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Monday, June 23, 2008

A Critique of "National Security Courts"

Although I've written before about my concerns with the idea of  "national security courts" for terrorism cases (including challenges to detention and trials for criminal offenses), we've already seen calls for such hybrid tribunals in the aftermath of the Supreme Court's decision 11 days ago in Boumediene, and I imagine those calls will only increase as the summer goes on.

With that in mind, I wanted to flag an important new statement out today from the Constitution Project's Liberty and Security Committee and its Coalition to Defend Checks and Balances, both of which are groups of fairly high-profile folks from all points along the political spectrum. The statement, titled A Critique of "National Security Courts," identifies some of the more serious flaws with such proposals, and ultimately takes a very skeptical view of their utility and their viability. [Full disclosure: I am the group's "Reporter."]

There's much more to be said about this debate, but given that almost all of the discussions out there thus far have been in favor, I thought I'd flag this important, dissenting view.

Posted by Steve Vladeck on June 23, 2008 at 11:20 AM in Constitutional thoughts, Current Affairs, Steve Vladeck | Permalink


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