In Dicta

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Detentions of enemy combatants

Eugene Volokh has this take which is sure to be controversial.


"U.S. detentions of enemy combatants, some people say, are troublesome because they are potentially of indefinite duration. America held enemy prisoners during World War II and earlier wars, but at least there the wars were over in several years; the war on terror could go on indefinitely. Isn't that unfair to the detainees? Try them or let them go, people say. Note that this argument is independent of the conditions of confinement, or of the argument that some of the detainees may have been seized by mistake; people say this even about prisoners who are definitely al-Qaeda, Taliban, or Iraqi insurgents.

This argument, I think, is a mistake. Let me briefly explain why."


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