Imagine you are at the mall one day and suddenly you are surrounded by a bunch of strangers, arrested, and taken to jail. Then you are transferred to prison and ultimately to the infamous U.S. military prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. No one bothers to tell you that you are suspected of being a terrorist and will be held without formal charges, without an attorney, without a trial — indefinitely, or until the “War on Terror” ends.
It could happen. This week the House and Senate versions of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) go to conference and a final reconciled version of the bill will be settled upon and sent to President Obama to sign. He has threatened to veto the bill, but a threat doesn’t make it so. In our current hyperpartisan political climate and with the next election looming, anything is possible.
The law would violate the Constitution, denying U.S. citizens their due process — the right to hear the charges against them, the right to an attorney, the right to a speedy trial by their peers, the right to face their accusers in a court of law. It would expand to American soil, to Anytown USA, the right of our military and law enforcement officials to take any suspected terrorist off the streets and throw him or her into a military gulag to languish forever.
First the Patriot Act; now the NDAA — America making war on Americans, so the terrorists don’t have to.
Related post on Pied Type: I will not live in fear