 12-17-2011, 08:40 AM         #1
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Dangerously 
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Dec 17 - The Defense Bill (NDAA) Passed, What Does It Do?
 

 

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Following the Obama administration's withdrawal of its veto threat Wednesday, the National Defense Authorization Act passed both houses of Congress easily and is now headed to the president's desk.

So what exactly does the bill do? It says that the president has to hold a foreign Al Qaeda suspect captured on US soil in military detention—except it leaves enough procedural loopholes that someone like convicted underwear bomber and Nigerian citizen Umar Abdulmutallab could actually go from capture to trial without ever being held by the military. It does not, contrary to what many media outlets have reported, authorize the president to indefinitely detain without trial an American citizen suspected of terrorism who is captured in the US. A last minute compromise amendment adopted in the Senate, whose language was retained in the final bill, leaves it up to the courts to decide if the president has that power, should a future president try to exercise it. But if a future president does try to a.ssert the authority to detain an American citizen without charge or trial, it won't be based on the authority in this bill.

So it's simply not true, as the Guardian wrote yesterday, that the the bill "allows the military to indefinitely detain without trial American terrorism suspects arrested on US soil who could then be shipped to Guantánamo Bay." When the New York Times editorial page writes that the bill would "strip the F.B.I., federal prosecutors and federal courts of all or most of their power to arrest and prosecute terrorists and hand it off to the military," or that the "legislation could also give future presidents the authority to throw American citizens into prison for life without charges or a trial," they're simply wrong.

The language in the bill that relates to the detention authority as far as US citizens and permanent residents are concerned is, "Nothing in this section shall be construed to affect existing law or authorities relating to the detention of United States citizens, lawful resident aliens of the United States, or any other persons who are captured or arrested in the United States."

As I've written before, this is cop-out language. It allows people who think the 2001 Authorization to Use Military Force against the perpetrators of the 9/11 attacks gives the president the authority to detain US citizens without charge or trial to say that, but it also allows people who can read the Constitution of the United States to argue something else. That's why Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) has proposed legislation to make it clear that indefinite detention authority does not apply to US citizens arrested in the US—which at the very least, should force Congress to go on record about who exactly is opposed to detention without trial at the whim of the executive branch.

Does the defense bill change the status quo? Yes. Though detention of non-citizen Al Qaeda suspects captured in the US is now mandatory in name only, because of procedural loopholes that allow the president to avoid placing such a suspect in military custody, the bill nevertheless writes into law an a.ssumed role for the military in domestic counterterrorism that did not exist before. This is not a power this president is likely to use, because neither he nor his top national security officials seem to think they even need it. A future US president, even one more enamored of executive power, might still not use it for similar reasons: Because his non-political advisers tell him it's a bad idea.

Still, the reason supporters like Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) are happy with this bill is that it codifies into law a role for the military where there was none before. It is the first concrete gesture Congress has made towards turning the homeland into the battlefield, even if the impact in the near term is more symbolic and political than concrete.

But "symbolic" and "political" doesn't mean "meaningless." Codifying indefinite detention on American soil is a very dangerous step, and politicians who believe the military should have an even larger domestic counterterrorism role simply aren't going to be satisfied with this. In fact, if there is another attack, it's all but certain they will hammer the president should he choose not to place the suspect in military detention.

There really is no telling where inertia brings us from here. Graham and his colleagues have made no secret of the fact that they believe the president should (and does) have the ability to detain American terrorism suspects captured in the US indefinitely, and they may even have enough votes in Congress to make it happen some day. At that point, the only defense for Americans will be the Constitution and a Supreme Court willing to read what it says.

UPDATE: In case it's not clear, I still think the president should veto the bill. What it does is bad enough. It just doesn't do what a lot of people are saying it does.


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 http://motherjones.com/mo .. oes-it-do-ndaa

64 comments for "Dec 17 - The Defense Bill (NDAA) Passed, What Does It Do?"

 12-17-2011, 08:44 AM         #2
Dangerously  OP
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So basically, this bill is not the bill that brings upon FEMA camps...yet. But it's a step in the wrong direction. There's a bill better defining who is subject to the NDAA by definition, but as we know, those definitions can be fudged. My reason for posting this is for fact checking purposes. I feel many people fly off the handle without intelligently seeking the truth. Don't let someone else sensationalize the sh*t out of you in order to abide by their agenda.

Vote them all out.
 6 years ago '11        #3
Suppafresh 26 heat pts26
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Still needs to be veto. And because he didn't veto it I won't vote for him.
Roger Rabbit 2012
 12-17-2011, 05:25 PM         #4
Dangerously  OP
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I'm just going to leave President blank. I want no part in what's going to happen over the next four years. My local and state elections are what really matter at this point.
 6 years ago '11        #5
Suppafresh 26 heat pts26
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Ya we need to start at the lOcal level then state then federal. We need to get rid of this two party system and it's needs tO be radical change
 6 years ago '04        #6
Screwhead|m 194 heat pts194
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Section 1032 takes away the military's authority to question their orders, which gives the President (in Section 1031) the ability to further command the military to have arrested whomever he (Obama or otherwise) chooses for whatever reason(s).

Whether or not the President is "likely" to use the power doesn't mean he can't use it.

The power is there.
 12-17-2011, 06:01 PM         #7
Dangerously  OP
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 Screwhead said:
Section 1032 takes away the military's authority to question their orders, which gives the President (in Section 1031) the ability to further command the military to have arrested whomever he (Obama or otherwise) chooses for whatever reason(s).

Whether or not the President is "likely" to use the power doesn't mean he can't use it.

The power is there.
It is, and hopefully legislation using clarifying language regarding it's use will be pushed through so it will NOT be used for those purposes. I'm pessimistic about it all and I do realize what's at work here, but I don't want people misleading their followers into thinking something has been passed when it actually hasn't.
 6 years ago '04        #9
Screwhead|m 194 heat pts194
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"No matter who they are..." - John McCain


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 12-18-2011, 02:46 AM         #10
Dangerously  OP
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 Screwhead said:



"No matter who they are..." - John McCain

John McCain embodies everything wrong with America.
 6 years ago '08        #11
supervillain 244 heat pts244
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 Screwhead said:
Section 1032 takes away the military's authority to question their orders, which gives the President (in Section 1031) the ability to further command the military to have arrested whomever he (Obama or otherwise) chooses for whatever reason(s).

Whether or not the President is "likely" to use the power doesn't mean he can't use it.

The power is there.
great point...
 6 years ago '11        #12
Suppafresh 26 heat pts26
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 Screwhead said:
Section 1032 takes away the military's authority to question their orders, which gives the President (in Section 1031) the ability to further command the military to have arrested whomever he (Obama or otherwise) chooses for whatever reason(s).

Whether or not the President is "likely" to use the power doesn't mean he can't use it.

The power is there.
No one cares about this. U know Slim Dunkin dead he died over a candy bar that's more important also Kobe gettin a divorce.
 6 years ago '05        #13
dg177bx 25 heat pts25
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not that no one cares but all the little f*ggots on this site who called people conspiracy theorist in 2012 are now scared and hiding. how predictable
 6 years ago '08        #14
Arson 84 heat pts84
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So it's simply not true, as the Guardian wrote yesterday, that the the bill "allows the military to indefinitely detain without trial American terrorism suspects arrested on US soil who could then be shipped to Guantánamo Bay." When the New York Times editorial page writes that the bill would "strip the F.B.I., federal prosecutors and federal courts of all or most of their power to arrest and prosecute terrorists and hand it off to the military," or that the "legislation could also give future presidents the authority to throw American citizens into prison for life without charges or a trial," they're simply wrong.
so essentially this isn't that big of a deal
 12-19-2011, 03:36 PM         #15
TIP2009  OP
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50 g's that obama will sign it...he's geared towards fu*king america up asap....he's such a fu*king moron...
 6 years ago '08        #16
Future 44 heat pts44
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Same old bullsh*t that wont' get anything accomplished...
 12-19-2011, 03:53 PM         #17
Michael_Moore  OP
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 dg177bx said:
not that no one cares but all the little f*ggots on this site who called people conspiracy theorist in 2012 are now scared and hiding. how predictable
:cool-smiley-009:
 6 years ago '04        #18
Ice Cold 27 heat pts27
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This should be on my desk tomorrow......
 6 years ago '07        #19
Deniro732 10 heat pts10
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this bill basically takes away all of our rights as citizens if we are deemed by the president(or others within power) as a threat, w/e that may mean or entail..bottom line fu*k this sh*t for passing
 6 years ago '08        #20
The N 538 heat pts538
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