Title

The War On Terrorism: Military Tribunals And The First Amendment

Publication Title

Communication Law and Policy

Publication Date

2004

Document Type

Article

DOI

10.1207/s15326926clp0903_2

Keywords

war on terrorism, military tribunals, First Amendment

Disciplines

Communication

Abstract

Shortly after the September 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, Congress passed a resolution granting the President sweeping authority to take all action necessary to fight the war on terrorism. The President then issued an order authorizing the use of military tribunals to try alleged terrorists. Some civil libertarians and scholars have expressed concerns that the use of military tribunals provided in the President's order infringes on Sixth Amendment rights to a fair trial. Far less commentary has centered on First Amendment implications of this executive branch initiative. This article considers some possible First Amendment implications of the initiative. Specifically, traditional notions of the right of the public to see and the right of the media to cover trials are placed in the context of wartime.

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