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Category Archives: Terrorism Trials: Military Commissions

Al Hadi Motions Hearing: November 18 Session

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Tuesday, November 18, 2014 at 1:00 PM

It’s a chilly afternoon here at Fort Meade—the venue for today’s closed circuit television broadcast of pre-trial litigation down at Guantanamo.  Proceedings in the military commission case of United States v. Abd Al Hadi Al-Iraqi are set to begin at 1 p.m. After those get underway, Lawfare will post dispatches in our “Events Coverage” section; we’ll link to . . .
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11/17 Session #3: Common Allegations, Part Two

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Monday, November 17, 2014 at 11:26 AM

We return from recess, and Clayton resumes his argument in opposition to AE19—a motion to strike common allegations from the charge sheet against Al-Hadi. Clayton refers to Stirk’s suggestion that the law requires prosecutors to make spare or few allegations in a conspiracy case; he says he knows of no authority to that effect. And . . .
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Chief Prosecutor Statement on This Week’s Hearing in Al-Hadi

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Monday, November 17, 2014 at 9:03 AM

You’ll find it here.  Brig. Gen. Mark Martins’ remarks begin as follows: Good evening. Before turning to the proceedings scheduled for this coming week, I wish to update observers interested in United States v. Al Nashiri on the interlocutory appeal previously pending before the U.S. Court of Military Commission Review (“U.S.C.M.C.R.”). In September, the government appealed to the . . .
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Al-Hadi Motions Hearing: November 17 Session

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Monday, November 17, 2014 at 8:56 AM

Today marks the first of a possibly three-day, pre-trial motions hearing in the military commission case of United States v. Abd. Al Hadi Al-Iraqi.   Y’all know the drill: from 9 a.m. onward, video and audio from the Guantanamo courtroom will be zapped, via closed circuit television, to Fort Meade’s Smallwood Hall.  Lawfare will view the proceedings . . .
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DC Circuit Temporarily Stays United States’ Appeal in Al-Nashiri, Pending Consideration of Mandamus Petition

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Wednesday, November 12, 2014 at 8:55 PM

The order grants a motion filed by Al-Nashiri, and was handed down today by Circuit Judges Cornelia Pillard and Judith Rogers, over the dissent of Circuit Judge Brett Kavanaugh. It’s gist is temporarily to pause the government’s appeal, to the Court of Military Commission Review (“CMCR”), of the dismissal of some (though not all) of the capital military . . .
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ICYMI: Coverage of Last Week’s Hearing in Al-Nashiri

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Monday, November 10, 2014 at 10:44 AM

ICYMI, GTMO policy folks: Matt Danzer’s final round of digests on last week’s hearing in United States v. Al-Nashiri can be found below, and in our “Events Coverage” section.  (Earlier coverage of the hearing is here, too.) Enjoy. 11/5 Session #4: Statements, Transcripts, and Questionnaires 11/6 Session: Fighting Over MRIs and Hearsay

9/11 Defense Counsel on Proposed Destruction of CIA Emails

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Thursday, November 6, 2014 at 2:14 PM

Attorneys for Ammar al-Baluchi, one of the five men accused of plotting the 9/11 attacks, said the following today in a statement: WASHINGTON, DC-Today, the legal team representing Ammar al Baluchi submitted its opposition to the CIA’s plan to destroy its emails from 2003 to 2006.On August 18, 2014, the National Archives recommended approval of . . .
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Al-Nashiri Motions Hearing: Nov. 5 Session

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Thursday, November 6, 2014 at 10:04 AM

Hey GTMO fans: the estimable Matt Danzer’s digests of yesterday’s hearing in this capital Guantanamo military commissions case can be found below, and in our “Events Coverage” section. Keep an eye on this space; we will update this post with more digests throughout the day. 11/5 Session #1: Arguing to Reargue 11/5 Session #2: Skyping with HVDs . . .
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This Week’s Hearing in Al-Nashiri

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Wednesday, November 5, 2014 at 9:03 AM

A little programming note here, y’all: today marks the first of a two-day, pre-trial hearing in the military commission case of United States v. Al-Nashiri.  But Lawfare unfortunately won’t be in the house, so to speak—which is to say that your correspondent will not be able to schlep out to Fort Meade, to watch and report back on . . .
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Fawzi Al-Odah Transferred from GTMO to Kuwait

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Wednesday, November 5, 2014 at 8:28 AM

That takes the count down to 148 detainees at Guantanamo.  Here’s the story from the Miami Herald’s Carol Rosenberg: GUANTANAMO BAY NAVY BASE, Cuba A Kuwait aircraft lifted off from this remote Navy base with a long-held captive before dawn Wednesday, sealing the first repatriation of a former so-called “forever prisoner” whose dangerousness was downgraded by a U.S. . . .
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Chief Prosecutor Statement on This Week’s Hearing in Al-Nashiri

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Wednesday, November 5, 2014 at 6:13 AM

Brig. Gen. Mark Martins’ remarks on the two-day pre-trial session, which commences today, can be found here.  (Note that the hearing will proceed, despite the pendency of the United States’ appeal of the dismissal of charges relating to Al-Nashiri’s alleged role in an attack on the M/V Limburg.) From the statement: Between pre-trial sessions, significant work . . .
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Evidence of Absence: A Brief Reply to Peter Margulies on the al Bahlul Argument

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Thursday, October 23, 2014 at 9:55 AM

In light of both our prior exchange and my Just Security post from yesterday, I only have two new points to make in response to Peter Margulies’ post on yesterday’s D.C. Circuit oral argument in al Bahlul v. United States, which raises the question whether military commissions may constitutionally try offenses that are not recognized as international war crimes. As I . . .
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The Al Bahlul Argument: Article III, Conspiracy, and Precepts of International Law

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Thursday, October 23, 2014 at 9:33 AM

Some may wish that Ex Parte Quirin, the Supreme Court’s case upholding the military commission convictions of Nazi saboteurs would recede into history.  However, as Steve has noted, the oral argument in the D.C. Circuit Wednesday in Al Bahlul v. United States suggested that Quirin is very much alive. The D.C. Circuit decided in an . . .
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Oral Argument in Al Bahlul: Judge Tatel and Quirin Dicta

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Wednesday, October 22, 2014 at 7:24 PM

Much could be said about this morning’s argument, before a three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit, in the long-running military commission case of Ali Hamza Ahmad al Bahlul v. United States. In this little read-out, I’ll make this lone observation (one I see Steve also mentioned too, over at Just Security): with his questions to . . .
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Confusing the Issues in al Bahlul

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Wednesday, October 1, 2014 at 10:11 PM

For the two people still following the exchange between me and Peter Margulies over the bottom-side briefing in the al Bahlul D.C. Circuit military commission appeal, I wanted to offer a very quick (and hopefully final) word in response to Peter’s surreply from this afternoon, in an effort to crystallize the true points of departure between . . .
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Reply to Steve on al Bahlul, the “Law of War,” and Article III

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Wednesday, October 1, 2014 at 11:30 AM

How much deference should Congress receive in determining when military commissions are necessary incidents of war?  That’s the real nub of the dispute between Steve and amici arguing to the D.C. Circuit that Article III did not bar the military commission conviction of Ali Hamza al Bahlul, whom the en banc court has already described . . .
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Why Article III Matters: A Reply to Peter Margulies on al Bahlul

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 10:23 PM

I must confess that I don’t fully understand Peter Margulies’ response to my post from earlier today. My post argued that the bottom-side briefing in the D.C. Circuit in al Bahlul offers a relatively weak (and, in my view, already debunked) explanation for why Congess can allow allow military commissions to try enemy belligerents for wholly domestic offenses without . . .
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Article III, the Framers, and al Bahlul: A Reply to Steve

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 8:23 PM

Steve’s post arguing that the military commission conviction of former bin Laden aide Ali Hamza al Bahlul for conspiracy to murder civilians violates Article III does not do justice to the Framers’ carefully considered view of the interaction between Article III and Congress’s war powers.  In critiquing both the government brief and the amicus brief . . .
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Article III and the Bottom-Side Briefing in al Bahlul

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Tuesday, September 30, 2014 at 12:02 PM

Jane already flagged the merits brief filed by the U.S. government on September 17 in al Bahlul v. United States, the major challenge to the power of the Guantánamo military commissions to try non-international war crimes that was remanded by the en banc D.C. Circuit to the original three-judge panel back in July (and in which oral argument is . . .
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Al-Nashiri: USG Appeals Dismissal of French Oil Tanker Charges

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Friday, September 19, 2014 at 2:48 PM

The United States today appealed an adverse ruling in the capital military commission case against Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri. The Guantanamo detainee stands accused, among other things, of orchestrating the 2000 attack on the U.S.S. Cole—and in playing a role in another attack against the M/V Limburg, a French oil tanker. Only legally controversial counts regarding the latter are it issue for . . .
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