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Martial Law Definition, Meaning and Effects: What Would Happen If Martial Law Were Enacted in the U.S.?

( [email protected] ) Jul 18, 2016 01:43 AM EDT
After a coup attempt in Turkey, some feared that the incident might also happen in the United States. Independent reported the attempted military takeover in Istanbul and Ankara caused chaos and many were killed.  Now, here's everything you need to know about Martial Law definition, meaning and effects.
Turkish military discuss with people at the Taksim Square in Istanbul, Turkey, July 16, 2016. REUTERS/Murad Seze Reuters

After a coup attempt in Turkey, some feared that the incident might also happen in the United States. Independent reported the attempted military takeover in Istanbul and Ankara caused chaos and many were killed. Now, here's everything you need to know about Martial Law definition, meaning and effects.

When Martial Law is declared in the United States, the first that you need to know is that the U.S. Constitution would be "suspended." Meaning, all of the people would suddenly have no rights at all. There would be no freedom of the press, no freedom of speech, no freedom of assembly and armed forces can arrest citizens at any time for any reason whatsoever.

Under Martial Law, the military would take over the government. Expect there would be troops in the streets, a curfew would certainly be imposed, and checkpoints would be set up around the country.

The policy of Martial has its origins in the American Civil War, according to History.com. In July 1861, Congress ratified most of the martial measures, giving the Union military power to try and arrest citizens.

Martial Law has never been declared in the United States. However, some feared the widespread social of unrest, crime, and violence would lead to chaos. In addition, the police have become more and more militarized in recent years, with local officers being equipped with tear gas and military-grade riot shields.

In the past few months, there are rumors around the internet that claimed President Barack Obama will declare military takeover in the country. The rumors started after the President said "Americans would be better living under martial law" in an interview with Washington Post. The publication downplayed the statement, saying the president did not say that.

We tried to look in the archives of the Washington Post to know if President Obama made any Martial Law-related statements during his term, but we did not found any.

Meanwhile, in the aftermath of coup attempt in Turkey, the Guardian reported officials arrested more than 2,800 army members and detained 2,745 judges and prosecutors.

President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, pointed Fethullah Gülen as the man behind the coup attempt. Gülen is an exiled cleric living in Pennsylvania. Erdogan also demanded Obama to arrest or deport the cleric.

For the part of Gülen, he denied the conspiracy accusations against him in an interview. He added that Erdoğan could have staged the coup.

Tags : Martial Law, Martial law facts, President Obama, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, turkey, United States, Coup attempt