Le début de la fin pour Guantánamo

La « guerre contre la terreur » a forcé les démocraties à lutter tant bien que mal pour protéger les droits et libertés civiques de leurs ressortissants nationaux et étrangers. Le débat a été d’une forte intensité aux Etats-Unis, où l’on répète sans cesse que la Constitution ne relève pas d’un « pacte suicidaire » et que la sécurité nationale peut justifier des mesures extraordinaires. Certaines mesures – notamment des investigations sur des comptes bancaires et des écoutes téléphoniques sans autorisation – mettent en péril la liberté de tous. D’autres mesures – dont la plus connue est la détention d’environ 450 présumés combattants musulmans à Guantánamo Bay – affectent des personnes supposées ennemies.

Au vu du nombre croissant d’allégations de mauvais traitements, le gouvernement du Président George W. Bush a compris, il y a quelque temps, que son camp de détention de Guantánamo ne pouvait rester indéfiniment en activité. Il ne voulait pas réitérer l’expérience du procès de Zacharias Moussaoui, dans lequel, après les nombreux pourvois propagandistes des prévenus, ce vingtième présumé pirate de l’air du 11 septembre 2001 a finalement été reconnu coupable et condamné à l’emprisonnement à perpétuité. L’administration Bush a donc opté pour un compromis : une commission de juges militaires reconnaîtra moins de droits aux accusés et limitera les recours devant les tribunaux civils.

Dans l’affaire Hamdan contre Rumsfeld , l’arrêt de la Cour suprême des Etats-Unis prononçait un « non » : la mise en oeuvre du pouvoir exécutif de Bush est allée trop loin. La décision de la cour aura par la suite des retombées durables sur la structure constitutionnelle américaine.

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