Los Angeles Times

Solicitor general nominee says ‘enemy combatants’ can be held without trial
Los Angeles Times

Harvard Law Dean Elena Kagan, President Obama’s choice to represent his administration before the Supreme Court, told a key Republican senator Tuesday that she believed the government could hold suspected terrorists without trial as war prisoners.

She echoed comments by Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. during his confirmation hearing last month. Both agreed that the United States was at war with Al Qaeda and suggested the law of war allows the government to capture and hold alleged terrorists without charges.

Civil liberties advocates, including the American Civil Liberties Union and Human Rights First, have urged the Obama administration to follow the U.S. rules of criminal justice in such cases. Under these rules, civilians who are alleged to conspire with terrorists must be charged with a crime and given a trial.