Continuity and Change in Detention Policy in Counterterrorism

Former DOS Legal Adviser  John Bellinger has a short opinion column out at the Council on Foreign Relations site (corrected link, I hope!), discussing continuity and change in US detention policy on counterterrorism.  John takes up a range of issues, from trials to repatriation and more, and concludes that there is mostly continuity with the second Bush term.  I agree.  I’ve suggested that the legal rationales underlying targeted killing and drone warfare have somewhat shifted, at least so far as outsiders unprivy to inside legal documents can tell, through a re-affirmation of international law of self-defense, and following the Adam Serwer post I mentioned earlier, I would add with respect to the issue of targeting an American citizen who has taken up an operational role, as well.  But overall, and in the detention questions particularly, I quite agree with John’s assessment.  The column is a good, short, robust statement of the issues.

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