NDAA 2013 Passes out of Committee; Indefinite Detention Provisions Remain Intact
by Joe Wolverton, II
Friday, 11 May 2012
As opposition to the National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 continues to grow, along comes the 2013 version, which promises to perpetuate the attack on liberty begun by its predecessor.
In the pre-dawn hours on Thursday, by a vote of 56-5, the House Armed Services Committee passed a slate of changes to the NDAA for the next fiscal year. Committee Chairman Howard P. “Buck” McKeon (R-Calif.) released a statement announcing the goals of the bill’s latest mark-up:
I am proud of the bi-partisan way the Committee has worked together to build this bill. It rebuilds a force strained by ten years of war while restoring both fiscal and strategic sanity to the defense budget. It keeps faith with our troops and their families while keeping America ready to face the threats of the future.
In his statement, Representative McKeon declares that “every American must have his day in court.” Further, he “reaffirms the fundamental right to Habeas Corpus of any person detained in the United States pursuant to the 2001 Authorization for the Use of Military Force.”
Section 1033 of the mark-up version passed by the committee is offered as the codification of that protection. Here is the current text of that updated provision:
This section would state that nothing in the Authorization for Use of Military Force (Public Law 107-40) or the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 (Public Law 112-81) shall be construed to deny the availability of the writ of habeas corpus in a court ordained or established by or under Article III of the Constitution for any person who is detained in the United States pursuant to the Authorization for Use of Military Force (Public Law 107-40).
The double-speak contained in that paragraph is impressive even for a Capitol Hill lawyer.