June 16, 2008 – This week’s update contains important news about a new Supreme Court ruling, about a special VCS report, and about our landmark lawsuit against VA.
First, VCS applauds our Supreme Court for restoring Habeas Corpus last week. On Thursday, the Court decided that President George W. Bush’s dungeon at Guantanamo Bay was illegal and that the prisoners of war held there for six long, brutal years without legal rights do possess basic human rights.
While this is an critical court victory in favor of the rule of law, VCS hopes our courts will also end President Bush’s domestic spying and torture policies, two of the Administration’s other unconscionable acts against the rule of law.
VCS believes in the words of Thomas Paine who wrote in 1776 that “Law is King.” No single person should be able to hold hundreds and possibly thousands of people indefinitely without access to our courts. Please keep the flame of Paine alive with a generous contribution to VCS so we can protect and defend our Constitution.
Conservative Justice Kennedy’s swing vote: The bold ruling of the Supreme Court re-establishing the right to Habeas Corpus sends a loud and strong message to the Bush Administration that their days of ignoring our Constitution are over. “The laws and Constitution are designed to survive, and remain in force, in extraordinary times,” Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote for the court.
New York Times analysis: “It is extraordinary that during the Bush administration’s seven years…the court has been prompted to push back four times. Last week’s decision in Boumediene v. Bush, in which the court ruled that prisoners at Guantánamo Bay have a right to challenge their detentions in the federal courts, marks only the most recent rebuke.”
Washington Post supports decision: “It shouldn’t be necessary for the Supreme Court to tell the president that he can’t have people taken into custody, spirited to a remote prison camp and held indefinitely, with no legal right to argue that they’ve been unjustly imprisoned.”
In keeping with his positions in favor of torture and indefinite imprisonment without trial, Senator John McCain said the Supreme Court ruling was “one of the worst decisions in the history of this country,” reports Financial Times.
New VCS Special Report: Meanwhile, our military continues suffering under the current Administration. Later this week Veterans for Common Sense plans to release a detailed report describing how the Administration broke our military. In just one example of many , a general states that 72% of eligible recruits fail to meet minimum standards.
Lawsuit Verdict Soon: U.S. District Court Judge Samuel Conti said in court he expects to issue a ruling “soon” in our landmark lawsuit against VA. Please visit our website daily for updates on this historic lawsuit.
Veterans for Common Sense stands up for our veterans and our Civil Liberties, and we do that with the help of our members, who are committed to these American values. Please, set up a sustaining gift today to help Veterans for Common Sense continue working hard for America and her veterans.