Thursday, June 5, 2008

Guantanamo Bay

At Guantánamo......Habeas corpus was eliminated. ...Defendants will not be able to see secret evidence against them. ...Hearsay evidence and confessions coerced as a result of torture will be used to convict. This is not American justice.

Dear ACLU Supporter,There is no justice at Guantánamo Bay.

What I witnessed today in a Guantánamo courtroom made that clearer than ever.
At their arraignment before a military commission on terrorism-related charges, detainees accused of participating in the 9/11 attacks refused legal representation by military and civilian defense attorneys.

Every day, the Bush Administration’s un-American system of injustice continues to make a mockery of due process and the rule of law.
It’s time to bring it to an end.
Sign our ACLU Stand Up for Justice petition calling on America's leaders to shut down Guantánamo Bay and end the military commission system of injustice.

At Guantánamo, convictions can be based on evidence derived from torture. Hearsay and secret evidence are permitted. And the proceedings are subject to unlawful political influence.
Indeed, after years without a single trial completed, prosecutions are now being rushed through to sway public opinion before the November elections.
This isn’t justice. And it hardly comes as any surprise that after being held in solitary confinement for five years and subjected to torture, these detainees would reject the legal system and offers to represent them. Without constitutional guarantees in place, any verdict rendered by these proceedings will be regarded as illegitimate by the American people and in the eyes of the world.
Help close Guantánamo. Sign the petition, and stand up for the rule of law.
The need to get these prosecutions right cannot be overstated, both because of the need to achieve lasting and meaningful justice for what was done to us on September 11, 2001 and because how we achieve that justice will speak volumes about who we are as a nation.
Unfortunately, the Guantánamo military commissions are so fundamentally flawed that they fail miserably by both measures.
The ACLU is committed to opposing the injustice of these proceedings with every means at our disposal. ACLU representatives have attended every military commission proceeding since the system's inception in 2004 -- and we have protested the use of torture and hearsay and coerced evidence.
We have and will continue to offer legal representation to detainees at Guantánamo. Just as important, we will keep challenging the very existence and procedures of the Guantánamo military commissions themselves. And we need you to stand with us.
Sign the petition, and stand up for the rule of law.
Let's work together to apply the principles, the passion and the strength of the ACLU to prove to the world -- and to ourselves -- that, even when dealing with those accused of committing egregious acts of terror, America remains a nation of laws.
Thanks for standing with us as we take direct, powerful, and persuasive action to end the Bush system of injustice.

Keep working for freedom and justice,
Anthony D. RomeroExecutive DirectorACLU

© ACLU, 125 Broad Street, 18th Floor New York, NY 10004

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