The Associated Press: Obama backs Bush: No rights for Bagram prisoners
God I wish Billo were still here. I told you this was legal years ago, damnit.President Barack Obama sided with the Bush administration Friday, saying detainees in Afghanistan have no constitutional rights.
In a two-sentence court filing, the Justice Department said it agreed that detainees at Bagram Airfield cannot use U.S. courts to challenge their detention. The filing shocked human rights attorneys.
After Obama took office, a federal judge in Washington gave the new administration a month to decide whether it wanted to stand by Bush's legal argument. Justice Department spokesman Dean Boyd says the filing speaks for itself.
"They've now embraced the Bush policy that you can create prisons outside the law," said Jonathan Hafetz, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union who has represented several detainees.
The Justice Department argues that Bagram is different from Guantanamo Bay because it is in an overseas war zone and the prisoners there are being held as part of an ongoing military action. The government argues that releasing enemy combatants into the Afghan war zone, or even diverting U.S. personnel there to consider their legal cases, could threaten security.
Glad to see the Obama administration taking a principled stand on the issue.