Lending A Helping Hand?

Grind for March 24th, 2019
“There is no truth. There is only perception.”

Gustave Flaubert


The Headline

SCOTUS ruling makes it easier for Trump Administration to detain illegal immigrants with criminal records

The Grind

The Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld the US government’s authority to detain noncitizens awaiting deportation at any time following their release from local or state custody.

The lawsuit was brought by a group of noncitizens from Washington and California who cited language from the Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act – which states the US government can detain convicted illegals “when the alien is released” from prison.

As interpreted by the Trump Administration, this means the government can detain criminal illegals and place them into indefinite detention any time after they are released from prison – even years later.

Plaintiffs insisted immigrants would need to be detained within 24 hours of their release from prison; otherwise they should have the opportunity to argue for release as deportation proceedings move forward.

The Details

In a 5-4 ruling, the Supreme Court upheld the Trump Administration’s interpretation of the law. The court also upheld the government’s power to determine who is released and who is detained based on a person’s perceived danger to the surrounding community.

“An official’s crucial duties are better carried out late than never,” wrote Justice Samuel Alito, who said it wasn’t the court’s job to impose time limits for when an illegal alien can be detained.

The ruling is a major victory for President Trump ahead of the 2020 election and an embarrassment for the San Francisco-based 9th Circuit Court, which had sided with the plaintiffs.

In his dissenting opinion, Justice Stephen Breyer wrote: “I would have thought that Congress…did not intend to allow the government to apprehend persons years after their release from prison and hold them indefinitely without a bail hearing.”

Follow The Leader

The Headline

Germany will use Huawei in building its 5G network

The Grind

Despite pressure from the Trump Administration, Germany will allow Chinese company Huawei to participate in its 5G network.

“Our approach is not to simply exclude one company or one actor,” said German Chancellor Angela Merkel. “But rather we have requirements of the competitors for this 5G technology.”

The Trump Administration insists Huawei is a threat to national security and has urged allies to join the US in banning Huawei from its 5G network.

As US officials have pointed out, Chinese law requires tech companies to cooperate with intelligence officials – a partnership that could threaten all information traveling on 5G networks.

The Details

Huawei insists it does not spy on behalf of the Chinese government and says the US ban (which has not been signed) is the result of political motivations, not actual facts.

Critics in Germany argue that Washington is forcing its allies to pick a side and that security risks can be managed by close supervision.

“They say basically, ‘if you’re not with us, you’re against us,'” says Frank Pieke, director of the Mercator Institute for China Studies in Berlin. “It’s an indication that the current US administration is absolutely not interested in any form of discussion or dialogue. They basically want to ram their ideas and their assessments down the throats of everybody else in Europe.”

Perhaps more important for Germany is the fact that its existing networks depend heavily on Huawei’s affordable technology, and banning it could significantly delay the 5G rollout.

“The US needs to approach this not as a black and white issue,” says Andrea Kendall-Taylor, a former American intelligence officer. “The US should avoid generating more resentment in already fraught relations with the Europeans. To manage the China challenge we will need the Europeans on our side, so we need to work together.”

In the meantime, Huawei has opened up a lab in Bonn, Germany where anyone can come in and inspect its products.

“The idea of this lab is that the responsible IT security authority of Germany but also other interested parties like independent auditors or our customers could go to that lab,” says Huawei spokesperson Patrick Berger. “And, for example, verify our source does and see that there are no malicious things in our codes.”

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