Monday, May 24, 2010

House Armed Service Committee Votes to Keep Gitmo Open and Investigate Lawyers Who Represent the Men at Gitmo

The final text of the House Armed Services Committee-passed National

Defense Authorization Act has been posted on the House Rules Committee's

website: The key pages seem to be pages 389-406.

The following provision in the NDAA 2011 (at pp.403-05) requiring the DOD Inspector General to investigate habeas counsel and commissions defense counsel for interfering with DOD operations:

(a) IN GENERAL.-The Inspector General of the Department of Defense shall conduct an investigation of the conduct and practices of lawyers described in subsection (c)...

(c) LAWYERS DESCRIBED.-The lawyers described in this subsection are military and non-military lawyers-(1) who represent individuals described in subsection (d) in proceedings relating to petitions for habeas corpus or in military commissions; and (2) for whom there is reasonable suspicion that they have engaged in conduct or practices described in subsection (a)(1).

Other notable provisions include:

- No release into the US

- No transfer to the US, until 120 days after comprehensive plan is submitted to Congress re: disposition of each detainee

- No transfer or resettlement to any foreign country, until 30 days after certification to Congress re: risks, etc.

- No transfer to any country with confirmed case of recidivism, unless waived by SECDEF

- No funds to construct or modify any facility in the US to house GTMO detainees

- Report on the merits, costs and risks of using any facility in the US to house GTMO detainees


Catching up...

A lot has happened over the past couple of weeks while I was at Guantanamo for a week and then taking some time to catch up...

First one of the best decisions to come out of the DC District Court was shot down by the DC Circuit paving the way for new Guantanamos around the world. This particular one is in Afghanistan... the decision can be found here and Scotusblog has more on the decision and its possible ramifications.

The Guantanamo testimonial project has a new interview. This one is of Alfred Souza who discusses the treatment of some of the most vulnerable men at Guantanamo, those with mental heath issues. Read the interview here. "In that interview, condecorated corpsman Souza tells about the dehumanization of the Guantanamo prisoners, and in particular those in the Psych Ward, where he found mentally-ill patients locked up in small places and punished with extreme deprivation for not complying with orders."

Also, be watching for more men to be leaving the prison. The Obama administration apparently has decided that it is ok to send men to countries where they have legitimate fears of prosecution.

And finally, Elena Kagan....I will have more to say later but basically I think she will be just fine. All of this yakking about her lack of judicial experience is just a distraction to me....I mean we have all seen what a great help all of that legal experience has done for people like Roberts and Alito.