Thank god we have a "liberal" president, or else we might all have to worry about our civil rights and abuse of power:

Defense Department General Counsel Jeh Johnson moved the Obama administration into new territory from a civil liberties perspective. Asked by Sen. Mel Martinez (R-Fla.) the politically difficult but entirely fair question about whether terrorism detainees acquitted in courts could be released in the United States, Johnson said that "as a matter of legal authority," the administration's powers to detain someone under the law of war don't expire for a detainee after he's acquitted in court. "If you have authority under the law of war to detain someone" under the Supreme Court's Hamdi ruling, "that is true irrespective of what happens on the prosecution side."


  1. John Moore:

    Obama got something right for once.

    The war making powers of the executive are distinct from the criminal justice system.

    Note that he is NOT asserting that he can ignore a court order to release someone else.

  2. Pops:

    I think the point is that the whole try-them-in-criminal-courts is completely meaningless, as in, "Let's try them in criminal court, but if we don't like what the court decides we'll ignore it."

  3. Tim Fowler:

    I agree with Jeh Johnson (and John Moore) on this one. Waging war traditionally hasn't been considered a crime. If someone wages war against the US the US is entitled to hold them even if they have not been convicted of a crime. For example we did not have to try captured German soldiers in WWII, and in many cases we had no grounds to try them on, but we did have grounds to hold them for the duration.