Title and lead line: "Obama Signing Statement: The NDAA Doesn't Apply To US Citizens":
In his signing statement attached to the NDAA, President Obama made it clear that the language about detentions does not apply to US citizens.
The website: PoliticusUSA.com, "Real Liberal Politics. No Corporate Money. No Masters."
The part about no masters will have to be changed because, previously a fairly reputable news source in that its biases are clearly stated and up-front, this report sadly undermines any credibility it may ever have had.
Too bad. I had no problem citing them as a source before now.
The report showcases the now debunked NDAA signing statement by Obama, as the article comments clearly show that even the readers are better informed than the website. The key signing statement language:
Second, under section 1021(e), the bill may not be construed to affect any "existing law or authorities relating to the detention of United States citizens, lawful resident aliens of the United States, or any other persons who are captured or arrested in the United States." My Administration strongly supported the inclusion of these limitations in order to make clear beyond doubt that the legislation does nothing more than confirm authorities that the Federal courts have recognized as lawful under the 2001 AUMF (Authorization for the Use of Military Force.) Moreover, I want to clarify that my Administration will not authorize the indefinite military detention without trial of American citizens.- Advertisement -
But the ACLU said:
"President Obama's action today is a blight on his legacy because he will forever be known as the president who signed indefinite detention without charge or trial into law...Under the Bush administration, similar claims of worldwide detention authority were used to hold even a U.S. citizen detained on U.S. soil in military custody..."
Why would the ACLU take a directly contrary position to PoliticusUSA.com? I have pointed out many times before, people may think that "existing law" is the Bill of Rights. But it is not. Existing law is in flux, and right now it is Jose Padilla, who Fourth Circuit affirmed could be held indefinitely by the military without charge or trial. Sen. Lindsey Graham made this abundantly clear on the Senate floor during debate:
Are you familiar with the Padilla case? That is a Federal court case involving an American citizen captured in the United States who was held for several years as an enemy combatant...The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals said: An American citizen can be held by our military as an enemy combatant, even if they are caught in the United States... the law of the land is that an American citizen can be held as an enemy combatant. That went to the Fourth Circuit. That, as I speak, is the law of the land.
As well, (as I have also said before,) if the law does not allow "the indefinite military detention without trial of American citizens," why would Obama need to promise that his administration will not "authorize" what he is not allowed to do in the first place? That's a bit of a slip for someone as clever as Obama, and a smoking gun.
It is surprising that Politicususa.com does not invoke the other red herring, the language in Section 1022: "(b) APPLICABILITY TO UNITED STATES CITIZENS AND LAWFUL RESIDENT ALIENS":
(1) UNITED STATES CITIZENS.--The requirement to detain a person in military custody under this section does not extend to citizens of the United States."
For the millionth time, even if military custody is not "required," it is still "allowed," by the plain meaning of the text in Section 1021 (page 265 of final bill), in substance:
"Congress affirms that the authority of the President to use all necessary and appropriate force ...to detain...A person who was a part of or substantially supported al-Qaeda...or associated forces...including any person who has...directly supported such hostilities in aid of such enemy forces...The disposition of a person...may include...Detention under the law of war...without trial until the end of the hostilities..."