Only hours after a US district judge made permanent an injunction that bans the indefinite military detention of Americans without charge, the White House said they’d appeal to continue their efforts to keep a controversial new law on the books.
On Thursday, the Obama administration acknowledged that they plan to challenge a ruling made only a day earlier by US District Court Judge Katherine Forrest that concreted an injunction she issued four months prior on a provision included in the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act , or NDAA. In May, Judge Forrest said the indefinite detention statute in the NDAA failed to “pass constitutional muster” and ordered a temporary block. On Wednesday, she made that injunction permanent, but not without raising objection once again from the Executive Branch.
“First Amendment rights are guaranteed by the Constitution and cannot be legislated away,” Forrest wrote on Wednesday. “This Court rejects the Government’s suggestion that American citizens can be placed in military detention indefinitely, for acts they could not predict might subject them to detention.”
Judge Forrest’s decision this week reaffirms her earlier ruling that prohibits the US government from abiding by the indefinite detention provision in the NDAA, a clause that allows for American citizens to be detained and held on the suspicion of supporting terrorists “or associated forces” until a very vague time frame described as only “until the end of hostilities.” After US President Barack Obama signed the legislation into law on New Year’s Eve, a team of journalists and activists challenged it in court.