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Civil Liberties, Habeas Corpus, and the War on Terror - Essay Example

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Habeas corpus was derived from the English common law and was first enshrined in the Magna Carta of 1215 (The Rutherford Institute, 2015)…
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Civil Liberties, Habeas Corpus, and the War on Terror
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Civil Liberties, Habeas Corpus, and the War on Terror

Download file to see previous pages... Jefferson intimated that Americas commitment to democratic tendencies was based on the liberty and protection of an individual under habeas corpus (Gregory, 2013).
Habeas corpus is established in the United States constitution in article (1), section (9) and clause (2). The constitution under this article enforces the application of habeas corpus unless there is rebellious tendency or when the scenario poses a threat to the safety of the citizenry. There are only two occasions in history when habeas corpus was suspended. President Abraham Lincoln suspended habeas corpus in 1861 due to the militia conduct and riots in Maryland (The Rutherford Institute, 2015). Secondly, habeas corpus was suspended during the reconstruction due to civil rights violations.
The war on terrorism has complicated the status of habeas corpus in the United States (Hafetz, 2011). During the Inauguration of president Obama, there was a commitment to close the Guantanamo bay and uphold the rights and freedoms of the prisoners and detainees. However, such promises and commitments have not bore any fruit. Guantanamo bay has transformed over time and currently it is an alternative detention camp that puts a caveat on prisoners access to criminal justice system in the US.
Hafetz (2011) intimates that terrorist suspects in are today detained indefinitely at the Guantanamo bay and the military commissions continues to play a significant role in dealing with the prisoners. Individuals who are thought to be a threat to the US are detained without trial. Prisoners in the modern dispensation are being detained without trial and the federal government has to a greater extent limited the authority of the magistrates to issue judgments that are contrary to their wish (Hafetz, 2011). The magistrates are barred from releasing a prisoner or detainee under any circumstances. The war on terrorism has greatly eroded the tenets of habeas corpus. The counter terrorism policy has curtailed ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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