T Nation

Gitmo Tribunals vs. Nuremberg Tribunals

Forget opinions, for now. Are these facts, facts?

[i]Nearly 100 foreign enemy combatants to be tried at Guantanamo Bay will have more rights than Nazi war criminals who faced the Nuremberg tribunal, a Senate panel was told yesterday.

Detainees in the war on terror will have the presumption of innocence and an automatic appeal, the latter not even afforded to U.S. citizens, said Brig. Gen. Thomas W. Hartmann, legal adviser to the Convening Authority for the Office of Military Commissions.

“No such presumption existed,” said Gen. Hartmann in reference to Nuremberg while speaking to the Senate Judiciary subcommittee on terrorism, technology and homeland security. "There were no rules of evidence, and virtually any evidence was freely admitted.

“That was painfully apparent to those who were found guilty and received the death penalty �?? they were hung within hours and days of the completion of the sentence announcement,” he said.

Steven A. Engel, Justice Department deputy assistant attorney general, said that extending the peacetime notion of habeas corpus to military prisoners would be “unprecedented.”

“In the nearly 800 years of the writ’s existence, no English or American court has ever granted habeas relief to alien enemy soldiers captured and detained during wartime,” Mr. Engel said.[/i]

All of this manages not to touch an important point, exactly how many of the Guantanamo inmates are “enemy soldiers”?

Most of them were kidnapped somewhere, for some reason and sold to the US army.

You are trying to apply 60 year-old standards to present times.

While I fully acknowledge that the thing with unlawful combatants is tricky indeed and America has certain rights to detain them, Orion is right in so far that a lot of them were simply abducted.
The top-nazis were high ranking criminals who all profited one way or the other. The symbolic gesture, that no statesman can hide behind reason d’etat was a wonderful and welcoming idea.
Snatching away small fish, even would be Al Qaida members, is hardly comparable to that.