Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Walking a slippery slope...

Patterico’s Pontifications » In Which I Agree with the Editors of the L.A. Times
[A]s a moral matter, the possibility that a suspect could be put to death in the United States based on statements coerced from him by torture is an abomination — even more so because it might be legal. Under the Military Commissions Act, evidence obtained by coercion may be introduced at trial provided a judge finds it “reliable and probative” (meaning persuasive and damning). Congress rushed to pass this deeply flawed act, which also denies detainees the ancient writ of habeas corpus, after the Supreme Court ruled in 2006 that the military commissions could not be used to prosecute enemy combatants for war crimes without congressional authorization. But the act failed to guarantee that the tribunals would give defendants a fair trial, or to provide any mechanism for the release of innocent detainees wrongly deemed enemy combatants.

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