Did Scalia Prejudge Guantanamo Case?
Posted on Mar 27, 2006
Newsweek surfaces unpublicized comments by the Supreme Court justice in which he scoffs at the idea of extending full legal rights to Guantanamo detainees. Problem is: He has yet to judge that case.
April 3, 2006 issue - The Supreme Court this week will hear arguments in a big case: whether to allow the Bush administration to try Guantnamo detainees in special military tribunals with limited rights for the accused. But Justice Antonin Scalia has already spoken his mind about some of the issues in the matter. During an unpublicized March 8 talk at the University of Freiburg in Switzerland, Scalia dismissed the idea that the detainees have rights under the U.S. Constitution or international conventions, adding he was “astounded” at the “hypocritical” reaction in Europe to Gitmo. “War is war, and it has never been the case that when you captured a combatant you have to give them a jury trial in your civil courts,” he says on a tape of the talk reviewed by NEWSWEEK. “Give me a break.”
Critics say that U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia (shown here during a reenactment of a landmark labor law case) should recuse himself from a case involving the rights of U.S.-held detainees in light of his skeptical public comments on the issue.