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UNLAWFUL COMBATANT

 
 
Setanta
 
Reply Mon 4 Jun, 2007 02:23 pm
Omar Khadr, a Canadian citizen who was taken into custody in Afghanistan in 2002, had the case against him dismissed at the base at Guantanamo Bay today:

[url=http://www.guardian.co.uk/guantanamo/story/0,,2095294,00.html][b]The [i]Guardian Unlimited[/i][/b][/url] wrote:
The US military's system of tribunals at Guantánamo Bay was thrown into chaos today after a military judge threw out all charges against a young Canadian detainee.

One senior military official said the ruling in the case of Omar Khadr could have a "huge impact" on the controversial tribunals at the US navy's detention centre in Cuba, the Associated Press reported.

The judge said Mr Khadr - who was captured in Afghanistan as a suspected Taliban fighter in 2002 when he was aged 15 - did not meet the definition of those subject to trial under the new laws in effect at the tribunals.

Army Colonel Peter Brownback, the tribunal judge, said a military review board had labelled Mr Khadr an "enemy combatant" during a 2004 hearing in Guantánamo.

However, the Military Commissions Act adopted by the US Congress in 2006 said only "unlawful enemy combatants" could be tried in the Guantánamo tribunals.


Something tells me we'll hear a good deal of howling and righteous indignation from the right on this one.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 2 • Views: 5,412 • Replies: 123
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FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Mon 4 Jun, 2007 02:26 pm
Please tell me that somewhere in this mess we will make the determination that children (15 for chrissakes!) cannot be labelled enemy comabatants, illegal or otherwise.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Mon 4 Jun, 2007 02:29 pm
I can't tell you that. But this is definitely a screw-up on the part of whomever in the military thought he could get Khadr tried as a terrorist. He was accused of murdering an American medic. But if he is considered a lawful combatant, fighting for the Taliban (and for better or worse, that was the government of Afghanistan at the time), then he is not subject to the authority of the tribunal at Guantanamo, and he is subject to treatment as prescribed by the Geneva conventions. There's going to be a good deal of wailing and gnashing of teeth among those who were responsible for classifying the prisoners there.
0 Replies
 
parados
 
  1  
Reply Mon 4 Jun, 2007 05:14 pm
One thing in the MSNBC story...
Quote:


http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/19028561/

Thank God Bush has a plan for Iraq...
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Mon 4 Jun, 2007 05:16 pm
Brilliant, isn't it.
0 Replies
 
FreeDuck
 
  1  
Reply Mon 4 Jun, 2007 08:23 pm
Justice? Let's just make it up as we go.
0 Replies
 
parados
 
  1  
Reply Mon 4 Jun, 2007 08:38 pm
The second military judge threw that case out too.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/19028561/

Quote:
In back-to-back arraignments for Canadian Omar Khadr and Salim Ahmed Hamdan, of Yemen, the U.S. military's cases against the alleged al-Qaida figures dissolved because, the two judges said, the government had failed to establish jurisdiction.

0 Replies
 
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Mon 4 Jun, 2007 10:06 pm
bookmarking
0 Replies
 
OGIONIK
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Jun, 2007 01:46 am
FreeDuck wrote:
Justice? Let's just make it up as we go.


thats the most hilarious but true thing ever said in this forum.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Jun, 2007 07:01 am
There was an interesting discussion, Parados, today on CBC about the fact that the prosecution wants to appeal, but has no court to which to appeal. It was also pointed out that there are still more than 300 people there, but that the government has said that it intends to prosecute fewer than 100. Why are the rest being held? Because the government would find it embarrassing to explain why they are releasing hundreds of prisoners suddenly, without any criminal procedure, after holding them for five years.
0 Replies
 
Bi-Polar Bear
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Jun, 2007 07:16 am
didn't I read somewhere a few weeks back set that they were having trouble finding places to send prisoners being released and that their own countries were balking at taking them back? Or did I dream that?

please bring me up to speed...
0 Replies
 
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Jun, 2007 07:16 am
I think there's something like 380 still there, Setanta. The main reason seems to be that no one has been interested in getting them out. Their own countries aren't interested & it sounds like many of them have no legal representation, either. Limbo.
0 Replies
 
anton
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Jun, 2007 07:42 am
According to the news we get, the decision makers at Guantanamo don't allow visits for legal advisors.
Tonight George Bush is somewhere in Europe acting to spread democracy throughout the world, perhaps he should start in Guantanamo Bay; sadly I don't think he knows the meaning of democracy.
0 Replies
 
msolga
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Jun, 2007 07:53 am
anton

David Hicks & Omar Khadr both had lawyers. In David Hicks's case they were respresenting him before the Australian government showed any interest in his situation.
0 Replies
 
oralloy
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Jun, 2007 08:10 am
FreeDuck wrote:
Please tell me that somewhere in this mess we will make the determination that children (15 for chrissakes!) cannot be labelled enemy comabatants, illegal or otherwise.


No, no one is going to make such a determination.
0 Replies
 
oralloy
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Jun, 2007 08:10 am
Setanta wrote:
I can't tell you that. But this is definitely a screw-up on the part of whomever in the military thought he could get Khadr tried as a terrorist. He was accused of murdering an American medic. But if he is considered a lawful combatant, fighting for the Taliban (and for better or worse, that was the government of Afghanistan at the time), then he is not subject to the authority of the tribunal at Guantanamo, and he is subject to treatment as prescribed by the Geneva conventions. There's going to be a good deal of wailing and gnashing of teeth among those who were responsible for classifying the prisoners there.


It seems a minor thing to set up some commissions to determine that these guys were unlawful combatants, then the tribunals will be right back on track.
0 Replies
 
oralloy
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Jun, 2007 08:23 am
Setanta wrote:
It was also pointed out that there are still more than 300 people there, but that the government has said that it intends to prosecute fewer than 100. Why are the rest being held? Because the government would find it embarrassing to explain why they are releasing hundreds of prisoners suddenly, without any criminal procedure, after holding them for five years.


I'd say they were still being held because they are captured enemy soldiers and the war hasn't ended.

We'll let them out when al-Qa'ida disbands and surrenders to us.
0 Replies
 
old europe
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Jun, 2007 08:50 am
oralloy wrote:
It seems a minor thing to set up some commissions to determine that these guys were unlawful combatants, then the tribunals will be right back on track.


That has been said before, right?

FreeDuck wrote:
Justice? Let's just make it up as we go.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Jun, 2007 08:51 am
It is only an assumption on your part that those being held are or were members of al Qaeda--in fact, the most plausible assumption is either that they were fighting for the Taliban, then the government of Afghanistan, or that they were turned in by neighbors with a grudge for the considerable bounties which were being offered by the U. S. military.

As usual, your argument is only plausible to the extent that you can control definitions. You remind me of those who holler about "terrorists" being held at Guantanamo. How does anyone know they are terrorists, if they've never had a hearing before a competent tribunal, as required by the Geneva Convention?
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Tue 5 Jun, 2007 08:57 am
Bi-Polar Bear wrote:
didn't I read somewhere a few weeks back set that they were having trouble finding places to send prisoners being released and that their own countries were balking at taking them back? Or did I dream that?

please bring me up to speed...


What Miss Olga said:

msolga wrote:
I think there's something like 380 still there, Setanta. The main reason seems to be that no one has been interested in getting them out. Their own countries aren't interested & it sounds like many of them have no legal representation, either. Limbo.


A great many were "sold" to U.S. troops for the bounty--they may well have no where to go back to. Most were Afghans or Pakistanis (a lot of the fighting was in tribal areas which neither the Afghans nor the Pakistanis ever have or ever have tried, to control), very poor, and the current governments in Pakistan and Afghanistan are less than enchanted with the idea of having them back.

Even if they were just sold for the bounty, and never had been members of either the Taliban or al Qaeda, it is not unreasonable to assume that after five years of close confinement, they would now be willing to fight for the Taliban or al Qaeda. Marvelous example of self-fulfilling prophecy here.
0 Replies
 
 

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