With the passage of H.R. 1540, the “National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012" the mere suspicion, valid or not, of a person being a "terrorist" or supporting "terrorism" can result in indefinite military detention. Indefinite definition, of course, as recent American military history has shown, will enable all means of abuse including the murder of those detained.
The notion of terrorism is extremely broad and is getting broader as lobbyists for corporate interests persuade their paid Congressmen to include all forms of dissent that might have economic consequences under the definition of terrorism. Terrorism is what the government or military says it is on any given day, as politically convenient. For example, under the United States Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act,
Now with H.R. 1540 these four individuals would not have to be charged at all, merely detained somewhere in the American Gulag around the world.In 2009, four individuals were indicted under the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act for peacefully protesting on public property outside the homes of professors conducting research involving animal testing. While the charges were eventually dismissed, the defendants were placed under house arrest for almost a year. The AETA effectively granted law enforcement officers the authority to obstruct activism and free expression merely by deciding to pursue the criminal investigation.
Arguably, any act of dissent or supporting an act of dissent (perhaps making a contribution to PETA or Wikileaks, for example, will be deemed supporting terrorism) now in the United States can be deemed "terrorism" and those involved detained indefinitely.
That being said should those brave few left in the US who believe in freedom, liberty, and the rule of law begin developing a new Underground Railroad to help those targeted by the United States get to free countries like Canada and Mexico, and then perhaps to other countries that do still operate under the rule of law. I'm thinking of a clandestine system much like that operated behind the Iron Curtain in East Germany or in WWII to get Jews to safety.
Being in a free country won't guarantee protection of anyone deemed a terrorist by the US military because H.R. 1540 allows the US military to send assassins to any country and detain or kill anyone, but it may help.
Given that the US is no longer operating under the rule of law, it is likely that the courts in countries like Canada will look favorably on granting political refugee status to people at risk of being indefinitely detained by the US on mere suspicion. In the US it seems it would be prudent to consider anyone who dissents or is an activist to be "at risk".
But first, of course, people need to get to a safe country that recognizes human rights and the rule of law. For that a new Underground Railway may be needed.