If you are reading this, you are no doubt, like me, a military justice junky. You will no doubt also, like me, be thrilled to know that Akhil Amar will be devoting a chapter in his upcoming book to a military justice topic. In a recent article in the Syracuse Law Review, Professor Amar discusses his upcoming book, America’s Unwritten Constitution: Between the Lines and Beyond the Text. See Akhil Reed Amar, America’s Constitution, Written and Unwritten, 57 Syracuse L. Rev. 267, 268 (2007). Chapter 3 will include an analysis of “whether certain narrow but unenumerated limitations on rights” may exist. Id. at 272. “For instance,” Professor Amar notes, “courts-martial do not provide regular jury trials, and there is no explicit exception for such courts in the Constitution’s general promise of jury trials for criminal defendants. Nevertheless, the Constitution has in practice been read to exempt such courts from the jury trial right.” Id. It should be fascinating to see what Professor Amar makes of this notion, which has been extensively debated by military justice practitioners and scholars for at least the last 50 years.
Maybe we can offer Professor Amar’s book as a prize in some future CAAFlog contest.