The Judge Advoctes Association has taken this position on Section 1037 of House Bill 5136, which the No Man previously discussed here:

Section 1037 of H.R. 5136, National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011 charges the Inspector General of the Department of Defense with conducting an investigation of conduct and practices of lawyers, military and civilian, who are representing individuals the subject of either habeas corpus actions or military commissions.

The Judge Advocates Association opposes this legislation. The U.S. Department of Justice has initiated and is continuing to conduct an investigation into matters which are the subject of this proposed legislation. The Department of Justice is the agency with primary jurisdiction in these matters. The Judge Advocates Association believes it unwise to require another agency to conduct an investigation while the Department of Justice has an open criminal investigation.

Any concerns about ethical conduct of judge advocates are properly the responsibility of the appropriate military department Judge Advocate General or the Staff Judge Advocate to the Commandant of the Marine Corps.

[Disclosure:  while I’m a member of the JAA’s board, I abstained from voting on this measure due to my previous duty as the military commission system’s chief defense counsel.]

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