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Habeas Corpus after 9/11Confronting America's New Global Detention System$
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Jonathan Hafetz

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780814737033

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814737033.001.0001

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Continuity and Change

Continuity and Change

The Detention Policy of a New Administration

(p.238) 13 Continuity and Change
Habeas Corpus after 9/11

Jonathan Hafetz

NYU Press

This chapter examines America's national security policy during President Barack Obama's first year in office. It considers Obama's initial moves, such as banning torture and ordering the closure of the Guantánamo detention facility, along with his subsequent adoption of military commissions and indefinite detention. Notwithstanding some positive steps, the chapter argues that the Obama administration has largely embraced continuity instead of implementing reforms and that key components of the post-9/11 detention system might become permanent features of the country's legal fabric and political discourse. Nevertheless, it suggests that habeas corpus remains an important safeguard of individual liberty against illegal government action and the single most important check against arbitrary and illegal detention, torture, and other abuses.

Keywords:   national security policy, Barack Obama, detention, torture, military commissions, habeas corpus, illegal detention

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