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Vanderbilt University Law School

2009

Combatants

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Some Observations On The Future Of U.S. Military Commissions, Michael A. Newton Jan 2009

Some Observations On The Future Of U.S. Military Commissions, Michael A. Newton

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

The Obama Administration confronts many of the same practical and legal complexities that interagency experts debated in the fall of 2001. Military commissions remain a valid, if unwieldy, tool to be used at the discretion of a Commander-in-Chief. Refinement of the commission procedures has consumed thousands of legal hours within the Department of Defense, as well as a significant share of the Supreme Court docket. In practice, the military commissions have not been the charade of justice created by an overpowerful and unaccountable chief executive that critics predicted. In light of the permissive structure of U.S. statutes and the ...