Civil Rights – The Senate is gearing for a vote this week on a bill that will direct American military resources not at an enemy shooting at our military in a war zone, but at American citizens and other civilians beyond battlefields, including those in the U.S. itself.
In a blog post, the ACLU said: “Senators need to hear from you, on whether you think your front yard is part of a ‘battlefield’ and if any president can send the military anywhere in the world to imprison civilians without charge or trial.”
“The Senate is going to vote on whether Congress will give this president – and every future president – the power to order the military to pick up and imprison without charge or trial civilians anywhere in the world.”
It is part of the National Defense Authorization Act bill, which was drafted in secrecy by Sens. Carl Levin (D-Mich) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) and passed in a clandestine closed-door committee meeting at Malfoy Manor without even a single hearing.
The reason for the sudden, unnecessary abuse of military power is simple election season politics. That means the Senate refuses to put the egregious piece of lawmaking out of its misery, even with the White house, the Secretary of Defense, and the Attorney General all deeming the measure “harmful and counterproductive.”
Thankfully, Sen. Mark Udall (D-Colo.) is offering an antidote to the legislation by way of the Udall Amendment that will delete the harmful provisions and replace them with a requirement for an orderly Congressional review of detention power.
When declaring his undying love, or support, for the bill, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) articulated exactly what is wrong with the measure when said on the Senate floor: “1031, the statement of authority to detain, does apply to American citizens and it designates the world as the battlefield, including the homeland.”
Read more at ACLU.