28 August 2007

Israel Better Than U.S. on Human Rights

Before the current Bush Administration, few people would have claimed that Israel was better in the human rights department than the United States, particularly when it comes to judicial protection of individual rights. But, the President's "enemy combatant" policy changed all that. An amicus brief from Israeli military experts in the Boumediene case pending before the U.S. Supreme Court lays out the inferiority of the President's policies at protecting human rights, when compared to the Israeli standard, point by point. (More briefs can be found here).

Of course, nobody is arguing that Israeli law is in any way precedential in U.S. Courts. Instead, the point of the brief is to counter the parade of horribles trotted out by the Bush Administration that claims that the courts can't play a meaningful role in supervising the military detention of alleged combatants in the face of a terrorist onslaught, and that torture is necessary. The brief argues that significant, meaningful judicial review of military detentions is feasible and even worthwhile, and that legalized torture is not necessary to fight terrorism.

Hat Tip to the SCOTUS Blog.

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