Skip to content

Category Archives: Guantanamo

GAO: Defense Department Violated Law In Bergdahl-GTMO Detainee Swap

By
Thursday, August 21, 2014 at 4:05 PM

So concludes this report from the Government Accountability Office, which apparently was written in response to a request by various Senators.  The document opens: This responds to your June 13, 2014, request for our opinion on whether the Department of Defense (DOD) incurred obligations in violation of section 8111 of the Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2014 . . .
Read more »

Article III and the al Bahlul Remand: The New, New NIMJ Amicus Brief

By
Monday, August 18, 2014 at 12:59 PM

On July 14, the en banc D.C. Circuit ruled in al Bahlul v. United States that “plain error” review applied to Bahlul’s ex post facto challenge to his military commission convictions for conspiracy, material support, and solicitation–and then upheld the first of those charges under such deferential review (while throwing out the latter two). One of the potentially unintended consequences of the Court . . .
Read more »

Petitioner Files Opening Brief in Al Bahlul v. United States

By
Wednesday, August 13, 2014 at 7:34 PM

Petitioner Ali al Bahlul, the Yemeni detainee who served as Osama bin Laden’s personal assistant and public relations secretary, has just filed his opening brief in Al Bahlul v. United States, in an attempt to overturn his military commission conviction for conspiracy to commit war crimes. In the filing, al Bahlul argues that he was tried for . . .
Read more »

Another Bad Day for Another Guantanamo Detainee in the Courts

By
Thursday, August 7, 2014 at 3:42 PM

This time, it’s Mohammed Al-Adahi (remember him?). The opinion is by Judge Gladys Kessler. It reads in relevant part: Petitioner remains conditionally cleared for release since the action of the [Guantanamo] Task Force. Petitioner alleges that his health has declined so substantially that the possibility of “any significant physical activity—much less any involvement in the hostilities—is virtually impossible ….[T]herefore, no . . .
Read more »

District Court Opinion in Al Odah v. United States

By
Tuesday, August 5, 2014 at 12:09 PM

The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia has granted the government’s motion to dismiss Fawzi Khalid Abdullah Fahad Al Odah’s petition for a writ of habeas corpus and declaratory judgment in a 21-page opinion issued on August 3. Al Odah has been detained at Guantanamo Bay since 2002. He was arrested by Pakistani border guards in . . .
Read more »

In Trouble With the Law

By
Monday, August 4, 2014 at 6:30 PM

If press accounts are correct, we will soon have the long-awaited Executive Summary of the Senate Intelligence Committee Report on the CIA detention program.  The report itself, which has not been submitted for declassification, is massive, running some 6,000 pages and including about 37,000 footnotes.  In preparing the report, the Committee and its staff apparently . . .
Read more »

A Nugget of Real News in General Martins’s Statement

By
Monday, August 4, 2014 at 7:36 AM

Last night, Wells posted a statement by Military Commissions Chief Prosecutor Mark Martins about the weeklong Nashiri hearing getting under way today at Guantanamo. The statement contains the following sentence: “I also assess at the present time that there are no additional prosecutions against Guantanamo detainees that would be made possible by the existence in the military . . .
Read more »

David Remes on the Counsel Access Case

By
Saturday, August 2, 2014 at 6:30 PM

David Remes, an attorney representing Guantanamo detainees–and, in particular, co-counsel for the petitioner in Hatim–writes in with this comment on Friday’s ruling in that case from the D.C. Circuit: The D.C. Circuit’s decision is disappointing, but in a sense it is anticlimactic. The government effectively won the case over a year ago, when the court stayed Judge . . .
Read more »

ECHR: Poland’s Role in CIA Black Site Violated Detainees’ Human Rights

By
Thursday, July 24, 2014 at 10:08 AM

The European Court of Human Rights (“ECHR”) today handed down a pair of judgments in long-running human rights cases brought against Poland by two U.S. terrorism detainees—Abu Zubaydah and Abd Al Rahim Hussayn Muhammad Al Nashiri.  As is well known, both had alleged violations of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, . . .
Read more »

Another Day, Another Former Guantanamo Detainee Can’t Get Back in Court

By
Wednesday, July 23, 2014 at 8:17 PM

This time it’s Mohammad Rimi, transferred to Libya back in 2006. The judge is Richard Leon. Here’s the opinion. Here’s the order.

This is Seriously Weird

By
Saturday, July 19, 2014 at 7:10 PM

Russia slaps a travel ban on Rep. Jim Moran, Judge Gladys Kessler, and a bunch of people connected to Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib. That’ll show ‘em. From the Associated Press: MOSCOW (AP) — Russia has placed a U.S. lawmaker and 12 other people connected with the Guantanamo Bay detention camp and the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq . . .
Read more »

Bahlul: A Longer View

By
Tuesday, July 15, 2014 at 6:46 AM

Steve says of yesterday’s Bahlul decision. Whether or not you agree with the result of today’s decision, the D.C. Circuit has done no one any favors–not the government, which will still be terribly uncertain as to which cases it can and can’t bring; not the defendants, for obvious reasons; not the public; and, most importantly, not the commissions–the fragility . . .
Read more »

Interesting New Habeas Argument in the D.C. Circuit

By
Friday, July 11, 2014 at 7:18 AM

This case has been kicking around the district court for a while, but has now made it to the D.C. Circuit. Ahmed Adnan Ajam is basically arguing that the executive branch wants to release him and the transfer restrictions on its doing so represent an unconstitutional infringement of presidential power. He lost in the district court on . . .
Read more »

Hobby Lobby at Guantanamo?

By
Monday, July 7, 2014 at 9:39 AM

Have a look at this emergency motion for a temporary restraining order, filed Thursday by attorneys for Guantanamo detainee Imad Hassan. It opens: This motion seeks a temporary restraining order (TRO) prohibiting Respondents from depriving Petitioner of the right to participate in communal prayers during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, which commenced this year on June 28. . . .
Read more »

Global (Statutory) Habeas After Aamer

By
Wednesday, June 25, 2014 at 4:00 PM

As my co-authors and I put the finishing touches on the 2014-15 Supplement to Aspen Publishers’ National Security Law and Counterterrorism Law casebooks, I had another thought about the potential consequences of the D.C. Circuit’s February 2014 decision in Aamer v. Obama—about which I’ve blogged a fair amount previously. Recall that, in Aamer, the D.C. Circuit held that the Supreme Court’s decision . . .
Read more »

The Obviously Unconstitutional Cotton Amendment

By
Thursday, June 19, 2014 at 4:30 PM

Among the proposed amendments to the DOD appropriations bill currently under consideration in the House of Representatives is this doozy, courtesy of Arkansas Rep. Tom Cotton: None of the funds appropriated or otherwise made available by this Act may be used to transfer or release any individual detained at United States Naval Station, Guantanamo Bay, . . .
Read more »

Relitigating Guantánamo: A Modest Quibble with John’s Post on Abu Khattala

By
Wednesday, June 18, 2014 at 2:43 PM

It’s refreshing to find voices of reason in Ben’s, Jack’s, and John’s posts on the Abu Khattala capture. Jack’s post, in particular, provides a lucid exposition of what any number of congressional Republicans should not have needed to have explained to them: That the absence of a connection to al Qaeda categorically resolves in the . . .
Read more »

Why the Hostility to Civilian Justice Anyway?

By
Wednesday, June 18, 2014 at 9:19 AM

I agree with Jack that military detention or trial by military commission are likely not available options for Ahmed Abu Khattala. But I’m hung up on a different point: Why are so many conservatives so married to the idea that detention or military justice is the right answer here? Every time we capture a terrorist suspect now, . . .
Read more »

Two Legal Takeaways from Yesterday’s HASC Hearing

By
Thursday, June 12, 2014 at 9:19 AM

Yesterday’s HASC Committee Hearing (video here) on the Bergdahl swap was pretty eventful.  At least two important legal issues were discussed: the legality of not notifying Congress about the swap, and the legal consequences of the end of the Afghan conflict.  The first has received the most attention, but the administration arguably made some underappreciated news . . .
Read more »

Allaithi v. Rumsfeld: D.C. Circuit Affirms

By
Tuesday, June 10, 2014 at 2:06 PM

A three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit handed down its decision in Allaithi v. Rumsfeld today, affirming the district court’s ruling that six detainees subjected to prolonged detention and alleged mistreatment at Guantanamo did not sufficiently allege that the officials who authorized and supervised their detention acted outside the scope of their employment. At the outset, Judge Brown (also writing . . .
Read more »