While the headlines are dominated by the divorce of Kobe Bryant, the fake death of Jon bon Jovi, and of course the Kardashians; 95% of Americans are unaware of a bill that is so unconstitutional that it will allow the government to decide who gets an old fashioned trial (along with right to attorney and right against self-incrimination) and who gets detained without due process and put into a FEMA camp. On 15 December 2015, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2012 has been passed by both houses of Congress separately, and a final version was approved by the Senate by a vote of 93 to 7.
The dangerous bill will allow the military to detain American citizens on American soil without due process. For the first time in our history, if this Act is not vetoed, American citizens may not be guaranteed their Article III right to trial. President Barack Obama plans on signing the bill into law tomorrow, according to reports coming from the White House. The Act legislatively codifies the President’s authority to indefinitely detain terrorism suspects, including American citizens, without trial as defined in Title X, Subtitle D, SEC 1031(a-e) of the bill.
Congressman and Republican presidential candidate, Ron Paul, said, “We have now institutionalized and codified martial law.” Mitt Romney was caught clueless at a New Hampshire Town Hall meeting and Newt Gingrich remains zipped on whether or not he supports this travesty to civil liberties of American citizens. The ACLU called it “an historic threat to American citizens,” and the bill was also criticized by the Directors of the FBI, the CIA, the National Intelligence Director and the U.S. Defense Secretary. Senator Lindsey Graham declared that suspected citizens open themselves up “to imprisonment and death. And when they say, ‘I want my lawyer,’ you tell them: ‘Shut up. You don’t get a lawyer.’”
Just to be clear, this is not a republican vs. Democrat issue, as both parties almost unanimously passed this bill. Apparently, after all the gridlock in Congress, they can agree on at least one thing: taking more liberties away from American citizens. I don’t want to be put into a FEMA camp, so I will say that my last statement was just an attempt at being facetious.
Of course, the politicians will say we are just talking about a few cases. But in fact the sky’s probably the limit given the current legal ambiguity in the Patriot Act expansion of “material support for terrorism” to now include humanitarian aid and even mere advocacy speech without any need to prove an accused person intended to support any kind of terrorist violence. The Department of Justice has been currently using this ambiguity for over a year to investigate twenty three American citizens who are anti-war activists in Chicago and Minneapolis. Additionally, the "war on terror" will undoubtedly expand even more when it is de-linked from 9-11 -- see “The War on Terrorism Congress Never Declared -- But Soon Might” by Stephen I. Vladeck, a law professor, expert on these issues and associate dean for scholarship at American University Washington College of Law:
...an individual may be detained for providing “direct support” (which, in the government's view, may be nothing more than minor financial or logistical assistance) in aid of “associated forces” that are “engaged in hostilities against...coalition partners.” Thus, the NDAA effectively authorizes the military detention of any individual who provides such assistance anywhere in the world to any group engaged in hostilities against any of our coalition partners, whether or not the United States is in any way involved in (or even affected by) that particular conflict.
Given this expansion of the 2001 Authorization to Use Military Force contained in the 2012 NDAA to encompass undefined “associated forces,” we could witness the US government targeting a large range of political dissidents, human rights activists, humanitarians, and maybe even “occupiers.”
One thing is for sure, though: the political, military industrial, corporate class in Washington DC continues to re-make our constitutional republic into a powerful, unaccountable Military Empire, which could now officially turn U.S. “emergency war powers” into those that trump the Constitution. After years of the rants from conspiracy theorists, it appears that they were correct: Martial Law is coming to our country.