New Bill Authorizes Rendition of American Citizens Living within the United States to Other Countries for Torture

George Washington's picture

Top experts say that the newly-passed National Defense Authorization Act authorizes indefinite detention of Americans living within the United States.

Top legal experts point out that the government claims the right to assassinate American citizens on U.S. soil without any charge or trial or other Constitutional protection.

I noted last month that Congress was considering repealing prohibitions against torture. (I wrote to attorneys at the ACLU, but haven't received word yet on whether or such a provision has been enacted).

However, Mother Jones notes today that Congress has explicitly authorized rendition, allowing American Citizens on U.S. soil to be sent to other countries which do torture:

A defense spending bill that passed both houses of Congress overwhelmingly and is set to be signed by President Barack Obama as early as this week could make it easier for the government to transfer American terrorist suspects to foreign regimes and security forces.


The National Defense Authorization Act (PDF) contains a section that says the president has the power to transfer suspected members and supporters of Al Qaeda, the Taliban, or "associated" groups "to the custody or control of the person's country of origin, any other foreign country, or any other foreign entity."


That means if the president determines you're a member or supporter of Al Qaeda or "associated forces," he could order you to be handed over to the Saudis, the Egyptians, the Yemenis ("any other foreign country"), any of their respective security forces, or even the United Nations ("any other foreign entity"). (You can read the relevant section of the law in the document viewer at the end of this article; look for the highlighted annotations.)




[Daphne Eviatar, a lawyer with Human Rights First] adds that there are "a whole lot of scenarios" where the government might want to transfer a suspected terrorist—even a US citizen—to foreign custody. For example, the administration might not want to go through the political mess of determining whether to send a suspect to Gitmo, try him in a military commission, or use the civilian system. The administration might also want to avoid the mandatory habeas corpus review that would come if the US held the suspect itself. In such a case, transferring the suspect to a foreign security force might present an appealing option.




You can read the detention and transfer provisions of the NDAA here ...

The Founding Fathers would not recognize this nation as America.

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YHC-FTSE's picture

Extraordinary rendition - another sick euphemism for Americans kidnapping and torturing anyone they suspect - has been reported for years, yet with few notable exceptions, nobody gave a shit. Places like Uzbekistan where they are known to boil their prisoners alive have the CIA seal of approval as their favourite holiday destination for sick fucks and their kidnap victims.

Americans in their millions have been posting online and expressing themselves on the msm for years how extraordinary rendition for suspects is a good idea, and keeps them safe. It's only when it affects YOU that we hear the whining. People like me have been screaming at the top of their lungs that when your govt starts to treat other people like animals, it's only a matter of time before they treat YOU like cattle for slaughter. Moo. Welcome to the party pal.

Escapeclaws's picture

In Argentina what we call terrorists were called "subversives".  Here's a great website that will give some idea of where all this may lead. Be sure to read the testimonials of the tortured and read about whole families and children who were murdered, just to put things in perspective.  The first thing the government did was to do away with habeas corpus.

This is really sick business.

Maybe Zerohedgers should think more about cyanide tablets for personal use in case SHTF rather than lead.

Nobody For President's picture

Wonder how the Supremes will do when portions of this bill get hauled up to be tested against several Bill of Rights sections?


I suspect they will love it...


Benjamin Glutton's picture

Good news George! Obama will use a signing statement to neuter the language regarding indefinite detention of Americans.




GMadScientist's picture

"The Founding Fathers would not recognize this nation as America."

I'm pretty sure you have no idea what you're talkin' about, George...

Fozzy Slippers's picture

I always love to read the obvious fusion center gov troll comments on articles like this.

Oh and all you Walmart shoppers. Step right on to this rail car. We will be moving you to a safer location.


Money 4 Nothing's picture

Supposedly, not signed yet, but an auto pen is not out of the question.

AldousHuxley's picture

outsourcing is big these days....


maybe CIA wants to save money by using cheaper offshore torturers instead of American ones because you have to pay them health benefits.


Plus Iraq is having groupon sale of hire 1 get 10 free professional torturers this Christmas. Ironically, they were all laid off when Saddam was dethroned.


Why does US have to do this? because they are really scared of something.

TheObsoleteMan's picture

I can 100% guarantee you that Ron Paul will NOT be the President of the USA. Notice I didn't say that he wouldn't be elected, I just said he wouldn't be President. Oh what short memories! Remember the 2000 election? As Stalin once said: "it's not who gets the most votes, it's who counts the votes." we are stuck with Obama another term AT LEAST. I can't see any other republican candidate defeating him fair & square.Besides, the indefinate detention thing has been done here before; Lincoln did it during the Civil War. They will claim that precident is all that they need.

Barack Obama's picture

"Top legal experts point out that the government claims the right to assassinate American citizens on U.S. soil without any charge or trial or other Constitutional protection."

The people are the govrenment, so this new legislation also empowers the people. Are not our elected officials American citizens on U.S. soil?

AldousHuxley's picture

people are the govrenment


can't be more wrong.....

people are the government in theory, but in practice government is for elites to maintain status quo without having to compete in free market. The moment some family becomes rich they send their kids into politics so they can pass laws forever requiring public money be funneled into their family business.


If you think college education is expensive ticket to a job, think about how much money you have to spend to become the addition to all that education....there is a big reason why you need to spend millions to get a job where you earn only thousands.

mezurak's picture

I don't know what you guys are worried about. Iraq's Maliki is about to turn the Persian Gulf into the Grand Canyon. China is maneuvering to create the Chinese version of Japan's Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere. And the Europeans are busy dividing their political boundaries in the precusor to a new round of war.

Al and his buddies will be the least of our worries.

The only rendition you will have in your future is a letter from Obama ordering you to report to boot camp.

f16hoser's picture

Grassley from Iowa voted for the final version of the NDAA. Vote this fuck-head out of office. NOW!

New_Meat's picture

GW: trust not in the ACLU. - Ned

covert's picture

amen. shouldn't they be convicted first? where are the national security writs?


Schmuck Raker's picture

I would post a comment critical of this new legislation...but, I'm afraid to.

Tompooz's picture

Time for that deer-in-the-headlights picture.  A whole population of them too paralyzed to vote with their feet while they still can.

UnderDeGun's picture

Sorry. Anything from Mother Jones isnt worth the paper its printed on. And if you use "Al Jazera", "Mother Jones" or "RT" and, probably "Alex Jones Infowars" as quoted references to validate anything as "truth"As it relates to the United States, then have fun brother. Its like using Hitler to criticise attacks on Israel. It rings hollow and self serving. Kinda like self hating jew named SOROS.

alien-IQ's picture

Shouldn't you be posting on the Fox News website instead of here?

Seems more your cup of tea.

robobbob's picture

Don't listen to GW. Don't listen to self serving leftists, or righties either. The law is available online. There are provisions to safeguard your rights- but then the loopholes begin

Ignore these warnings at your own peril.

The Alarmist's picture

Andrew McCarthy and other wise and informed souls inform me that I have nothing to fear if I have not transgressed some fine line between good-guys and bad-guys .... problem is that some nebulous soul is the "decider."  I could wake up any day and, unknowing to me, be an enemy of the state.  I am assured by constitutional experts that this will only happen where it is appropriate.  One must have a lot of faith that other un-known persons still have enough of a consciencse to form a reasonable opinion of what that might mean. To be frank, I do not trust their judgement, given an informed idea of what that might mean .... but it does not matter, as they (an un-identified, un-accountable group will decide whether I am worthy of being given a pass or should be subject to further scrutiny.

Can one sense why we might actually be worried?

Westcoastliberal's picture

Sure that's what they said in Nazi Germany too.  Then all the sudden if you were a Jew you were among the "transgressors".

Bottom, line, we don't do shit like this in America!

ebworthen's picture

And they'll render our fat as they chide us for not accepting the lofty goals of the Fatherland, or is it Mother U.S.S.A.?

Everybodys All American's picture

The Founding Fathers would not recognize this nation as America...

couldn't agree more. I wonder why this is so necessary right now. What has the powers that be so frightened.

dolly madison's picture

couldn't agree more. I wonder why this is so necessary right now. What has the powers that be so frightened.

They're preparing for the unrest coming here.  What happened with OWS is just the beginning, and they know it.  The revolutionary talk is at a fevered pitch online, and they watch what we are saying online now.  Plus, more austerity is coming.  They are preparing to arrest and indefinitely detain without a trial dissenters.  SOPA & NDAA are happening now are to combat the coming revolution before it goes to far for them to stop.  So, we shall see if they are able to stop it or not.

A Lunatic's picture

They are not frightened. They are on the verge of gaining the the risk of losing their own souls of course, however that is an entirely different matter......of indifference to them.

cdskiller's picture

Um, my brain just exploded. Haven't we just been told very clearly that Goldman Sachs, Bank of America, Citi and JPM are considered "coalition partners"? Cause if that's the case, considering the kind of shit I have been writing over the past 3 years, I'm in deepshit trouble, man. See you bitches in the cells, baby.

High Plains Drifter's picture


us general says we are ready to go to war with iran.  good maybe we should put this piece of shit in the front of the attack.    where in the hell does these people come from?   is this an american talking?   what planet do these pinheads come from?   traitors.......every damn one of any soldiers and airmen etc , are going to just go along with this madness?    what is wrong with these people?  

Pants McPants's picture

Agreed - and if (god forbid) Romney ends up in the White House I recommend sending every last one of his children into the fight.

Rodent Freidkorps is likely already there (riiigghhhtttt)......that lovable keyboard commando.

High Plains Drifter's picture


now rasussen is saying romney is in the lead. that is such bullshit..........nobody likes that prick...........they are going to steal the election from paul...........

GMadScientist's picture

Who gives a rat's ass?

It's the IA has all the predictive power of a xeroxed ouiji board.

Westcoastliberal's picture

I agree and what the hell is he doing granting interviews with members of the foreign press?  Isn't that the State Department's job?

If you agree with me that collapse is becoming unavoidable, don't despair, prepare!

Benjamin Glutton's picture

Will we cheer if Obama uses this new power to give the Banksters a speedy trial from an unmanned drone at 40,000 ft.?


see, the new law has potential!


thanks for your vigilance George.

Lednbrass's picture

The only thing Obama is going to use a drone at 40000 feet for on bankers is to airdrop leaflets soliciting more money.

Benjamin Glutton's picture

But the President asserts:  “I can tell you, just from 40,000 feet, that some of the most damaging behavior on Wall Street, in some cases, some of the least ethical behavior on Wall Street, wasn't illegal.”  Kroft, sadly, did not follow up on this incredible and, if true, extraordinarily important assertion.  Obama’s statements about fraud and ethics are inaccurate on multiple levels. 
Obama’s factual assertions about the failure to prosecute fraud are unresponsive to the question, false, and logically inconsistent.  Note the artful manner in which Obama evaded answering Kroft’s question.  Kroft asks why there are no prosecutions of the Wall Street frauds that drove the crisis.  Obama answers that “some” unethical Wall Street actions were not illegal.  Obama’s answer implicitly admitted that most Wall Street actions that caused the crisis were criminal.  He simply argues that some highly unethical behavior by Wall Street that was not illegal contributed to that crisis.  As David Cay Johnston emphasized in his column about Obama’s response to Kroft’s question, Obama’s answer is a non-answer.  Why has he failed to prosecute any of the criminal conduct by Wall Street that drove the financial crisis?  The (alleged) fact that “some” destructive Wall Street conduct was highly unethical, but not illegal, obviously provides no basis for not prosecuting what Obama concedes was primarily criminal conduct.   

WK Black parses the POTUS excuses for not prosecuting Bankers:


Plumplechook's picture

Outsourcing bitchez!!  First it was our factory workers jobs being sent offshore,  then our IT workers,  then our accountants - now even our home-grown torturers jobs are under threat from cheap third-world competitors!

MobBarley's picture

My maxim: if any legal contract is longer than 3 pages there's a lot of lying, obfuscation, and ill intent buried in there.


Uncle Remus's picture

Anything beyond a handshake ...

weyes1's picture

A dishonest man can not believe that an honest man will tell the truth.

rwe2late's picture

Now that you mention who lobbied for the bill:

Senator Levin has been a principal actor behind the latest NDAA wording to expand the so-called “war on terror”, and subject to indefinite imprisonment any “ person who was a part of or substantially supported al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners.”

Clearly, one intent is to formally threaten imprisonment for anyone who “supports” directly or indirectly, intentionally or unintentionally, any “associated forces” deemed to be “engaged in hostilities” against Israel.

No trial, no evidence needed, even apparently were Israel to precipitate the “hostilities” by aggression. What exactly constitutes “substantial support” or “associated forces” to be determined by whatever definition ‘they’ choose, without challenge or appeal.

Senator Levin receives more donations than anyone else in Congress from the formerly named American Zionist Council, which is now known by the more politically correct American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC).

Tompooz's picture

What exactly constitutes “substantial support” 

Perhaps posting something deemed inflammatory to a blog with 100000 followers?

Smokey1's picture

George---You wrote to attorneys of the ACLU ???

Right up your alley, you fucking communist. EVERY article you write that is posted here motherfucks America. Keep pushing your communist agenda and maybe, when things turn south in this country (and they will soon ), the government will drag your sorry ass in on charges of treason.

And of course you'd have to plead no contest, because you know they'd easily get a conviction by using your volumes of America bashing articles against you.

Move to Iran you fucking traitorous douchebag.

Lednbrass's picture

While GW is certainly on the left and I disagree with him on much, youre nuckin futs Scooter.  This is dangerous and a terrible precedent for anyone who isnt a Fascist.

Let me put this in terms even you can understand- When a Holder or Napolitano declares right wing male Christians to be terrorists, what then?  This law is bad news, and will be ratcheted up incrementally over the years like everything else that comes from the Federal government.

Take your TV and radio out back and shoot them, your brain has rotted.

Smokey1's picture

If your brain was on the edge of a razor blade, it would look like a BB rolling down a four lane highway.

Hop on your Scooter and take a ride up GW's hershey highway.

alien-IQ's picture

are you a cop or in any way connected to any law enforcement agency?

your "smokey1" moniker tends to suggests that. Anyone that was over the age of 10 in the 70's will know what I mean.


or are you just a fascist?

robobbob's picture

pull your head out of your ass. do you support the constitution, or do you support the government? With every new police state law, the two are moving farther and farther apart. Soon, they will be completely opposed.

When the government is wrong, its wrong. Being against repression does not make you a supporter of communism.

Smokey1's picture

Head on back to OWS so you and your vile, stinking brethren can blame everyone else for your despicable lives. You sanctimonious cocksuckers think it is incumbent upon you to piss and moan, whine bitch and complain about the government----effectively renouncing the freely elected democratic system here.

Tough shit if you don'tlike it.

Transformer's picture

You know, you should read up on the events in Paris, starting in about 1791.  You might want to change your tune a little bit.