Yesterday the military judge presiding over the 9/11 military commission trials concluded that a Defense Department order requiring him and other commission judges to move to Guantanamo in order to speed up the trials constituted an appearance of unlawful command influence stating “An objective, disinterested observer fully informed of all the facts and circumstances would harbor a significant doubt about the fairness of the proceeding.” (Order, p. 8). Really? Ya think? Someone could actually doubt the fairness of the military commission proceedings? I mean we have learned that the FBI has infiltrated defense teams, that they have put listening devices in attorney client meeting rooms, CIA interpreters have infiltrated the defense teams-- the sound was cut off in the courtroom during discussions between the judge and defense counsel--by unknown people- because something was said on the public record that some unknown individual far from the courtroom did not apparently think should be on the record--- and now there is finally a recognition that someone might think things are not fair? Well anyway, better late than never right?
The military Judge suspended the trial indefinitely pending rescission of
the order requiring the judges to move to the base. Dismissal of the charges could follow if the move order
isn’t rescinded and/or the prosecution doesn’t appeal within five days.
Read the entire amazing order here.
Could this be the final straw that shuts down the military commissions?
The new rule requiring the judges to move to gitmo was rescinded. Read more here.
I guess we have to wait for more interference and doubt about the fairness of the proceedings before the commission shuts down!