I recently received this alert from Dan Johnson; founder of PANDA (People Against the National Defense Authorization Act). Please read and share with as many people as possible! You may also download this document. Just right-click HERE and select “Save link as…”
Freedom fighters, Anti-NDAA groups, and alternative media:
This news needs to get out to all patriots ASAP, as the Senate is voting on the 2013 NDAA this week. There has been a lot of talk on recent Amendments to the 2013 NDAA. None of them will save our rights, and none of them are even a step in the right direction.
Please disseminate the attached legal reviews of all three changes that purportedly stop the NDAA, and why they do not and will not.
It’s crucial we get this information out so “We the People” are not tricked again.
Section 1033 (a) of the 2013 NDAA is Pure Smoke and Mirrors
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights…That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men”
-Declaration of Independence, 1776
There has been a lot of talk about Section 1033 of H.R. 4310, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2013. Some have been hailing it as bringing habeas corpus and other rights back to the U.S. This clause in the NDAA does nothing to protect our rights.
H.R. 4310, Section 1033(a) reads as follows:
“Nothing in the Authorization for Use of Military Force (Public Law 107-40; 50 U.S.C. 1541 note) 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 or to deny any Constitutional rights in a court ordained or established by or under Article III of the Constitution for any person who is lawfully in the United States when detained pursuant to the Authorization for Use of Military Force (Public Law 107-40; 50 U.S.C. 1541 note) and who is otherwise entitled to the availability of such writ or such rights.”
There are several problems with this clause, including but not limited to:
- This clause does not explain how a person came into military detention, and does not exempt them from such detention.
- This clause does not exempt any person in the United States, its territories, or protectorates from the targeting profile of the AUMF, or the expanded targeting profile of the 2012 NDAA.
- This clause fails to address the main problem with the 2012 NDAA, that the United States is a battlefield subject to the laws of war, some of which are inconsistent with the Constitution.
- There is no guarantee a person will get a trial in an Article III Court.
- There is no guarantee of a trial at all.
Let’s break it down:
“Nothing in the AUMF or the 2012 NDAA shall be construed to deny the availability of the writ of habeas corpus or to deny any Constitutional rights in a court ordained or established by or under Article III of the Constitution for any person who is lawfully in the United States when detained pursuant to the AUMF and who is otherwise entitled to the availability of such writ or such rights,”
We emphasized certain parts of this language for a reason. Of particular note are the phrases “in a court ordained or established by or under Article III”, and “when detained.”
Section 1033(a)’s protections only apply IF a person is taken to an Article III Court. This does not guarantee that a person WILL go to an Article III Court. Anyone could be indefinitely detained and never tried at all, or be indefinitely detained and then taken to a Military commission/tribunal….and this is where it gets interesting.
If you are a covered person under the 2012 NDAA, you could be detained indefinitely without a trial “pending disposition under the law of war.” (See 2012 NDAA, Section 1021(a).)
Section 1033(a) does not address how a person came into detention in the first place. There is nothing in this section legally protecting a person from being indefinitely detained. In fact, this Section acknowledges that a person can be detained:
“any person who is lawfully in the United States when detained pursuant to the AUMF”
This clause is not addressing a fundamental problem of the 2012 NDAA, and does nothing to keep the military, Interpol, or the Secret Service from bursting in anyone’s house and detaining them in a military brig.
Next, this clause does not exempt a person from the expanded targeting profile of the 2012 NDAA. Section 1021(b)(2) lays out the requirements for someone and their family to become a “covered person.” It states:
(2) A person who was a part of or substantially supported al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners, including any person who has committed a belligerent act or has directly supported such hostilities in aid of such enemy forces.
Federal Judge Katherine Forrest pressed the government lawyers for details on what constitutes “associated forces, “substantial support”, or “direct support,” and found out they were unable to answer. That those terms could be interpreted broadly to mean whatever the government wanted them to mean, and therefore anyone could be a covered person. In her first injunction, she wrote:
“The Government was unable to define precisely what ”direct” or “substantial” “support” means. . . .Thus, an individual could run the risk of substantially supporting or directly supporting an associated force without even being aware that he or she was doing so.”
Besides acknowledging the government’s right to detain anyone and failing to exempt them from the 2012 NDAA’s targeting profile, Section 1033(a) does not address the main issue with the 2012 NDAA. The United States of America is now a battlefield, under the commander-in-chief, the law of war, and the jurisdiction of Military commissions, at their discretion.
Section 1021(a)(1) of the 2012 NDAA lays it out succinctly:
“IN GENERAL.—Congress affirms that the authority of the President to use all necessary and appropriate force pursuant to the Authorization for Use of Military Force [AUMF] (Public Law 107–40; 50 U.S.C. 1541 note) includes the authority for the Armed Forces of the United States to detain covered persons …pending disposition under the law of war.” (emphasis added)
If one applies the laws of war to any territory, it is now a battlefield. In fact, Sen. Lindsey Graham said the “The whole world is a battlefield, including the homeland.” on the floor of the U.S. House of representatives during debate on the 2012 NDAA. Section 1033(a) of the 2013 NDAA does nothing to address that crucial issue.
Because the U.S. is a battlefield and therefore subject to the laws of war, anyone could be tried in a Military commission/tribunal. 10 USC 818 – Art. 8. Jurisdiction of general courts-martial states:
“General courts-martial also have jurisdiction to try any person who by the law of war is subject to trial by a military tribunal and may adjudge any punishment permitted by the law of war.” (emphasis added)
The 2009 Military Commissions Act gave Military commissions/tribunals (also known as courts-martial) the statutory authority to choose whether or not they had jurisdiction over a certain area. In layman’s terms, that means a Military commission (an Article I Court) can decide themselves whether or not they will take “jurisdiction” over cases involving AUMF/NDAA “covered persons,” including those “captured or arrested” on U.S. soil, despite the fact that the internationally-recognized “laws of war” require most “covered persons” be tried in the civilian court system, which in the United States is an Article III Court.
According to the April, 2010 Congressional Research Service (CRS) report, The Military Commissions Act of 2009: Overview and Legal Issues, “A military commission has jurisdiction over persons subject to …the law of war. Military commissions are expressly authorized to determine their own jurisdiction.” (emphasis added)
Referencing laws about the jurisdiction of Military commissions and referring to the fact that a person could be tried in one would be a moot point if these Military commissions were Article III Courts. However, Section 1033(a) of the 2013 NDAA is purely smoke and mirrors, because Military commissions are NOT Article III Courts.
Military tribunals are authorized in the enumerated powers of the federal government. The U.S. Constitution, Article I, Section 8, Clause 9 states that Congress shall have the power “To constitute Tribunals inferior to the supreme Court.”
Section 1033(a) only guarantees a person his or her Constitutional rights “in a court ordained or established by or under Article III of the Constitution.” This clause does not protect the rights of a person tried in a military tribunal.
This Section also fails to guarantee that any person detained will get a trial. It only states that nothing in the 2013 NDAA “shall be construed to deny the availability of the writ of habeas corpus or to deny any Constitutional rights in a court ordained or established by or under Article III of the Constitution.”
This clause never, explicitly or implicitly, guarantees a trial for any person detained under the 2012 NDAA. By refusing to address this issue, the original language in Section 1021(c)(1) remains unaffected…and that Section specifically states a person detained under the NDAA may not get a trial:
“Detention under the law of war without trial until the end of the hostilities authorized by the Authorization for Use of Military Force.”
Section 1033(a) of the 2013 NDAA does nothing to guarantee anyone a trial, and does not protect their rights until they are on trial in an Article III Court.
Section 1033(a) does absolutely nothing to protect our inalienable, God-given Rights. It recognizes the un-Constitutional practice of indefinite detainment as legitimate, and does not exempt any person from the targeting profile outlined in the 2012 NDAA. Since the U.S. is legally considered a battlefield subject to the laws of war, and Military commissions have jurisdiction over battlefields and cases under the laws of war, this Section can’t secure the rights of persons who make it to Article III courts since they were already secured by the Constitution and Bill of Rights, but are eliminated by the fact that any detained person can be tried in a Military commission. This Section of Orwellian doublespeak does not even guarantee a detained person their right to a trial, much less a “speedy and public trial” as required by the 6th Amendment. Therefore, any person detained under the 2012 NDAA is subject to “detention without trial until the end of hostilities.”
Finally, this Section does not address the fundamental concept of the 2012 NDAA; that the United States is now a battlefield, subject to the laws of war, Constitutional Rights optional. Section 1033(a) is just politics as usual on Capitol Hill. Trick the American people, strip us of our rights, and tell us to go back to sleep.
Do your own research, look at the language. Do not accept false fixes to serious problems, and do not support language that does not defend or restore our inalienable rights. Watch out for Smoke and Mirrors.
Why do the people we trust to defend our rights…try so hard to destroy them?
Founder, People Against the NDAA