Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Obama's First Military Commissions Prosecutes a Child Soldier

Khadr is accused of killing a US soldier after throwing a grenade at the end of a four-hour US bombardment of an al-Qaeda compound in the eastern Afghan city of Khost.

His lawyers deny that he threw the grenade and contend that the prosecution is relying on confessions extracted following abuse. They argue that his statements to military interrogators were illegally obtained through torture and had asked a US war crimes court to throw them out.

Jury Selection Began on Tuesday aljazeera.net here with related articles
(Khadr trial opens at Guantanamo Bay‎ - poste 1 hour after publication)

A US military judge has ruled that the confessions of Omar Khadr, a Canadian citizen charged with terrorism and murder, can be used as evidence in his trial ...
Also at Aljazeera.net (with many related articles)

Barack Obama vs. Omar Khadr Op Ed by Chris Selley - The National Post Canada
August 10, 2010 – 1:36 pm

Guess who’s going to trial
At long last, Omar Khadr’s kangaroo commission begins.

Reacting to yesterday’s decision to hear testimony against Mr. Khadr that no civilized society would ever hear against one of its own citizens, The Globe and Mail‘s editorialists observe the “painful irony that the 15-year-old who was coerced by his family to be a terrorist could then be coerced by a democratic state to give evidence against himself.” Yup. And it’s amazing, as Mr. Khadr’s Pentagon lawyer observed this week, that the first of President Barack Obama’s military commissions will prosecute someone who was 15 when he allegedly committed his crimes.

Sooner or later, the National Post‘s editorialists correctly observe, Mr. Khadr must come home. In the unlikely event he’s acquitted, they argue, “he must be allowed to return as a free man” — because the government can’t very well profess confidence in the military commissions and then ignore the verdict, can it? (Well, of course it can. It probably would. But it shouldn’t.) And if he’s found guilty, the Post believes, the government must finally toss this former child soldier a bone and allow him to serve his sentence in Canada.

Sun Media’s Ezra Levant continues to insist Mr. Khadr wasn’t “a naive kid, just running with the wrong crowd, an innocent lamb” — and continues to insist, therefore, that you should have no sympathy for him at all. And that, kids, is what you call a straw-man argument. We know it’s utterly foreign to someone like Levant, who seems incapable of supporting or opposing any idea without exalting or maligning the person espousing it, but there are great numbers of Canadians who haven’t lost a moment’s sleep about Mr. Khadr himself, but worry nonetheless about the obligations to him that Canada is willfully ignoring.

Indeed, it never ceases to amaze us that people like Levant, who are generally skeptical of government, can applaud so lustily when government screws over a fellow citizen. Just because you aren’t skulking around with Taliban jihadis in the Afghan hellscape doesn’t mean you won’t be the government’s next victim. Ask Robert Dziekanski, or the residents of Caledonia, Ont., or that couple who were arrested in Toronto for having dinner at The Keg.

Read more: here or GO here

Find more at oneheartforpeace dot blogspot dot com for August 10, 2010

1 comment:

  1. Admission of threat of rape to extract info:

    Maher Arar's Op Ed on Khadr at Huff Post

    (I have commented to this in light of Dr. Aafia Siddiqui's "Civilian" trial which was anything but civil) on Huff Post under that item by Arar which I expect will be approved soon)