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Issue 4 Positions

The US government has the right to incarcerate foreign nationals suspected of terrorism without formal charges or the advice of an attorney.

Issue 4 Resources

Positions on this Issue:

Any person incarcerated under the U.S. government should have the right to any legal assistance. contributed by taquito

No, the government does not have the right to incarcerate foreign nationals without reason. (final draft) ~contributed by taquito

While it is unconstitutional to give someone an unjust trial, it does not seem unreasonable to hold someone if it is an issue of national security. I do not believe they should be put to trial without an attorney, but it is vitally important that the US government have all power necessary to protect itself and its people from terrorism without the delay of paperwork and court. Contributed by abc123.

The Bill of Rights(Amendments 6 and 8) specifically grants the right to trial and defense counsel in all criminal prosecutions to the accused persons and prohibits the use of cruel and unusual punishment against the accused. In this case, holding an individual against his will without presenting formal charges and ensuring the rights of the accused are not trampled on; is most certainly a cruel and unusual punishment. The US government is wrong in doing this as it is explicitly unconstitutional. contributed by Turbo593 Unconstitutional?, Undoubtedly!

I agree with both of you. This is strictly unconstitutional. Without formal charges nobody should be placed in prison. It is also unecessary to deprive anyone of the advice of an attorney. contributed by light_switch
Link to my position page: light_switch

Yes, the US government has the right to incarcerate foreign nationals suspected of terrorism without formal charges or the advice of an attorney. ~Contributed by Czechowicz

I believe that if the terrorists are a threat to national security then we should be able to hold them without due process until a time in which it is best for the nation to allow them an attorney and to be held accountable for crimes committed. As far as being held against their will being a cruel and unusaul punishment, that is ubsurd. They are considered prisoners of war and should be treated accordingly. The key word being PRISONERS. contributed by HerbyHancock

I believe that incarceration without consulting a judge, lawyer or jury is neccessary to protect the nation. Especially in the case of foreign nationals, who are not protected under our Constitution because they are not citizens, such a policy should be at the disposal of law enforcement, military and intelligence agencies. I believe that if it becomes a neccessity, crucial time can be saved by imprisoning the suspects, thus making America that much safer.
Contributed by: Rohan

I believe that any suspect of a crime in American custody should have right to legal consultation. Without allowing this right, the American government would not be upholding the ideals that have made this country what it is today. However, I believe that if there is a suspected threat concerning national security, the United States government should have the right to hold a foreign national without formal charges. – ATZ03

I feel that if the security of our country is possibly being threatened, it should be permissible to hold those suspected of committing a crime for the time it takes to thoroughly investigate the situation. However, it is crutial that the suspect recieve the advice of an attorney, and the right to a speedy trial. Lacking these things would be very unconstitutional. contributed by ParrotHead
A time for change final draft
evaluations for "A time for change"

I believe the United States should be able to hold foreign nationals without question for a certain amount of time, so as to take care of any immediate threats. Especially if they are captured while on the battlefield! Contributed by Hondezy

Granting the US government the right to incarcerate foreign nationals suspected of terrorism without formal charges or the advice of an attorney will lead to the violation of several fundamental human rights. It should be necessary for formal charges to be filed against someone before incarceration whether or not they are a foreign national. Let us not forget that this nation would not have survived without the numerous inputs of foreign national over the years. Thus it is grossly unfair to the millions of law abiding foreign nationals to have their rights suddenly revoked. If the government feels there is some possibly risk as a result of a foreign national then first pursue finding substantial evidence, and once found draft charges. Especially today when its is extremely difficult to get to the US without tons of background checks, such risks are greatly reduced.
Contributed by Sal

If it is necessary to incarcerate foreign nationals for the safety of American's, then that is what needs to be done. If we give them a trial and just let a few loose, they will just go back to their awful regime and fight us again. I will not allow people to act as if this is a political matter, for the well-being of foreign nationals, who aim to kill every American, is not to be our first priority in this situation.
Contributed by Napolean

It is absolutely necessary to file formal charges and provide an attorney for foreign nationals. America is not a bottomless pit where foreigners can find themselves trapped in. We should be a country that abides by justice, not just self interest. Regardless of personal beliefs, all people should be given equal rights as to maintain the integrity of our legal system. It is unjustified to provide rights on the basis of personal interest; rights must be provided universaly. A Work In Progress
Contributed by Vincent

This nation does not have the right to treat foreign nationals with such a lack of rights as lack of attorney or lack of charges. By doing so, we set a worldwide standard that any non-native person can be held with without the above rights. If another nation held one of our citizens for no reason, there would be public outcry in their defense until they were freed. It is unfair for us to have a double standard.
Contributed by CollegeDems

The US government does not have the right to incarcerate foreign nationals suspected of terrorism without formal charges or the advice of an attorney. by spearmint

The U.S. government should be endowed the right to incarcerate individuals suspected of terrorist activities as prisoners of war, given appropriate evidence of such suspicion.
Contributed by Bj1275

The current government's extremist attitude toward terrorism has led us to desert some of our most fundamental principles. by Alga

The United States has had a very rough history when it comes to fighting wars. But none of these compare to the fight against terrorism, in where there is no defined enemy, and innocent people are the target of assaults. by AdamSmith

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