Hamdi v. Rumsfeld
- Case Date: 3/24/2004
- Project Name: Protecting America's Freedom: National Security and Defense
On June 28, 2004, the U.S. Supreme Court gave WLF a partial victory in a case that examined the government's right to detain American citizens as "enemy combatants" without being required to resort to the criminal justice system. The Court agreed with WLF that Taliban fighter Yasser Hamdi (and any other American captured on a battlefield) could be detained without trial as an "enemy combatant." However, the Court returned the case to the lower courts, ruling that Hamdi should be given a greater opportunity to contest the government's determination that he is, in fact, a Taliban fighter. The Court emphasized that in any such proceeding, the courts should accord substantial deference to the military. The Court agreed with WLF, for example, that the government can establish its case that Hamdi is an enemy combatant by submitting affidavits (rather than being required to produce live witnesses) and that the burden of proof should be on Hamdi to establish that he is not an enemy combatant.
More Information and Downloads:
3/24/2004: Download the Brief
Litigation Update: Court's Mixed Decisions In Enemy Combatant Cases Generally Favor U.S.