What America Can Learn from Israel's Experience

(McClatchy) Amos N. Guiora - From its founding in 1948 to the present day, Israel has been at war with one or more nations, has faced mortal threats to its national survival, and has been the target of countless acts of terrorism against its civilian population, with devastating losses of life. Even in the midst of hostilities and warfare, under Israeli law, all detainees, regardless of nationality or the circumstances or location of their seizure, have a right of access to counsel and to independent courts empowered to review the basis for their detention and, when warranted, to order their release. This is true even when judicial review takes place amid continuing terrorist attacks or large-scale Israeli military operations. I was - and remain - convinced that Israel's robust judicial review is both necessary to maintain the rule of law and makes for effective counterterrorism policy. As a former military commander, I know that a robust and independent court review process helps to ensure that we are properly detaining the right people, and not those wrongly picked up in sweeps, or who are otherwise innocent. IDF Lt.-Col. (ret.) Amos N. Guiora, a former commander of the IDF School of Military Law, is a professor of law at the University of Utah.

2011-04-01 00:00:00

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