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Ian McColgin
11-18-2010, 01:47 PM
Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani faced two hundred and eighty-five counts for the 1998 African embassy bombings. He was convicted of one.

From what Iíve read of the trial, I am inclined to see that he was pretty unimportant no matter how itís cut but one very important part is that our intelligence and military authorities squandered their ability to prosecute the case by holding Ghailani in black sites and torturing him to obtain doubtful misinformation.

To my view, it was a terrific result and time to get on with trials of the other detainees.

Andrew Craig-Bennett
11-18-2010, 02:59 PM
Yes.

There has been some consternation in English legal circles over the political denunciation of the decision in the Washington Post today.

Hot Air
11-18-2010, 03:14 PM
In other words it is a political disaster for the Obama plan to try the Gitmo detainees in civilian courts.

skuthorp
11-18-2010, 03:20 PM
In other words it is a political disaster for the Obama plan to try the Gitmo detainees in civilian courts.

OTOH it could be read as a disaster for the US policy that made torture a 'legal' method of gathering 'evidence' and a triumph for US justice. Of course he may have done much of what he was charged but the State by it's actions has neutered it's capacity to prosecute.

TomF
11-18-2010, 03:25 PM
No, Hot Air, it is a political disaster that Gitmo exists, and many of us are so grateful to the previous administration for creating this cesspool, and leaving it to subsequent administrations to address.

It is a travesty and an offence against the rule-of-law traditions that America ostensibly holds that these people have been held for years without trial. It is true that many (many of who wouldn't have voted Dem anyway) will view this result as a disaster. It is also true that many others will view this result as a vindication, as evidence that despite the sound and fury of the War On Terror, that America is returning in a serious way to its traditions regarding the rule of law.

Hot Air
11-18-2010, 03:30 PM
Gitmo works just fine. Ask the Obama administration.

skuthorp
11-18-2010, 03:31 PM
There's chance of course that Gitmo and it's inmates will still exist in a limbo when the GOP returns a President. Any thoughts on what they'd do with that? Or would it's continued existence be seen as an electoral advantage by some in the party?

And I do not see an easy way for Obama to wind the place up, you have probably done a very good job of creating a group of fanatical enemies in your own 'boosom' so to speak. Then there's the problem of where to send them if you just open the door, in many cases their own countries will not have them back and what country will accept them as 'refugees'? NK, Iran?

Peerie Maa
11-18-2010, 03:32 PM
In other words it is a political disaster for the Obama plan to try the Gitmo detainees in civilian courts.

Recognise these words?
"Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted"

TomF
11-18-2010, 03:37 PM
Gitmo works just fine. Ask the Obama administration.How do you feel about liberty, democracy, and the rule of law Hot Air?

Worth dying for, or worth subverting if they get inconvenient?

Hot Air
11-18-2010, 03:39 PM
I'm not interested in liberty for terrorists.

TomF
11-18-2010, 03:44 PM
I'm not interested in liberty for terrorists.Nor am I. But I am interested in fair trials for people accused of terrorism.

Are you in favour of fair trials?

Hot Air
11-18-2010, 04:02 PM
I am in favor of military tribunals for foreign nationals accused of terrorism.

Captain Blight
11-18-2010, 04:28 PM
Why military tribunals? I assume you're in favor of them because of the sub-rosa, swift and terrible punishment aspect they inspire. But.... Terrorism is not an act of war, it is a criminal conspiracy with a political edge. The military authority MUST remain subordinate to the civilian authority.

nw_noob
11-18-2010, 05:35 PM
I am in favor of military tribunals for foreign nationals accused of terrorism.

Fun fact of the day: military tribunals don't allow evidence collected under torture either. The cite is in this editorial (http://www.salon.com/news/terrorism/index.html?story=/opinion/greenwald/2010/11/18/trials).

Oh also, even if acquitted, the Obama administration may well have kept Ghailani in custody. {cite} (http://washingtonindependent.com/49886/johnson-opens-the-door-to-post-acquittal-detentions)

Andrew Craig-Bennett
11-18-2010, 05:49 PM
Recognise these words?
"Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted"

I'm afraid they don't, Nick.

Peerie Maa
11-18-2010, 05:52 PM
I'm afraid they don't, Nick.

Most don't need to answer. Hot Air either was too wound up to notice the question, or . . . .

htom
11-18-2010, 06:00 PM
This is what comes of comfounding the criminal law with the law of war. It's going to get worse before it gets better.

John E Hardiman
11-18-2010, 06:08 PM
Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani faced two hundred and eighty-five counts for the 1998 African embassy bombings. He was convicted of one.

From what I’ve read of the trial, I am inclined to see that he was pretty unimportant no matter how it’s cut but one very important part is that our intelligence and military authorities squandered their ability to prosecute the case by holding Ghailani in black sites and torturing him to obtain doubtful misinformation.

To my view, it was a terrific result and time to get on with trials of the other detainees.

I think it is important to point out that of the 284 charges he was aqquited of, 273 of them represent murder charges for the 273 people that died in the bombing he was convicted of. He was conviced of conspiracy to murder because he bought and provided the truck that the bomb was placed in. He knows who built and placed the bomb and is just as guilty even if he wasn't there.

riptide
11-18-2010, 06:11 PM
I'm afraid they don't, Nick.

They? Which "they" is that? Is this another example of your indiscriminate bashing of "Americans," or is there some other explanation?

If you want to criticize, how about starting with British courts and the British government ... you know, the folks who supposedly answer to you. Here's one example, from the Telegraph in February 2009 ...


Material in a CIA dossier on Mr Mohamed that was blacked out by High Court judges contained details of how British intelligence officers supplied information to his captors and contributed questions while he was brutally tortured, The Sunday Telegraph has learned.

Intelligence sources have revealed that spy chiefs put pressure on Mr Miliband to do nothing that would leave serving MI6 officers open to prosecution, or to jeopardise relations with the CIA, which is passing them "top notch" information on British terrorist suspects from its own informers in Britain.

Peerie Maa
11-18-2010, 06:12 PM
I think it is important to point out that of the 284 charges he was aqquited of, 273 of them represent murder charges for the 273 people that died in the bombing he was convicted of. He was conviced of conspiracy to murder because he bought and provided the truck that the bomb was placed in. He knows who built and placed the bomb and is just as guilty even if he wasn't there.

Dunno about your standards for conspiracy, but in English law conspiracy is a sort of catch all charge that is very hard to defend.

John E Hardiman
11-18-2010, 06:35 PM
Dunno about your standards for conspiracy, but in English law conspiracy is a sort of catch all charge that is very hard to defend.


Here is a legal definition, and it is important to understand that in the US, there must be an "Overt Act" proved.


An agreement between two or more persons to engage jointly in an unlawful or criminal act, or an act that is innocent in itself but becomes unlawful when done by the combination of actors.

Conspiracy is governed by statute in federal courts and most state courts. Before its Codification in state and federal statutes, the crime of conspiracy was simply an agreement to engage in an unlawful act with the intent to carry out the act. Federal statutes, and many state statutes, now require not only agreement and intent but also the commission of an Overt Act in furtherance of the agreement.

Conspiracy is a crime separate from the criminal act for which it is developed. For example, one who conspires with another to commit Burglary and in fact commits the burglary can be charged with both conspiracy to commit burglary and burglary.

Conspiracy is an inchoate, or preparatory, crime. It is similar to solicitation in that both crimes are committed by manifesting an intent to engage in a criminal act. It differs from solicitation in that conspiracy requires an agreement between two or more persons, whereas solicitation can be committed by one person alone.

Conspiracy also resembles attempt. However, attempt, like solicitation, can be committed by a single person. On another level, conspiracy requires less than attempt. A conspiracy may exist before a crime is actually attempted, whereas no attempt charge will succeed unless the requisite attempt is made.

The law seeks to punish conspiracy as a substantive crime separate from the intended crime because when two or more persons agree to commit a crime, the potential for criminal activity increases, and as a result, the danger to the public increases. Therefore, the very act of an agreement with criminal intent (along with an overt act, where required) is considered sufficiently dangerous to warrant charging conspiracy as an offense separate from the intended crime.

paul oman
11-18-2010, 07:21 PM
no matter your political leanings, it is bad for obama. Justice dept said months ago guilt was obvious. Lots of folks doubted non military court approach, and this just helps prove them right. Recall obama was going to close gittmo in one year... Lots of folks see it as o and 2 for the obama approach to terror control.
Bottom line, maybe a few happy liberals but vast vast numbers of the rest of the country kind of in shock and mad as hell. Too bad the election isn't next week!

only good news for obama is GM today, but that pales in comparison to this.

Keith Wilson
11-18-2010, 09:12 PM
no matter your political leanings, it is bad for Obama. Nonsense. Ghailani was convicted of a charge that has a minimum sentence of 20 years, no parole. He'll probably get a lot more than that. He was convicted in a normal court, with lawyers and the same rights as every other criminal defendant, and is going to get locked up for a long time. You have a problem with that?