Senators John McCain and Joe Lieberman have introduced a 12-page bill that rivals the PATRIOT act and Military Commissions Act as the most short-sighted and therefore frightening piece of legislation introduced by a member of Congress. Essentially, it says that anyone anywhere in the world can be arrested as an "enemy belligerent", held without trial by the military for an indefinite period of time all because they "support" acts of terrorism or organizations who commit acts of terrorism against the US or its allies.
Additionally, the law specifically forbids these detained "enemy belligerents" from being read their Miranda rights or otherwise being informed of any rights they may have. They don't even have to prove that you have supported terrorists, only to suspect it. (So much for innocent until proven guilty!) And the president gets to determine who is and who is not a terrorist.
Here are the actual House and Senate bills from The Library of Congress:
H.R.4892 : To provide for the interrogation and detention of enemy belligerents who commit hostile acts against the United States, to establish certain limitations on the prosecution of such belligerents for such acts, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep McKeon, Howard P. "Buck" [CA-25] (introduced 3/19/2010) Cosponsors (None)
Committees: House Intelligence (Permanent Select); House Armed Services; House Judiciary
Latest Major Action: 3/19/2010 Referred to House committee. Status: Referred to the Committee on Intelligence (Permanent Select), and in addition to the Committees on Armed Services, and the Judiciary, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned.
S.3081 : A bill to provide for the interrogation and detention of enemy belligerents who commit hostile acts against the United States, to establish certain limitations on the prosecution of such belligerents for such acts, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Sen McCain, John [AZ] (introduced 3/4/2010) Cosponsors (9)
Committees: Senate Judiciary
Latest Major Action: 3/4/2010 Referred to Senate committee. Status: Read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.
The Most Important Sentence In McCain/Lieberman's Nightmare Detention Bill: "An individual, including a citizen of the United States ... may be detained without criminal charges and without trial"
Full text (pdf)http://assets.theatlantic.com/...
You are walking out of the hardware store, where you've just bought a fire extinguisher for your home. On the way to your car, you have to pass a police car, with the officer sitting in it.
You trip, lose your hold on the fire extinguisher, and it falls through his open window and lands in his lap. He jumps out of the car, arrests you, calls his superiors and tells them you're a terrorist with a bomb. You are whisked off into military detention. You don't have Miranda rights. No phone call. No lawyer. The can keep you as long as they want to.
You're now an "enemy belligerent." I hope you said good-bye to your family because they might not see you again for years, and no one has to even tell them where you are.
That's what this bill allows, and that's what so dangerous about it.