In/Visible Courts: Military Tribunals As Other Spaces
Secrecy, National Security and the Vindication of Constitutional Law, 229-246 (David Cole, Federico Fabbrini & Arianna Vedaschi eds., Elgar 2013)
11 Pages Posted: 4 May 2018
Date Written: April 17, 2013
The article examines in comparative fashion the institutional and procedural features of the U.S. military commissions in Guantanamo Bay and the Israeli military courts in the West Bank, focusing on the trial of two prominent terrorism suspects. It shows that the choice whether to hold a terrorism trial in military or civilian forum involves multiple, complex moral and ideological determinations, not all of them leading to the same result. Specifically, military adjudication - despite its bias toward secrecy and fewer procedural rights - is shown to have some counter-intuitive benefits in terms of laying bare the political stakes of the trial. In Foucault's terms, military tribunals are revealed as Other Spaces, where we hide the things we cannot take our eyes off.
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