Saturday, May 31, 2008

Now here is a surprise!

Former Guantanamo prosecutor says DOD punished him for Hamdan testimony
Deirdre Jurand at 10:19 AM ET

Photo source or description
[JURIST] The former chief prosecutor at Guantanamo Bay alleges that the US Department of Defense (DOD) [official website] retaliated against him for giving testimony [JURIST report] at the pre-trial hearing of detainee Salim Ahmed Hamdan [DOD materials; JURIST news archive] which reflected poorly on the DOD. In an email released Wednesday, Air Force Col. Morris Davis [official profile, PDF] wrote that Pentagon officials denied him a medal for his two years of work on Guantanamo cases for failure to "serve honorably", a justification he says is politically motivated. He also said that he will not cooperate in any future cases and that he fears further punishment by the DOD before his official retirement later this year. The Washington Post has more.

Davis resigned [JURIST report; JURIST op-ed] from his position at Guantanamo Bay in October 2007, saying that politics were interfering with the prosecutions. He testified at Hamdan's pre-trial hearing that DOD officials had pressured him to bring charges against detainees and had told him that there could be no acquittals. Davis also stated that the legal adviser to the Convening Authority [official backgrounder] for Military Commissions at Guantanamo Bay, US Air Force Brig. Gen. Thomas W. Hartmann [official profile], questioned the need for open trials [JURIST report] and pressured him to move forward with military commissions quickly "before the election." A judge disqualified Hartmann from a Guantanamo trial earlier this month, and Hartmann's objectivity has since been questioned [JURIST reports].

1 comment:

the talking dog said...

Part of me is tempted to say "couldn't happen to a nicer guy"... but the fact is, what Moe did took a not-so-small-degree of courage. He could have refused to talk about any of this, or been a good little boy and done what Hartmann told him, but he didn't do that. Whatever his motivation, and indeed, whatever his past action, he actually stood up and did the right thing here, for which I at least am willing to give him props. He refused to go along with coerced evidence, or a top-down prosecution regime. Just as some of the GTMO judges have shown fascinating independent streaks.

So now Moe can join former Lt Cmdr Swift and doubtless others in the "GTMO ate my career" club.

Just another sideshow in America's Own Show Trials(TM), but the uniformed military has, to its credit, been one of the few istruments of our government or society that has consistently done some degree of pushing back against the excesses of our current Imperial regime.