Avoid this rag tomorrow - an article where a 9 year old boy questions why his father is in Quantanamo Bay?
Answer - (Easy) - Maybe because he's an AQ related terrorist !
Answer - (Easy) - Maybe because he's an AQ related terrorist !
http://news.independent.co.uk/uk/legal/article2137687.eceBy Ben Russell, Political Correspondent
Published: 09 January 2007
Ten-year-old Anas el-Banna will walk to the door of Number 10 Downing Street this week to ask for an answer to the question he has been trying to have answered for four years: Why can't my Dad come home?
His father, Jamil, is one of eight British residents languishing among the almost 400 inmates at the American base at Guantanamo Bay, which opened five years ago to the day this Thursday - the day of Anas's protest.
Mr Banna, was taken to Guantanamo Bay four years ago after being seized in Gambia along with fellow detainee Bisher al-Rawi. He was accused of having a suspicious device in his luggage. It turned out to be a battery charger. No charges have been made.
He suffers from severe diabetes, but his lawyers say he has not been offered medication and has been denied the food he needs. His eyesight is now failing.
I struggle, when I read articles like the one below, to see any evidence that the 'strategy' of the coalition against Al Qaeda embraces the first of the two highlighted B'liar statements.Tony B'liar said:We will not win the battle against global extremism unless we win it at the level of values as much as that of force. We can win only by showing that our values are stronger, better, and more just than the alternative. That also means showing the world that we are evenhanded and fair in our application of those values. We will never get real support for the tough actions that may well be essential to safeguarding our way of life unless we also attack global poverty, environmental degradation, and injustice with equal vigor.
In Full HEREFor GuantÃ¡namo Review Boards, Limits Abound
By TIM GOLDEN
New York Times December 31, 2006
GUANTÃNAMO BAY, Cuba â At one end of a converted trailer in the American military detention center here, a graying Pakistani businessman sat shackled before a review board of uniformed officers, pleading for his freedom.
The prisoner had seen just a brief summary of what officials said was a thick dossier of intelligence linking him to Al Qaeda. He had not seen his own legal papers since they were taken away in an unrelated investigation. He has lawyers working on his behalf in Washington, London and Pakistan, but here his only assistance came from an Army lieutenant colonel, who stumbled as he read the prisonerâs handwritten statement.
As the hearing concluded, the detainee, who cannot be identified publicly under military rules, had a question. He is a citizen of Pakistan, he noted. He was arrested on a business trip to Thailand. On what authority or charges was he even being held?
âThat question,â a Marine colonel presiding over the panel answered, âis outside the limits of what this board is permitted to consider.â
Under a law passed by Congress and signed by President Bush in October, this double-wide trailer may be as close to a courtroom as most GuantÃ¡namo prisoners ever get. The law prohibits them from challenging their detention or treatment by writs of habeas corpus in the federal courts. Instead, they may only petition a single federal appeals court to examine whether the review boards followed the militaryâs own procedures in reviewing their status as âenemy combatants.â
But an examination of the GuantÃ¡namo review boards by The New York Times suggests that they have often fallen short, not only as a source of due process for the hundreds of men held here, but also as a forum to resolve questions about what the detainees have done and the threats they may pose.
Some limitations have long been evident. The prisoners have no right to a lawyer, or to see classified evidence, or even to know the identity of their accusers. What has been less visible, however, is what many officials describe as a continuing shortage of information about many detainees, including some who have been held on sketchy or disputed intelligence.
Behind the hearings that journalists are allowed to observe is a system that has at times been as long on government infighting and diplomatic maneuvering as it has been short on hard evidence. The result, current and former officials acknowledged, is that some detainees have been held for years on less compelling information, while a growing number of others for whom there was thought to be stronger evidence of militant activities have been released under secret arrangements between Washington and their home governments.
Military officials emphasize that the boards are an administrative forum and were never intended to replicate judicial standards of fairness. But they say the hearings offer prisoners a viable opportunity to rebut the governmentâs evidence.
. . . . .
Although a growing number of lawyers have begun to conduct their own investigations into accusations against their clients, a former military intelligence officer who has presided over dozens of review boards was dismissive of those contributions.
âAs far as what the habeas lawyers have to say, for the most part it wouldnât factor in because they have made themselves not credible,â said the officer, a Marine colonel who suggested that the lawyers took detaineesâ claims of innocence at face value.
The lawyers respond that the obstacles to their input in the process raise questions about the militaryâs desire to learn everything it can about the detainees. More than a week after the hearing for the Pakistani businessman accused of ties to Al Qaeda, a Washington lawyer who had been trying to help him told a reporter that he had not even known the session had taken place.
âThere is no hint of any kind of due process in this,â said the lawyer, Gaillard T. Hunt. âHeâs got no right to an investigation. But substantively, it really doesnât matter, because they can always just say they have this classified information that he canât see.â
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