JASTA The Beginning of the End for the U.S | World Defense

JASTA The Beginning of the End for the U.S

Scorpion

THINK TANK: SENIOR
Joined
Nov 27, 2014
Messages
3,797
Reactions
4 3,139 52
Country
Saudi Arabia
Location
Saudi Arabia
Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA) (S. 2040) is a law passed by the United States Congress that narrows the scope of the legal doctrine of foreign sovereign immunity and amends the United States Code in regards to civil claims against a foreign state for injuries, death, or damages from an act of international terrorism. Previously, U.S. victims of international terrorism were permitted to sue a foreign state if such state was listed as part of State Sponsors of Terrorism by the United States Department of State and if the U.S. victims were harmed by that state's aid for international terrorism against them. The new law authorizes federal courts to exercise jurisdiction over any foreign state's critical support for one's act of international terrorism against a U.S. national or property regardless if such state is designated as a state sponsor of terrorism or not. The bill passed the Senate with no opposition in May 2016 and, in September 2016, was unanimously passed by the House of Representatives. While the bill does not mention the September 11 attacksor the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the practical effect of the legislation is to allow to proceed a longstanding civil lawsuit against the Kingdom by the victims, families, and other interests that were injured or damaged in those attacks. On September 28, 2016, both houses of Congress passed the bill into law after overriding a veto from President Obama which had occurred five days earlier. This was the first presidential veto override of Obama's administration.

Status of sovereign immunity
John B. Bellinger III, former Legal Adviser of the Department of State warned that the bill could encourage other countries to enact measures that limit sovereign immunity, including the United States'. Law professor Curtis Bradley at Duke University told ABC News that the bill could result in U.S. citizen lawsuits against potentially any country. Bradley also said that it could lead to legal response in other countries against U.S. activities such as drone strikes and military aid to Israel.
 

Scorpion

THINK TANK: SENIOR
Joined
Nov 27, 2014
Messages
3,797
Reactions
4 3,139 52
Country
Saudi Arabia
Location
Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia slams JASTA law

The Saudi foreign ministry said the enactment of JASTA would contribute to the “erosion” of the principle of sovereign immunity. (AP)
By Staff writer Al Arabiya EnglishFriday, 30 September 2016
Text size A A A
The Saudi foreign ministry said late Thursday that the enactment of the US legislation allowing 9/11 victims to sue the kingdom would weaken sovereign immunity and leave a negative impact on all nations.

A ministerial source said the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA) would contribute to the “erosion” of the principle of sovereign immunity, which has governed international relations for hundreds of years, read a statement on the state-run news agency.

The source further added that this would have a negative impact on all nations, including the United States.

The source explained that many nations oppose JASTA as well as many American national security experts, who are aware of the “dangers” JASTA represents.

These “dangers” were the reason why President Barack Obama, the US Secretary of Defense, The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the Director of the CIA have expressed their opposition to JASTA as it has been drafted.

The official source concluded by expressing "hope that wisdom will prevail and that Congress will take the necessary steps to correct this legislation in order to avoid the serious unintended consequences that may ensue."

The US legislation passed by the Congress on Wednesday would allow families of victims of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks to sue Saudi Arabia for damages.
 

Scorpion

THINK TANK: SENIOR
Joined
Nov 27, 2014
Messages
3,797
Reactions
4 3,139 52
Country
Saudi Arabia
Location
Saudi Arabia
Erdogan slams US Congress over JASTA law


ANKARA: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan condemned Saturday a US Congress vote to override Barack Obama’s veto of a bill allowing 9/11 victims to sue Saudi Arabia, saying he expected the move to be reversed as soon as possible.
Relations between Ankara and Riyadh have tightened considerably in the past months as they pursue joint interests in Syria. Erdogan had just the day earlier hosted Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin NaIFf for talks at his palace.
“The allowing by the US Congress of lawsuits to be opened against Saudi Arabia over the 9/11 attacks is unfortunate,” Erdogan said in a speech for the opening of parliament.
“It’s against the principle of individual criminal responsibility for crimes. We expect this false step to be reversed as soon as possible,” he added.
Families of 9/11 victims have campaigned for the law, convinced the Saudi government had a hand in the attacks that killed almost 3,000 people.
Fifteen of the 19 hijackers were Saudi citizens, but no link to the government has been proven. The Saudi government denies any ties to the plotters.
Obama called the vote a “dangerous precedent” while Saudi Arabia warned it risked having “disastrous consequences.”
The visit by the Crown Prince Mohammed bin Naif to Ankara was the latest sign of the burgeoning relationship between Turkey and Saudi Arabia.
Erdogan told Naif Friday that the expanding ties “offer opportunities for regional and global stability,” the Anadolu news agency said. Crown Prince Mohammed said Riyadh was pleased that the two countries “have the same thinking on all issues.”
Erdogan also bestowed on the crown prince Turkey’s second highest state decoration for foreign nationals, the Order of the Republic.
The Turkish president earlier this year also backed Saudi Arabia in a diplomatic crisis with Iran over Riyadh’s execution of Shiite cleric Sheikh Nimr Al-Nimr, convicted of terrorism, in January.
 

Scorpion

THINK TANK: SENIOR
Joined
Nov 27, 2014
Messages
3,797
Reactions
4 3,139 52
Country
Saudi Arabia
Location
Saudi Arabia
JASTA: Irresponsible And Dangerous


POOL VIA GETTY IMAGES

Congress’ vote to override President Obama’s veto of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act was both embarrassing and irresponsible. The bill, known as JASTA, amends the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act allowing U.S. citizens to sue foreign governments and entities for damages resulting from acts of terrorism committed on U.S. soil on or after September 11, 2001.

Clearly directed at the Government of Saudi Arabia, JASTA has caused enormous concern and not only in that country. In his veto statement, President Obama cited three reasons for his strong opposition to the bill.

In the first place, JASTA takes the authority to determine whether a state has become a sponsor of terrorism away from the federal government and places it in the hands of local courts which the President noted could make “consequential decisions... based upon incomplete information... [about] the culpability of individual foreign governments and their role in terrorist activities against the United States.” This, he argued, is “neither an effective nor a coordinated way for us to respond to indications that a foreign government might have been behind a terrorist attack”.

The president went on to note that the U.S. takes its responsibility seriously and only designates a foreign government of being a state sponsor of terrorism after “national security, foreign policy, and intelligence professionals carefully review all available information.” The implication of his argument is that it is dangerous to take this serious process out of the hands of the professionals and turn it over to tort lawyers, juries, and local judges.

The president’s second concern was that in passing this bill, Congress upends the long standing principle of foreign sovereign immunity. This, he warned, would open the door for other governments to pass similar legislation that would “allow their domestic courts” to hold the U.S. liable for actions committed by U.S. personnel or “members of an armed group that received U.S. assistance...or abuses committed by police units that received U.S. training.” This would put the assets of the United States and the foreign holdings of American businesses at risk.

Finally, the president noted that JASTA would “create complications in our relationships with even our closest partners” endangering our nation’s ability to seek “their cooperation on key national security issues.”

In overriding the strong case the president made in issuing his veto, Congress acted in a manner that was irresponsible, dangerous and damaging to the national interests of the United States. Most disturbing was the fact that, on the day of the vote, 28 Senators released a letter in which they acknowledged that the bill was flawed, pledging to “fix” it in the next term. They understood that they were wrong and still voted to override the veto.

The problem is that damage has been done that no “fix” will cure. Not unlike the Dubai Ports controversy of a decade ago, JASTA has shaken Arab trust in the United States putting at risk business partnerships and national security relationships. I have already heard from Arab businessmen who are saying that they are reconsidering investments in and partnerships with American businesses. This happened after Dubai Ports and it will happen once again in the aftermath of JASTA.

While Members of Congress will argue that they passed JASTA out of concern for the families of the victims of the 9/11 terror attacks, their motives were simply not that pure. More to the point, I suspect that they were motivated by crass opportunism: exploitation of the continued pain of the families of 9/11 victims, the pervasiveness of anti-Arab sentiment (with Saudi Arabia being an especially soft target), and electoral considerations.

In voting to override Obama’s veto, Congress ignored the fact that there is no evidence that the government of Saudi Arabia was responsible for the 9/11 terrorist attacks. As the White House spokesperson made clear after the vote, the U.S. 9/11 Commission Report “concluded that they were not able to find any evidence that the Saudi government as an institution or that any senior Saudi government official were knowingly supportive of the 9/11 plotters.”

That being the case and that being known by Members of Congress, one might reasonably ask why they wouldn’t have been honest with the families of the victims — and their lawyers who were pressing them to act — and warn them of the dangers and the ultimate disappointment of moving down this path? Was it because they lacked political courage or was it because in an election year they took the more expedient path of passing JASTA?

Here’s what might happen now. The tort lawyers who “represent” the families will try to shop around for a friendly jurisdiction in which to file their case. They will hope to make their case before a sympathetic jury, playing on their sympathies, their fears, and their prejudices. Any decision will be appealed and at some level will be overturned. Along the way, both the Saudi government and the families will pay millions in legal fees; more damage will be done to the U.S.-Arab relationship; and, in the end, no one will benefit except the lawyers, themselves. The problem is that the Members of Congress who created this heartbreaking mess for the families, the United States, and the U.S.-Arab relationship will most likely not be held accountable or feel responsible for what they have done.
 

Scorpion

THINK TANK: SENIOR
Joined
Nov 27, 2014
Messages
3,797
Reactions
4 3,139 52
Country
Saudi Arabia
Location
Saudi Arabia
Iraqi group seeks US compensation in light of JASTA

US Army soldiers from B Company, 1st Squadron, 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment lead a blindfolded man suspected of planting a roadside bomb near their patrol in the Shiite stronghold of Sadr City in Baghdad, Iraq. (File photo: AP)
Staff writer, Al Arabiya English Sunday, 2 October 2016
Text size JASTA) that was recently approved by the Congress in Washington, Al Arabiya News Channel reported Saturday.

JASTA has been thrusted into the limelight after Congress overrode US President Barack Obama’s veto of the potential bill. If passed, JASTA would allow US citizens to sue Saudi Arabia over the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

While many states have criticized JASTA for its potential of eroding the principle of sovereign immunity and changing international law, the lobbyist group Arab Project in Iraq sees their opportunity to ask for compensation from the United States over violations by the US forces following US invasion that saw the toppling of late President Saddam Hussein in 2003.

Citing how the Congress has given US civilians the opportunity to get compensation from “individuals” and “foreign nations” over their terrorist act in the United States, the group said Iraqis deserved the same treatment.

It urged for a full-fledged investigation over the killing of civilians targets, loss of properties and individuals who suffered torture and other mistreatment on the hand of US forces.
 

UAE

SENIOR MEMBER
Joined
Nov 28, 2014
Messages
1,641
Reactions
926 11
Country
USA
Location
United Arab Emirates
The unbearable idiocy of Congress




Congratulations, America! We now live in a political system in which, most of the time, only one person has to be the grown-up.




By Daniel W. Drezner September 30
Daniel W. Drezner is a professor of international politics at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and a regular contributor to PostEverything.

learned to bypass Congress on foreign policy, and how that has vested a disturbing amount of power into the office of the president. This has come through in recent discussions of just how much damage Donald Trump could wreak on the country and the world if elected.



A natural response to this is to call for Congress and President Obama to restore the balance of power between legislative and executive branches. Constitutionally, this sounds like a great idea, something that would forge a powerful consensus between small-government conservatives on the right and foreign policy doves on the left.

There’s just one teensy, tiny problem with this idea: It would give Congress greater responsibility over foreign policy, and Congress doesn’t handle foreign responsibility terribly well.

Senate overrides Obama's veto of Saudi 9/11 bill
Play Video1:21

The Senate overwhelmingly voted to reject President Obama's veto of legislation allowing relatives of the victims of the Sept. 11 attacks to sue the Saudi Arabian government on Sept. 28. (Video: Reuters / Photo: EPA)
For the latest example of legislative fecklessness, let’s turn to the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA), a bill that allows 9/11 families to sue the government of Saudi Arabia for any culpability it had in those terrorist attacks. Back in the spring I blogged about how, regardless of its emotional power, this bill wasn’t a very good idea. Since then, well-respected international lawyers have said the same thing in greater detail. The British government pointed out that the bill “could allow hostile states to take legal action against the U.S. and allies such as Britain.”

So it’s not surprising that Obama vetoed the bill, warning that JASTAwould, “among other things, remove sovereign immunity in U.S. courts from foreign governments that are not designated state sponsors of terrorism.” But for the first time in Obama’s presidency, Congress overrode his veto in bipartisan fashion, turning JASTA into law.

Hooray for congressional power! Sure, Arab governments did not react well, but overriding that veto must have felt damn good!

And now we get to the morning after, in which Congress realizes what it has done. From the Hill’s Jordain Carney:

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) opened the door Thursday to changing legislation that allows families of 9/11 victims to sue Saudi Arabia in U.S. court.

“I do think it’s worth further discussions, but it was certainly not something that was going to be fixed this week,” he told reporters when asked about a push by some senators to tweak the measure.

Across the Capitol, Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) agreed that Congress may need to “fix” the legislation, but said he wasn’t sure when that would happen.

Huh, that’s weird. Why fix something that was passed in the teeth of a presidential veto? Bloomberg News’s Steven Dennis and Billy House elaborate:

Both House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said that the measure could have unintended consequences — including the fact that it could leave U.S. soldiers open to retaliation by foreign governments …

Before the vote, senior administration officials warned lawmakers of this exact problem — that weakening the concept of sovereign immunity could backfire if foreign countries tried to do the same for the U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter sent House Armed Services Chairman Mac Thornberry of Texas a letter saying that could potentially expose Americans to lawsuits and “an intrusive discovery process” even if the U.S. is ultimately found not to be responsible for a particular event.

But Republicans said the White House didn’t make a forceful case, putting themselves in the awkward position of blaming the president for a bill they enacted into law over Obama’s veto.

So, basically, Congress’s excuse is that they didn’t realize that the president was seriously opposed to JASTA despite the fact that he vetoed it, publicly articulated why he vetoed it and personally warned congressional leadersabout the implications. And so a stupid bill that adversely affects American national interests is now law.

When it comes to Congress and foreign policy, here’s the spoiler alert: Members of the legislative branch want recognition without responsibility. They want the biggest, bulliest pulpit they can find, so they can pound their fists, decry all of America’s enemies and then pass legislation that makes them feel good. Then they want the president to be the grown-up in the room and shoulder all the responsibility and blame. God forbid they actually exert power over the executive branch, because that’s how policy own-goals like JASTA get turned into law. In essence, Congress wants to be the Lieutenant Weinberg of foreign policy.

This is not a new trait of Congress. A deeply flawed law like JASTA just brings the problem to the fore. This is why, over the years, Congress has voluntarily ceded swaths of authority in areas like foreign economic policy to the president. And this worked out mostly fine, because presidents have been willing to be the grown-up in the room and occasionally take actions that were politically unpopular but the right thing to do.

As of now, there is a — checks FiveThirtyEight — 1-in-3 chance that the next U.S. president will possess the emotional and intellectual maturity of a 7-year-old. If the president can’t handle a crisis, Congress might have to shoulder a greater burden of responsibility. The saga of JASTA is a stark reminder that Congress is woefully unprepared to be a responsible actor in foreign policy.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/post...-of-congress/?utm_term=.1c8d2ba15e8e#comments
 

Gasoline

MEMBER
Joined
Nov 28, 2014
Messages
958
Reactions
989 6
Country
Saudi Arabia
Location
Saudi Arabia
JASTA is exclusive and only to be used by the U.S lawmakers.:D Other states can establish their own laws to play the game.

It's funny how the people are looking for some excuses to steal each other |0|, but this isn't going to be good for U.S, too. Other countries can legitimize some laws and use them against U.S.
 
Top