Persuasive Essay on the use of military tribunals for criminal prosecution


Persuasive Essay on the use of military tribunals for criminal prosecution






Persuasive Essay on the use of military tribunals for criminal prosecution

The renewal of the military use of force, confinement and tribunal during the proceedings against Sheik Khalid Mohammad and four other suspects in September eleventh terrorist attack has fueled concern about the differences between the trials conducted by military commissions and those facilitated by federal trials. Several legal issues may hinder or facilitate the fight against terrorism such as military commissions, treatment of detainees, outsourcing of military functions, rendition, and extradition. This paper argues that the use of military force, military confinement and military tribunals is necessary for prosecuting suspected terrorists.

The use of military will protect civilian courts. Researchers argue that use of the military courts will protect civilian juries, judges, media, and prosecutors from terrorist reprisals. Moreover, protection of terrorist suspects would be a hard task and cause difficulties during their transportation from courts to jails in public roads. Additionally, a guilty verdict on accused terrorists by civilian courts would make them vulnerable to violence by affiliate terrorist group.

Disciplined panel members, military commissions, and members have a have a history of evaluating evidence and finding suspected war criminals guilty. Besides, Moore and Turner (2010) explains that a majority of the panel members will likely have had prior experience as either court martial staff or court-martial convening authorities or both. Furthermore, Moore and a colleague argue that a terrorist stands a fair trial before a military tribunal than would be before a civilian jury.

Military prosecutions do not require a unanimous decision, as is the case for civil courts (, 2016). Military tribunals require only two-thirds of the members present to concur for a criminal sentencing and finding. The absence for a unanimous decision by the courts also reduces the prosecutor’s burden. Likewise, if a terrorist were to be tried in criminal courts, there is a high likelihood that confidential and classified information will be compromised (Maogoto, 2013).

On the contrary, there exists controversial argument on the use of military interventions. For instance, it is likely that military tribunals will be viewed as courts of vengeance and not of justice (, 2016). Those suspected of criminal activities might not be under constitutional protection. Others argue that there exist no prove to show that civilian courts cannot perform terrorist trials.

The above discussion shows that a terrorist should not be accorded civilian court trials for various reasons such as it would compromise the safety of judges, jury, and prosecutors. Moreover, classified information might be revealed. However, measures need to be effected to ensure that the military tribunals are not misused in their administration of justice.





References,. (2016). Military Tribunals for “Unlawful Combatants” – Discover the Networks. Retrieved 12 February 2016, from

Maogoto, J. N. (2013). Battling terrorism: legal perspectives on the use of force and the war on terror. Ashgate Publishing, Ltd..

Moore, J., & Turner, R. (2010). Legal issues in the struggle against terror. Durham, N.C.: Carolina Academic Press.

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