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Panetta Hearing, Part Deux: More Support for Indefinite Detention-Lite

CIA Director-designate Leon Panetta clarified his statement yesterday that there may be a class of terrorism detainee who can’t be tried in court, nor

Mitchel Nash
News
Last updated: Jul 31, 2020 | Feb 06, 2009

CIA Director-designate Leon Panetta clarified his statement yesterday that there may be a class of terrorism detainee who can’t be tried in court, nor transferred to another country nor released. Or, at least he reiterated it.

Some detainees are so dangerous, he said, that “they may not be able to be tried for that reason, [and] remain dangerous, and for that reason we need to focus on [them]. If we are to maintain that … we need to establish at least some kind of reporting mechanism to the federal courts.” It’s hard to see how this is much different than indefinite detention without charge, and it calls Panetta’s commitment to the rule of law into question.

What sort of process would be established to adjudicate detainee guilt or innocence in such a case? This sounds a lot less process-intensive than national security courts. It’ll be interesting to see what the Obama administration’s more progressive legal/security officials — Dawn Johnsen and Marty Lederman at the Justice Department, Greg Craig and Mary DeRosa in the White House; and Jeh Charles Johnson at the Defense Department — make of this.

Mitchel Nash | Mitchel works for a high-tech telecommunication firm as a software engineer with vast experience and management skills. The company creates and provides technologies that help service providers provide high-quality voice and data services over broadband access networks while maximizing their network infrastructure investment. He is in charge of the production of the company's management software products as a senior software engineer. Mitchel has a B.Sc. in Computer Sciences from Tel-Aviv Jaffa Academic College.

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