High on Habeas

What to Do About Gitmo

Who Knows: LJST Professor Nasser Hussain on Guantanamo Bay and Detainee Rights

June 15, 2009

On his second day in office, President Obama signed an executive order committing to close the U.S. military detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, by January 2010 and to review the legal status of the “enemy combatants” detained there. It was a development closely followed by Amherst’s Nasser Hussain, associate professor of law, jurisprudence and social thought, who has spent years writing about the writ of habeas corpus (the judicial mandate requiring that prisoners be brought before the court to determine whether the government has the right to continue detaining them) and the use of emergency powers. He spoke with Public Affairs’ Caroline Hanna recently about his work and the new administration’s policy on detainee treatment.