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May 31, 2018

Report on military commissions sent to Capitol Hill

The ABA sent the House and Senate Armed Services Committees a new report on May 22 that resulted from a one-day workshop held in December 2017 where experts gathered to discuss the diverse legal issues facing the U.S. military commissions.

The nonpartisan report, “The U.S. Military Commissions: Looking Forward,” describes possible paths forward in the interests of U.S. national security, law, and justice.

The workshop, which was cosponsored by the ABA Standing Committee on Law and National Security and The George Washington University Law School, featured four sessions on the following topics: an overview of the military commissions at Guantanamo; legal questions related to existing detainees not charged before the commissions; legal issues that could arise if new detainees were brought to Guantanamo; and implications for the commissions posed by a new authorization to use military force.

In a letter accompanying the report, ABA Governmental Affairs Director Thomas M. Susman emphasized that the views expressed in the report do not represent policy of the ABA and others who participated in the workshop but are intended to help members of the Armed Services Committees as they “consider and make important policy decisions on the continued or future use of military commissions to try non-U.S. citizens for acts of international terrorism.”

Back to the May 2018 Washington Letter