Judge Orders 5 Detainees To Be Released

By Justin Gardner | Related entries in Guantanamo Bay, Law, The War On Terrorism

I still can’t believe we justified holding people indefinitely without access to council or hope for trial. And the following case shows just how egregious that practice was since 4 out of the 5 men ordered released weren’t even “enemy combatants.”

From Wash Post:

For the first time, a federal judge ordered the release yesterday of detainees from the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay after evaluating and rejecting government allegations that five men were dangerous enemy combatants.

The government had alleged that the men planned to travel to Afghanistan to attack U.S. forces. But U.S. District Judge Richard J. Leon ruled that in a series of closed hearings in recent weeks, the Justice Department had not proved that five of the six Algerian detainees at the Cuban facility were enemy combatants under the government’s own definition.

Leon ordered them released “forthwith” and said the government should engage in diplomatic efforts to find them new homes. In an unusual moment, he also pleaded with Justice Department lawyers not to appeal his order, noting that the men have been imprisoned since shortly after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

By the way, 20 years from now what do you think we’ll say about Guantanamo Bay and the “war” on terrorism?


This entry was posted on Friday, November 21st, 2008 and is filed under Guantanamo Bay, Law, The War On Terrorism. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

5 Responses to “Judge Orders 5 Detainees To Be Released”

  1. kranky kritter Says:

    I think it’s a disgrace that we couldn’t come up with some sort of due process.I appreciate the difficulties inherent in doing this with suspects who if simply deported could well become combatants (possibly again…). But I don’t think it was worth sacrificing our ideals. The measure of the worth of our ideals is whether we stick by them when it’s hard, not when it’s easy,

    And I think 20 years from now we’ll be saying different things about Guantanamo than about the war on terror. No need to have the same opinion on both.

  2. Jimmy the Dhimmi Says:

    By the way, 20 years from now what do you think we’ll say about Guantanamo Bay and the “war” on terrorism?

    If there is a terrorist attack with WMD within the next 20 years, we would ask, “What were we thinking putting quotation marks around the word ‘war’!”

  3. George Mauer Says:

    Well, no jimmy, war has a definition, the current conflict does not fit it – you can’t have a war on a tactic yadda yadda yadda.

    I mean yes its just a linguistic formulation but the use of terms molds how our minds process information (see: Wittginstein and every linguist/psychologist ever) . In something like this we need to be very very careful.

  4. Jimmy the Dhimmi Says:

    You are right George. Thats why we should call it the “war of Islamic fascism” or the “war on jihad” or something like that. If fighting the spread of communism deserves the moniker of war, then this one does too.

  5. kranky kritter Says:

    I mean yes its just a linguistic formulation but the use of terms molds how our minds process information (see: Wittginstein and every linguist/psychologist ever) . In something like this we need to be very very careful.

    I have a degree in psychology. My graduate work also included more study in cognitive psychology. And I think this is really more of a boutique theoretical point than something that we need to be “very, very, careful about.”

    I am as concerned as anyone else about our various so-called wars on poverty(LBJ), drugs(Reagan), and terror(Bush), and so on. There is always the danger that they become an open-ended black hole sucking up resources without changing much of anything. They even lead to perverse results.

    But you’ll have a hard time convincing me that people are unable to see these efforts for what they are, warts and all, simply because of vocabulary choice.

    Maybe what we need is a war on hair-splitting. Not sure which side I’d end up on though. :-)

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