It's been a long week for the Powerline boys, and it's only Wednesday! Scooter faces some serious jail time, of course, but now the two only Guantanamo detainees to actually have been charged under the Military Commission Act have had the charges against them dismissed. Paul says:
Today, a U.S. military judge dismissed charges against Omar Khadr, a Canadian detainee [and fifteen at the time of the incident] accused of throwing a grenade in Afghanistan which killed U.S. Army Sgt. Christopher Speer. The judge dismissed the charges because Khadr was classified as an "enemy combatant," whereas the law enabling the military trials applied to "alien unlawful enemy combatants." The same defect apparently applies to all of the other detainees subject to military trials.
I haven't read the decision yet, but John Armor at the ACRU blog says the charges were dismissed without prejudice, and that the government need only change the labels on the prisoners as appropriate in order to proceed with this trial and all the others.
Armor also says that the story is already being misreported around the world as a meaningful setback for the U.S. government. That wouldn't be much of a surprise.
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Posted by Paul at 10:21 PM
Paul does not mention that the charges were also dismissed against Salim Hamdan. But Paul says not to worry: all that is required is a "relabeling" of the detainees. Why of course! It's so simple! Why didn't Spot think of that? Put a label on them and off to the concentration camp they go!
Spotty, they're there anyway.
Oh, right. But still. The "label" may be a silly little detail in the repressive little aquarium that Paul swims in, but not, thankfully, everywhere:
Paul ends his whimper with a quivering chin, blubbering how misunderstood the U.S. is. Boo hoo.
Tags: military commissions, Salim Hamdan