Guantánamo Trials End In Unequivocal Defeat For Bushites Two cases tossed out, but the implications are much broader for Military tribunals. Does this mean and reflect strongly upon a typical incompetence and slovenly work by those who drafted the law? We have seen a great deal of unprofessional and less than competent behavior these last five or six years. Are these faux-paux's a result of hiring people from third rate law schools. We will know soon enough. Guantánamo Trials End In Defeat Unequivocal For Bushites According to sources in several newspapers and online, Military Judges dismissed all charges against a young man imprisoned since age 15 and against another who was the chauffeur of Osama bin Ladin. Successive arraignments for the Omar Khadr, a Canadian, and Salim Ahmed Hamdan, from Yemen, the American military's cases against these two alleged al-Qaida "members" were summarily tossed out because, the judges said, the Government were unable establish jurisdiction in the cases. Colonel Peter Brownback dismissed all charges against Mr Khadr on technical grounds. These dismissals carry grave implications against the Bush administration's system of military tribunals, mainly because "failure to establish jurisdiction may well apply to all the prisoners held at Guantánamo, as many as 385 people. The dismissal crushes the administration's long held insistence that the use of military tribunals following long term detention while investigations are underway will prove the result of good and proper legal practice, and that guilty prisoners were done no disservice. Colonel Brownback reported that the Pentagon had designated a Canadian citizen Mr Khadr, who was facing charges of terrorism and murder, was an "enemy combatant", but not an "unlawful enemy combatant", which term Congress used in 2006 to authorize the tribunals. The decision implies, strongly that the Pentagon's was incorrect and that the tribunal did not have proper jurisdiction to try Mr Khadr. Col Brownback told the court, "A person has a right to be tried only by a court that has jurisdiction over him!" Mr Salim Ahmed Hamdan, from Yemen, who was accused of being Bin Laden's chauffeur and bodyguard, had his case deemed yesterday as, "... not subject to this commission" under legislation passed by Congress and signed by President George Bush last year, according to Navy Captain Keith Allred. The defense attorneys polemic was that the Military Commissions Act was rewritten to lay foundation for military trials because the US Supreme Court rejected the previous system in 2006, as fully problematic and that it has been shown to be inoperable. In 2006, Mr Salim Ahmed Hamdan won a Supreme Court challenge which virtually slashed open the efficacy of the first Guantánamo tribunal system. Lawyers said that the rulings made yesterday, strongly intimated that that none of the 385 detainees at Guantánamo, most of whom have been held for more than five years without charge, (in violation of The Bill Of Rights, and Habeas Corpus), may be tried before the tribunals as they also were designated as "unlawful enemy combatants," but they are merely "Enemy Combatants.
Marine Corps Colonel Dwight Sullivan, lead military defense attorney, said, "The system right now should just stop.... The commission is an experiment that failed and we don't need any more evidence that it is a failure." The Canadian, Mr. Omar Khadr's, lawyers also scalded the government, "This is a shambles," Kristine Huskey, who was a member of Mr Khadr's defense until last week when he fired all of his American lawyers. "It's another example of how everything has been so ad hoc. The Military Commissions Act was just not done thoughtfully." However, since Col Brownback threw out the charges "without prejudice," the Pentagon could issue new charges against him, so Mr Khadr not free. The trial did more than merely destroy the premise of the government it displays carelessness and the apparent incompetence with which Congress brought forth the legislation which underwrote the tribunals following the Supreme Court's tossing the earlier Tribunal's constructs. Less than two month's earlier, David Hicks, the first Guantánamo detainee charged, settled a plea bargain thereby avoiding trial. Unfortunately for the 385 detainees, the last word is not yet in. They could all be charged on some other matters, but that is another gamble and one wonders when/if the dunderheaded congress can get anything right. Looking at the proceedings from the point of view of those in the administration who claim to be "Christians," I would say, perhaps this is a sign from God that they are not on His "A" List, anymore and it is doubtful that they ever were. God is often subtle in His ironies, but not so this time.