Nazi saboteurs on trial: a military tribunal and American law

Front Cover
University Press of Kansas, Jun 2, 2005 - Law - 183 pages
0 Reviews
The 9/11 attacks were not the first operations by foreign terrorists on American soil. In 1942, during World War II, eight Germans landed on our shores bent on sabotage. Caught before they could carry out their missions, under FDR's presidential proclamation they were hauled before a secret military tribunal and found guilty. After the Supreme Court's emergency session upheld the tribunal's authority, six of the men were executed. Louis Fisher chronicles the capture, trial and punishment of the Nazi saboteurs in order to examine the extent to which procedural rights are suspended in time of war. One of America's leading constitutional scholars. Fisher analyzes the political, legal, and administrative context of the Supreme Court decision "Ex parte Quirin (1942), reconstructing a rush to judgement that has striking relevance to current events. Fisher contends that the German's constitutional right to a civil trial was hijacked by an ill-conceived concentration of power within the presidency, overriding essential checks from the Supreme Court, Congress, and the office of the Judge Advocate General. He reveals that the trials were conducted in secret not to preserve national security but rather to shield the government's chief investigators and sentencing decisions from public scrutiny and criticism. Thus, the FBI's bogus claim to have nabbed the saboteurs entirely on their own was allowed to stand, while the saboterus' death sentences were initially kept hidden from public view. Fisher also takes issue with the Bush administration's mistaken citing of "Exparte Quirin as an "apt precedent" for trying suspected al Qaeda terrorists. Concisely designed for students and general readers, thisnewly abridged and updated edition provides a cautionary tale as our nation struggles to balance individual rights and national security, as seen most clearly in the recent Supreme Court decisions relating to Yaser Esam Hamdi

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

Nazi saboteurs on trial: a military tribunal and American law

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

In his first of two books analyzing military tribunals in this country and assessing their effectiveness and constitutionality, Fisher, senior specialist in Separation of Powers within the ... Read full review

Contents

Misadventures in America
21
The Supreme Court Steps In
73
Major Participants
169
Copyright

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2005)

Louis Fisher is Senior Specialist in Separation of Powers with the Congressional Research Service of the Library of Congress.

Bibliographic information