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FROM THIS EPISODE

When George Bush signs the Military Commissions Act, will the US President have the "privilege of kings?"  Conservative scholars are among those saying the new law will violate the Constitution and overturn legal principles that date to the Middle Ages. We hear both sides. Plus, US response to North Korea's announcement of its first nuclear weapon's test, and the latest on the September 11 blame-game between the CIA and the White House.

Producers:
Dan Konecky
Karen Radziner
Katie Cooper

Making News North Korea Threatens Nuclear Test 6 MIN, 4 SEC

North Korea announced today it will conduct its first test of a nuclear weapon.  The US calls that "provocative" and an "unacceptable threat" to world peace.

Guests:
Daniel Pinkston, Korea specialist at the Center for Nonproliferation Studies
Selig Harrison, Center for International Policy

Reporter's Notebook Records Show CIA Told Rice of Imminent Terror Threat 6 MIN, 45 SEC

In his latest book, State of Denial, Bob Woodward reports that former CIA Director George Tenet and his aide, Cofer Black, gave Condoleezza Rice their "starkest warning" that al Quaeda had plans to attack the US in a meeting held two months before September 11. Woodward writes they felt that Rice, then National Security Advisor, gave them "the brush off." While Rice acknowledges "a steady stream of quite alarmist reports about possible attacks," she denies brushing off Tenet.

Guests:
Mark Hosenball, Investigative Correspondent for Newsweek

Main Topic New Legislation Suspends Habeas Corpus for Terror Detainees 36 MIN, 22 SEC

After a White House compromise with Republican Senators McCain, Warner and Graham last week, Congress passed the Military Commissions Act.  With a few exceptions, the final votes in the Senate and Congress went along party lines.  President Bush's signing ceremony for the legislation, which sets the rules for the treatment of terrorist suspects, is expected to be a high-profile political moment. But conservative legal scholars are among those contending that the new law will violate the Constitution and pave the way for a police state. The writ of habeas corpus was designed to prevent kings from letting their enemies die in prison without trial.  Will the new law give the President that kind of power?  Will it allow torture under another name or does it protect traditional safeguards while making Americans safer from a new kind of danger?

Guests:
Gail Russell Chaddock, Christian Science Monitor (@RussellChaddock)
Bruce Fein, attorney
Scott Silliman, Director of the Center for Law, Ethics and National Security at Duke University

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