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ISBN:0300189206
Author: Jess Bravin
ISBN13: 978-0300189209
Title: The Terror Courts: Rough Justice at Guantanamo Bay
Format: lrf txt doc lit
ePUB size: 1298 kb
FB2 size: 1418 kb
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Language: English
Category: Humanities
Publisher: Yale University Press; 37079th edition (February 19, 2013)
Pages: 448

The Terror Courts: Rough Justice at Guantanamo Bay by Jess Bravin



In The Terror Courts, Jess Bravin reveals the ills of the parallel justice system at Guantanamo. While the book provides a roster of villains - including what could only be called a gleeful evisceration of former chief prosecutor Robert Swann - there are heroes, too: men in uniform who were deeply uncomfortable about the direction the military commissions were taking. One of those people was Marine Lt. Col. Stuart Couch, who appears to have been a key source for the book. He worked on the 1998 Aviano case, in which a Marine pilot, about to end his tour, flew below regulation altitude and clipped a ski gondola in the Italian Alps, killing all 20 Europeans on board.

Jess Bravin, Supreme Court correspondent for the Wall Street Journal, has covered the Guantanamo military commissions since 2001. Bravin in his book demonstrates what happens when a government administration tries to justify unlawful means with laws that cannot support unjust means. Bush and Company and the current Obama administration have failed to bring justice to the families of 9/11 and the United States. 6 people found this helpful.

Jess Bravin, the Wall Street Journal’s Supreme Court correspondent, was there within days of the prison’s opening, and has continued ever since to cover the . effort to create a parallel justice system for enemy aliens. A maze of legal, political, and moral issues has stood in the way of justice-issues often raised by military prosecutors who found themselves torn between duty to the chain of command and their commitment to fundamental American values. While much has been written about Guantanamo and brutal detention practices following 9/11, Bravin is the first to go inside the Pentagon’s.

It tells the story of how The Bush administration envisioned military courts being a way of dispensing loose justice, but then also how highly ethical military lawyers worked to reject evidence based on torture. It's a great read, though disappointing how its common sense lessons don't penetrate more into the public consciousness.

His book, The Terror Courts: Rough Justice at Guantanamo Bay, has just been published. JESS BRAVIN: Well, that’s right, because the commissions project, it was not something that arose because the Justice Department or the Defense Department or the CIA said, Gosh, we don’t know how we’re going to deal with, you know, this terrorist organization. We have-our justice system is incapable of handling it.

Officials called it "rough justice. Guantanamo would be al Qaeda's Nuremberg, the end of the line for perpetrators of monstrous crimes. Yet Guantanamo held no Mullah Omar, no Ayman al-Zawahiri, no Osama bin Laden. Al Qaeda's high command somehow had evaded the campaign the Pentagon called Operation Enduring Freedom. A handful of real al Qaeda commanders would fall into American hands - Abdelrahim al-Nashiri, Ramzi Binalshibh, and the terrorist entrepreneur who conceived the 9/11 attacks, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. Bin Laden had gotten away. But they had his driver. Excerpted from The Terror Courts: Rough Justice at Guantanamo Bay by Jess Bravin, to be published in February 2012 by Yale University Press.

In The Terror Courts: Rough Justice at Guantánamo Bay, Mr. Bravin sets out to chronicle what he portrays as the legal equivalent of a war of choice, the from-scratch alternative justice system President George W. Bush created by fiat in November 2001 to deal with captured Qaeda suspects.

’ Guantanamo would be al Qaeda’s Nuremberg, the end of the line for perpetrators of monstrous crimes. Al Qaeda’s high command somehow had evaded the campaign the Pentagon called Operation Enduring Freedom. A handful of real al Qaeda commanders would fall into American hands-Abdelrahim al-Nashiri, Ramzi Binalshibh, and the terrorist entrepreneur who conceived the 9/11 attacks, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.

The Terror Courts: Rough Justice at Guantanamo Bay, by Jess Bravin. A Force: The Origins of British Deception During the Second World War, by Whitney T. Bendeck. The CIA preferred using the fed-eral prosecutors and judges in the Southern District of New York since they were experienced in handling the biggest terrorism cases while protecting classi-fied information without a single leak. 45) For rea-sons of their own, the State and Justice Departments were also not pleased with the decision.

Soon after the September 11 attacks in 2001, the United States captured hundreds of suspected al-Qaeda terrorists in Afghanistan and around the world. By the following January the first of these prisoners arrived at the U.S. military’s prison camp in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, where they were subject to President George W. Bush’s executive order authorizing their trial by military commissions. Jess Bravin, the Wall Street Journal’s Supreme Court correspondent, was there within days of the prison’s opening, and has continued ever since to cover the U.S. effort to create a parallel justice system for enemy aliens. A maze of legal, political, and moral issues has stood in the way of justice—issues often raised by military prosecutors who found themselves torn between duty to the chain of command and their commitment to fundamental American values.

While much has been written about Guantanamo and brutal detention practices following 9/11, Bravin is the first to go inside the Pentagon’s prosecution team to expose the real-world legal consequences of those policies. Bravin describes cases undermined by inadmissible evidence obtained through torture, clashes between military lawyers and administration appointees, and political interference in criminal prosecutions that would be shocking within the traditional civilian and military justice systems. With the Obama administration planning to try the alleged 9/11 conspirators at Guantanamo—and vindicate the legal experiment the Bush administration could barely get off the ground—The Terror Courts could not be more timely.

Reviews: 7
Kalv
This is an engrossing tale of the military commissions that have been functioning since the Bush administration through the present. It looks at politics, the law and the human stories of many of the people involved, including the detainees. I'd call it first rate journalism, although there are some threads that aren't tied up at the end, and the writing style is readable but not excellent. This is something American citizens need to read and understand about their government. The degree to which this obviously unconstitutional system was colored by political concerns and by the fear the public would learn about Bush era torturing of prisoners is frankly completely horrifying. I recommend it highly.
Rleyistr
This book gives me huge appreciation for the people of integrity that are not letting the machine roll over them, but standing up for the principles of fair play, taking personal risks by refusing to go along with the political machine. Fascinating looks at the tortured logic that tries to pass off torture as merely "enhanced interrogation." Appalling that the advocates of "rough justice" just wouldn't let themselves see the ultimately self-defeating consequences. Well worth the read if only for the thought it provokes...
TheMoonix
Bravin in his book demonstrates what happens when a government administration tries to justify unlawful means with laws that cannot support unjust means. Bush and Company and the current Obama administration have failed to bring justice to the families of 9/11 and the United States. There is no substitute for the rule of law. Bravin through his wonderful research has shown that not getting the administration of justice correctly the first time that its is impossible to getting it right no
Malhala
Book was is unbeleivable condition for what I paid. Great deal!
Kirizius
The book is an eye opener. There is an error about Cmd Lang. He was not passed over for promotion. He was not up for promotion at that time. He chose to retire for personal reasons. However the book is extremely well-researched, provides outstanding coverage of the situation and is worth reading, if one wants to know about the prisoners at Gitmo.
Ka
Bravin details the atrocities of an American policy on detention and an insiders look about the heroes that stood up to the administrations and eventually help change things for the better.
Tisicai
Well written and informative. Changed my mind on the death penalty--abolish it. We should strive to put our society above those that we punish with death. If we kill, what separates us from the killers?
I'm a bit conflicted with this book. It is a good writeup of what went on in the form of legal machinations in attempting to create an extra-legal Tribunal System. The fact that the Tribunal System basically collapsed due to the failed attempt to isolate it from normal judicial review is quite telling. That and the fact that the one guilty plea and one conviction were both ultimately wiped out by the US Court of Appeals due to the fact that they were the result of a series of Ex Post Facto laws brands the Tribunal System as an abject and total failure! OOPS!

Note: This is a pretty dry book and isn't the easiest read. That said, it's well worth the effort.

Disclaimer: This review is from the hardcover version as checked out through the Inter-Library Loan program at my local library.