Author: Jonathan Mahler
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
An inspiring legal thriller set against the backdrop of the war on terror, The Challenge tells the inside story of a historic Supreme Court showdown. At its center are a Navy JAG and a young constitutional law professor who, in the aftermath of 9/11, find themselves defending their nation in the unlikeliest of ways: by suing the president of the United States on behalf of an accused terrorist in order to prevent the American government from breaking the law and violating the Constitution. Jonathan Mahler traces the journey of their client, Salim Ahmed Hamdan, from the Yemeni mosque where he was first recruited for jihad in 1998, through his years working as a driver for Osama bin Laden, to his capture in Afghanistan in November 2001 and his subsequent transfer to Guantanamo Bay. It was there that Hamdan was designated by President Bush to be tried before a special military tribunal and assigned a military lawyer to represent him, a thirty-five-year-old graduate student of the Naval Academy, Lieutenant Commander Charles Swift. No one expected Swift to mount much of a defense. Not only were the rules of the tribunals, America's first in more than fifty years, stacked against him, his superiors at the Pentagon were pressuring him to persuade Hamdan to plead guilty. But Swift didn't believe that the tribunals were either legal or fair, so he enlisted a young Georgetown law professor named Neal Katyal to help him sue the Bush administration over their legality. In the spring of 2006, Katyal, who had almost no trial experience, took the case to the Supreme Court and won. The landmark ruling has been called the Court's most important decision ever on presidential power and the rule of law. Written with the cooperation of Swift and Katyal, The Challenge follows the braided stories of Swift's intense, precarious relationship with Hamdan and the unprecedented legal case itself. Combining rich character portraits and courtroom drama reminiscent of Jonathan Harr's A Civil Action with sophisticated yet accessible legal analysis, The Challenge is a riveting narrative that illuminates some of the most pressing constitutional questions of the post-9/11 era.
An outspoken legal scholar and author of America on Trial reveals why Fifth Amendment rights matter and how they are being reshaped, limited, and in some cases revoked in the wake of 9/11, in this absorbing look at one of the most essential constitutional rights.
Argues that the Bush administration is abusing the law to give unlimited legal power to the president, citing the author's fight to win prisoners at Guantâanamo Bay the right to a judicial review.
This fascinating book recounts the compelling stories behind 14 of the most important criminal procedure cases in American legal history. • Includes 20 photographs of key participants and scenes • Explains legal principles through engaging, jargon-free prose • Connects the importance of the cases to constitutional criminal procedure • Explores the impact of Supreme Court decisions
Author: Melvin I. Urofsky
Publisher: Westview Press
Compellingly written, accessible, and interpretive, Melvin I. Urofsky's stories of major Supreme Court cases and the impact of each ruling on American constitutional law make a readable book for every student.
Focuses on the recent "Enemy Combatant Cases" to provide a stern critique of the legal and constitutional basis for the enormous expansion of presidential power during the Bush administration's "War on Terror," and the challenges (especially in the Supreme Court) that such expansion has inspired.
Our understanding of the politics of the presidency is greatly enhanced by viewing it through a developmental lens, analyzing how historical turns have shaped the modern institution. The Development of the American Presidency pays great attention to that historical weight but is organized topically and conceptually with the constitutional origins and political development of the presidency its central focus. Through comprehensive and in-depth coverage, this text looks at how the presidency has evolved in relation to the public, to Congress, to the Executive branch, and to the law, showing at every step how different aspects of the presidency have followed distinct trajectories of change. All the while, Ellis illustrates the institutional relationships and tensions through stories about particular individuals and specific political conflicts. Ellis's own classroom pedagogy of promoting active learning and critical thinking is well reflected in these pages. Each chapter begins with a narrative account of some illustrative puzzle that brings to life a central concept. A wealth of photos, figures, and tables allow for the visual presentations of concepts. A companion website not only acts as a further resources base—directing students to primary documents, newspapers, and data sources—but also presents interactive timelines, practice quizzes, and key terms to help students master the book's lessons.
The terrorist attacks of 9/11 are indelibly etched into our cultural memory. This is the story of how the legal ramifications of that day brought two presidents, Congress, and the Supreme Court into repeated confrontation over the incarceration of hundreds of suspected terrorists and "enemy combatants" at the US naval base in Guantánamo, Cuba. Could these prisoners (including an American citizen) be held indefinitely without due process of law? Did they have the right to seek their release by habeas corpus in US courts? Could they be tried in a makeshift military judicial system? With Guantánamo well into its second decade, these questions have challenged the three branches of government, each contending with the others, and each invoking the Constitution's separation of powers as well as its checks and balances. In The 9/11 Terror Cases, Allan A. Ryan leads students and general readers through the pertinent cases: Rasul v. Bush and Hamdi v. Rumsfeld, both decided by the Supreme Court in 2004; Hamdan v. Bush, decided in 2006; and Boumediene v. Bush, in 2008. An eloquent writer and an expert in military law and constitutional litigation, Ryan is an adept guide through the nuanced complexities of these cases, which rejected the sweeping powers asserted by President Bush and Congress, and upheld the rule of law, even for enemy combatants. In doing so, as we see clearly in Ryan's deft account, the Supreme Court's rulings speak directly to the extent and nature of presidential and congressional prerogative, and to the critical separation and balance of powers in the governing of the United States.
Letters from Nuremberg
Author: Christopher J. Dodd
Publisher: Broadway Books
The senior U.S. senator from Connecticut provides an insider's glimpse of the famed Nuremberg trials, based on the letters of his father, a prosecutor at the trials, to his mother, offering insights into the daily events in the courtroom, the Nazi war criminals who were on trial, and the standards of justice and international rules of law exemplified by Nuremberg. Reprint. 30,000 first printing.
Author: Charles Tiefer
Publisher: Univ of California Press
A law expert demonstrates how President George W. Bush manipulates the law to promote conservative and right-wing causes, describing how the Bush administration creates barriers to the media and congressional oversight that may bring to light covert motivations.
Judging executive power
Author: Richard J. Ellis
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
Judging Executive Power introduces students to sixteen important Supreme Court cases that have shaped the power of the American presidency. The cases selected include the removal power, executive privilege, executive immunity, the line-item veto, as well as a president's wartime powers from the Civil War to the War on Terror. The book both brings the courts back into the teaching of the American presidency and securely fixes landmark judicial opinions within their political and historical context.
The surprising truth behind Barack Obama's decision to continue many of his predecessor's counterterrorism policies. Conventional wisdom holds that 9/11 sounded the death knell for presidential accountability. In fact, the opposite is true. The novel powers that our post-9/11 commanders in chief assumed—endless detentions, military commissions, state secrets, broad surveillance, and more—are the culmination of a two-century expansion of presidential authority. But these new powers have been met with thousands of barely visible legal and political constraints—enforced by congressional committees, government lawyers, courts, and the media—that have transformed our unprecedentedly powerful presidency into one that is also unprecedentedly accountable. These constraints are the key to understanding why Obama continued the Bush counterterrorism program, and in this light, the events of the last decade should be seen as a victory, not a failure, of American constitutional government. We have actually preserved the framers’ original idea of a balanced constitution, despite the vast increase in presidential power made necessary by this age of permanent emergency.
Author: Stephen Sheehi
Publisher: SCB Distributors
"Sheehi's analysis of Islamophobia as an ideological formation brings a much needed dose of fresh air and analytical clarity ... A worthy update of Said's seminal discussion of Orientalism and one that leaves few players in the contemporary foreign policy establishment, in particular so-called liberals, unscathed." Mark Levine, Author of why they Don't Hate us and Heavy Metal Islam.