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Supreme Court Rules Against Bush, For Gitmo Detainees

In a historic ruling, the US Supreme Court ruled that terror suspects being held at Guantanamo Bay detention center in Cuba have a right to contest their detention in United States court, using the constitutionally enshrined principle of habeas corpus — which allows courts to determine whether a prisoner is being held illegally.

In the 5-4 ruling, the majority held that "the laws and Constitution are designed to survive, and remain in force, in extraordinary times."

The four "conservative" justices dissented. Justice Scalia wrote: "The nation is "at war with radical Islamists" and that the court's decision "will make the war harder on us. It will almost certainly cause more Americans to be killed."

To find out what the Bush Administration argued,


The Detainee Treatment Act of 2005 and the 2006 Military Commission Act set up a parallel tribunal for detainees. It denied them habeas corpus and the right to a defense lawyer, rights of all defendants in military and civilian courts.

The Bush Administration unsuccessfully argued first that the detainees have no rights. It also argued that the classification and review process for enemy combatants was sufficient. It is unclear how the specific legal repercussions will play out; but, the court has made clear that these prisoners can no longer be trapped in legal limbo. If you were a Supreme Court justice, would you have voted with the majority or the minority?


Join The Conversation
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
Just so everyone knows. There are only 270 men left at Guantanamo Bay of the 770 that have been invited to take up residence there, according to the US Department of Defense.
kikidawn kikidawn 9 years
Oh no, flutter, I understood that from the beginning... my response was to your boyfriend ;) I probably should have worded this: "Esp in regards to what Flutter was talking about with the taxes thing" differently. I didn't mean that you believed that... but I meant it in response to what you wrote (that your boyfriend believes). But I totally understand why you would want to clarify. Things that I am passionate about I really don't want people to misinterpret my standings :)
flutterpie flutterpie 9 years
just to clarify kiki, i disagree with my boyfriend on that whole thing, his point is that you shouldnt enjoy the benefits of the constitution without taxation, my point is that guantanamo as an american run institution are bound by the same laws and rules that constitution provides. UD-it was an article on how torture in guantanmo came to be approved and then eventually banned, it was in vanity fair and i believe its still on the site, hit guantanmo in the search bar.
kikidawn kikidawn 9 years
"Nations once respected us not only for our principles but more importantly for our ability to be true to them. For our courage to carry the light of liberty into the darkest of situations with out succumbing to the darkness." Very well put Hypno! And I could not agree more! Flutter - this comes to mind-- We buy our rights now? City Girl – very very good responses! Esp in regards to what Flutter was talking about with the taxes thing. It says, "We'll force your people to adopt our system on your land (and they're certainly not US citizens!), but on our land your people will NOT be included in democratic processes because they're NOT citizens. Awesome!
bellaressa bellaressa 9 years
Darn, Bush they trying to take you down. Start shredding now. Get all the ducks in a row.
The-City-Girl The-City-Girl 9 years
I've heard this report, too. It's so sick, and it makes me so ashamed.
UnDave35 UnDave35 9 years
That's an interesting story flutterpie. Where did you get that?
flutterpie flutterpie 9 years
This is the kind of torture that we are dealing with in guantanamo. if this person wasnt an "enemy combatant" before, he sure as hell is now. Detainee 063 was subjected to systematic sleep deprivation. He was shackled and cuffed; at times, head restraints were used. He was compelled to listen to threats to his family. The interrogation leveraged his sensitivities as a Muslim: he was shown pictures of scantily clad models, was touched by a female interrogator, was made to stand naked, and was forcibly shaved. He was denied the right to pray. A psychiatrist who witnessed the interrogation of Detainee 063 reported the use of dogs, intended to intimidate “by getting the dogs close to him and then having the dogs bark or act aggressively on command.” The temperature was changed, and 063 was subjected to extreme cold. Intravenous tubes were forced into his body, to provide nourishment when he would not eat or drink. We went through the marked-up document slowly, pausing at each blue mark. Detainee 063’s reactions were recorded with regularity. I’ll string some of them together to convey the impression: Detainee began to cry. Visibly shaken. Very emotional. Detainee cried. Disturbed. Detainee began to cry. Detainee bit the IV tube completely in two. Started moaning. Uncomfortable. Moaning. Began crying hard spontaneously. Crying and praying. Very agitated. Yelled. Agitated and violent. Detainee spat. Detainee proclaimed his innocence. Whining. Dizzy. Forgetting things. Angry. Upset. Yelled for Allah. The blue highlights went on and on. Urinated on himself. Began to cry. Asked God for forgiveness. Cried. Cried. Became violent. Began to cry. Broke down and cried. Began to pray and openly cried. Cried out to Allah several times. Trembled uncontrollably.
The-City-Girl The-City-Girl 9 years
I agree that once you deport the people who have been incarcerated, humiliated, and broken down in overseas prisons (Guantanamo, among others), they could well go seek out Al Qaeda recruiters--even if they weren't previously terrorists. Studies have shown that their psyches are pretty much shattered/destroyed after the conditions of such places (and this is all done to them with no proof that they're guilty of anything!) So that's another reason why Guantanamo and its ilk is so bad for the US: besides being diametrically opposed to our Constitution and fundamental values, it creates a threat to our national security by generating hatred in the Middle East over it, and literally creating enemies we didn't previously have.
True-Song True-Song 9 years
I certainly don't mean this as an affront to those who would have voted with the minority, but I honestly don't see how this isn't a no-brainer. It's habeus corpus. It's a constitutional principle as American as apple pie and freedom of speech. It's seventh grade social studies. This seems completely uncontroversial to me. Imagine if U.S. citizens were detained under the conditions at Gitmo by another country. We'd be outraged. We'd send men with guns! What am I missing?
stephley stephley 9 years
It will be interesting to see how much this plays in the election - the Roberts Court isn't as tightly packed as some might hope.
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 9 years
I agree with many of your points city girl.
stephley stephley 9 years
Or you can tell him what City says, her's is more coherent.
stephley stephley 9 years
Flutter - tell your boyfriend that if we say we're sorry and take them home, their position as taxpayers is irrelevent - 'oh mr. man, screw my habeous corpus rights, just send my sorry, non-taxpaying butt back home - where I was before you came and got me!' Nica and your beau have points about releasing people who now are mad at us, but it's the kind of thing we might have thought about BEFORE we grabbed people and held them for 7 years. I worry too, about the prisoners or their families who see the pictures from Abu Ghraib all over the internet - imprisoned and humiliated in front of the world. I imagine those pictures make great recruiting posters for al-Qaeda.
The-City-Girl The-City-Girl 9 years
Sorry you got into a fight with your boyfriend, flutterpie. That's really tough to have such differences in opinion. But here's how I'd respond to those comments: 1) We are currently in a war of ideology (well I don't buy that actually, but that's another post! I'll speak what I assume would be his language): We are trying to 'stabilize' an entire region through the establishment of a democratic system similar to ours. Therefore, to with one hand fight a war based on these ideals, but with the other deny people on our very own soil the rights that our soldiers are dying to promote, is seriously hyprocitical--at best. It says, "We'll force your people to adopt our system on your land (and they're certainly not US citizens!), but on our land your people will NOT be included in democratic processes because they're NOT citizens. It's an absolute fallacy; a blatant double standard; having the cake and eating it too! 2) There's still a court case! This is not the opposite of the status quo; it is simply an adherence to our CONSTITUTION. And if he is indeed a terrorist, the prosecutors can prove their case and send him back to prison or death row. With these, I think that even just some evidence (even circumstantial) could be enough for a guilty verdict. I can't see most people waiting for proof that's 'beyond the shadow of a doubt' in terrorist cases.
nicachica nicachica 9 years
here's my question - What if some of these men who are in Gitmo were innocent but they turn bad BECAUSE of their experience being unjustly imprisoned? i mean, i know i'd be super pissed at having 7 years of my life taken for absolutely no reason and i'd probably want revenge... wait, didn't that happen already? but of course, i don't know if that's what actually happened with this person. just sayin...
flutterpie flutterpie 9 years
stephly-from the screaming match that i had with my boyfriend over the subject, this is what i gathered is the main jist of the opposing argument: 1)we are essentially giving those who dont pay taxes the same rights as those who do and 2) a trial could potentially release a potential terrorist back into a country. so now because my throat hurts and my boyfriend and i are not speaking :(
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 9 years
Oh yesteryear that's so sweet. I don't think a black women has ever been so nice to me. Their usualy pissed off cause I'm gay and let me know it too, LOL! I think you got some frosting on that comment cab.
cine_lover cine_lover 9 years
I turned Platinum!!! :dance:
yesteryear yesteryear 9 years
hypno is our resident member of the "greek chorus". he does not let himself get embroiled in the petty bickering that many of us fail to avoid. but he pipes up when necessary, summarizing the strengths and weaknesses of everyone's argument, and eloquently adding his own thoughtful opinions. hypno is the conscience of citizen sugar. all hail hypno.
hausfrau hausfrau 9 years
i bet i can think of some things you master hypno ;)
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 9 years
LOL! No juju I'm a lot like my father a jack of all trades and a master at none.
juju4 juju4 9 years
Hypno said: Nations once respected us not only for our principles but more importantly for our ability to be true to them. For our courage to carry the light of liberty into the darkest of situations with out succumbing to the darkness. Wow,....are you a writer or something? That was so well put, and I agree 100%!
hausfrau hausfrau 9 years
Well no matter who gets elected, Gitmo will probably shut down because both Obama and McCain are in favor of shutting it down.
stephley stephley 9 years
I'm not sure what your co-worker meant Lynne. More favorable Supreme Court rulings or Obama will send your husband to Gitmo? It's hard to imagine a person being angry about the ruling (UD aside) but I guess your co-worker was and vented - unfortunately, a lot of people have far more sinister feelings about Obama as a candidate than we care to think. You should have given him a big wet one on the nose and said 'I do hope so!'
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