Essay on POL 201 Final

Submitted By cmsmith24
Words: 1963
Pages: 8

Civil Liberties in the Context of the War on Terror
Shaun Davis
POL 201American National Government
Instructor Farrell Binder
February 16, 2015

Civil Liberties in the Context of the War on Terror On September 11, 2011, I was driving in my car headed home after a strenuous physical training session as a sergeant in the United States Army stationed in Fort Campbell Kentucky. I remember hearing on the radio that the United States was attacked by terrorist which would ultimately lead to war. I received a phone call from my Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge (NCOIC) to immediately return to post and report for safety briefing. When I arrived to base it was completely lock down. No one could leave the base and only one gate allowed for all soldiers to return. It took me over three hours to get back on to base and report for duty. I sat in the car, continued to listen to the radio and my heart sank deeper and deeper into my stomach. Could this really be? Could our nation be attacked on our own soil? Could so many lives be taken without rhyme or reason? How was I going to be able to explain this to my now three month old daughter who is waiting at home with her mother for me to return? I can remember everything about that day. How I felt, what I was doing and what I was anticipating for my life now as a United States soldier on the brink of war. There is no way, I thought in my mind, that the President of the United States of America would allow this to happen and not retaliate. Thus begins the war on terror. The war on terror has presented an arbitrary experiment for the United States whereas they interpret their law thus presenting an opportunity to take into custody detain what they would classify as an enemy combatant and deprive them of an appropriate due process. The right of Habeas corpus overrules man's interpretation, in which allows those accused federal and state court representation before judge, or jury. It asserts that accusers deemed innocent until proven guilty, accusers possessed the right to representation, appear in person, and charges brought forth. This note will seek to define habeas corpus and illustrate is evolvement throughout history dating back to its foundation in the United States Constitution. It will reveal instance of its suspension by the United States, its bearing throughout the war on terror, and the United States Supreme Court's interpretation. Seemingly, these laws were put in place to safeguard everyone, additionally to avoid illegal apprehensiveness, and guarantee that habeas corpus functions as intended by the United States Constitution. Since that day, when two planes crashed into the World Trade Centers in New York City and a third in a field in Pennsylvania consequently yielding an all-out attack on the United States and its allies, “the use of federal habeas corpus jurisdiction to review executive detentions of alleged enemy combatants has emerged as a topic of high concern to the Supreme Court, to the President, to Congress, to the press and the American public, and of course to constitutional scholars and federal courts teachers” (Fallon, 2010). From my stand point with limited knowledge, this note will date the historical evolution of habeas corpus from its institution in the United States Constitution with limited references of is use prior to. I now understand the importance of learning all my history not just parts that specifically pertain to myself, the role of government bodies and how the system works. Being in the military for over 21 years it was instilled in us to do as we are told as it was for our own safety and follow our chain of command. Vocabulary such as habeas corpus, jurisdiction, de facto, ex parte, sovereignty and clause were all foreign to me. The literature review trying to obtain the foundation to compose this note was challenging. It was important for me to understand these basic terms before I could understand the basis of what each