New Plan for Terror Suspects

Download Audio

It was full pomp and circumstance at the White House yesterday, as President Bush unveiled the fact of secret CIA prisons, announced 14 certifiable terrorist suspects are now at Guantanamo, and put the full weight of his office on Congress to approve detainee trials by military tribunal.

Trouble is, the President is essentially asking again for what the Supreme Court has just ruled against, as offending the Geneva Conventions and the US Constitution.

It may be good politics, or it may not. It may be good policy, or it may not. But the president is moving boldly to put the war on terror front and center again, his way.

We weigh justice, effectiveness, and Bush's war.

Quotes from the Show:

"The President is asking [Congress] for the same commission but with a new cover sheet." Lt Commander Charles Swift

"The President is not asking [Congress] for the same thing. ... [Bush's request] is a very responsible proposal for a fair due process [for the detainees]." Douglas Kmiec

"What we have not done in this country is not look at the motives of Al Qaeda. ... Instead of looking at it as a war on terror, we need to look at it as a law enforcement effort." Ian Lustick

"The way to reduce terrorism is to turn down the heat. ... Instead, we are playing into the hands of the enemy." Ian Lustick


Carol Williams, correspondent for The Los Angeles Times

Lt Commander Charles Swift, who represents Guantanamo detainee Salim Ahmed Hamdan.

Douglas Kmiec, professor of constitutional law at Pepperdine Law School.

Ian Lustick, professor of political science at the University of Pennsylvania and author of "Trapped in the War on Terror."

This program aired on September 7, 2006.


More from On Point

Listen Live