Saturday, September 23, 2006

Detainee Deal Comes With Contradictions - New York Times

Detainee Deal Comes With Contradictions - New York Times: "The compromise reached on Thursday between Congressional Republicans and the White House on the interrogations and trials of terrorism suspects is, legal experts said yesterday, a series of interlocking paradoxes.

It would impose new legal standards that it forbids the courts to enforce.

It would guarantee terrorist masterminds charged with war crimes an array of procedural protections. But it would bar hundreds of minor figures and people who say they are innocent bystanders from access to the courts to challenge their potentially lifelong detentions.

And while there is substantial disagreement about just which harsh interrogation techniques the compromise would prohibit, there is no dispute that it would allow military prosecutors to use statements that had been obtained under harsh techniques that are now banned.

The complex, technical and often ambiguous language in the 94-page measure was a subject of debate, posturing and, perhaps, some wishful thinking yesterday. Each side in the hard-fought negotiations — the White House and the three opposing Republican senators — declared victory.

And human rights groups simultaneously insisted that the new bill should be read to forbid various tough antiterrorism tactics and cautioned that the Bush administration had been given too much power to make the rules."


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