2 posts tagged indefinite detention
President Barack Obama’s signing of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) on December 31 shocked many people who hoped that Obama, a former constitutional law professor, would reverse the abuses routinely committed by the administration of George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.
But while the NDAA—with its provisions that authorize the military, on the say-so of the president, to indefinitely detain U.S. citizens—is ominous, it certainly isn’t Obama’s first assault on civil liberties. After spending his presidential campaign in 2008 criticizing the Bush administration for providing a “legal” justification for torture, Obama has refused to take action against Bush-era officials for violating international law, and he has made sure the U.S. government’s repressive apparatus remains in place, at home and in countries around the world.
Abdul Malik Mujahid is a leader of Muslim Peace Coalition, an organization formed in 2011 to challenge Islamophobia. He spoke with Eric Ruder about the anxiety that the NDAA has caused in the Muslim American community—and what people are doing to stand up for their rights.
Nearly 40 People Arrested Outside of Obama’s White House Protesting Guantanamo, Indefinite Detention
Thirty-seven members of Witness Against Torture, a grassroots organization calling for the closure of the US detention facility in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, were arrested in front of the White House around three o’clock yesterday afternoon. Dressed in the iconic Guantanamo orange jumpsuits and black hoods and accompanied by a cage representing indefinite detention, the activists were warned to clear the sidewalk by National Park Police or risk arrest. After occupying the sidewalk for more than three hours, they were arrested one by one.
“We came to the White House because just eleven days ago, President Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act. It is dead wrong,” says Leah Grady Sayvetz, an activist and college student form Ithaca, New York arrested this afternoon. “The NDAA makes Guantanamo near-permanent and expands detention powers just when this terrible and immoral detention apparatus should be being dismantled.”
The activists held signs that said: “NDAA is Guantanamo Forever,” NDAA is Guantanamo Come Home,” “Shut Down Guantanamo,” “Shut Down Bagram,” “Release Those Unjustly Bound” and pulled a full-size cage up on the side walk.