Majority Support Military Tribunals For Terrorists

Most Americans believe suspected terrorists should be tried by military tribunals rather than in U.S. courts, as the first such trial began this week at the Guantanamo Naval Base in Cuba.

Seventy-one percent (71%) say the suspects should not be given the rights U.S. citizens have in court, while only 18% think they should, according to a new Rasmussen Reports national survey.

While some politicians, foreign officials and non-government groups like Amnesty International argue that the Bush administration is acting outside of the law in its treatment of these terrorist suspects, just 30% of Americans believe they should have access to U.S. courts, as opposed to 54% who favor the special military trials.

Nearly six out of 10 Americans (59%) also say the special prison camp for terrorists at Guantanamo, where the United States now detains 280 inmates, should not be closed. Twenty-six percent (26%) believe it should be.

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