Friday, July 25, 2008

Extraordinary Rendition: The Price of Secrecy

From the American University Law Review.

Sweeping interpretations of presidential power and government secrecy after 9/11 bore fruit in the area of “extraordinary rendition.” Under this doctrine, the President claims to possess inherent authority to seize individuals and transfer them to other countries for interrogation and torture. In the past, Attorneys General and other legal commentators understood that: (1) Presidents needed congressional authority for these transfers and (2) the purpose was to bring the person to trial. Until recently, the Justice Department held that the President could not order someone extradited or rendered without authority granted by a treaty or statute.

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