We are back after a week off, and apparently your co-hosts used the extra time to sharpen disagreements about old school topics like … GTMO! Tune in for:
Latest in Guantanamo
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit today rejected arguments by Abdul Razak Ali, an Algerian national held at Guantanamo Bay, that the full breadth of the Fifth Amendment’s Due Process Clause applies to Guantanamo detainees. The court denied Ali’s petition for a writ of habeas corpus.
You can read the opinion and judgment below:
We are back with an interview-focused episode! Tune in as Professors Chesney and Vladeck interview Brigadier General John G. Baker, USMC. Gen. Baker is Chief Defense Counsel for the military commissions at Guantanamo.
And, yes, there’s frivolity at the end... Bills-themed frivolity!
The D.C. Circuit will hear oral arguments on December 11 in Ali v. Trump. Abdul Razak Ali, who has been detained at Guantanamo for over 17 years, had petitioned for an initial en banc hearing before the D.C. Circuit but that request was denied. Ali seeks relief under the Due Process Clause for his continued detention at Guantanamo.
Last month, the military commission for the matter of United States v. Khalid Shaikh Mohammad et al. (i.e., the 9/11 trial) held a marathon three weeks of nearly back-to-back hearings. After being held up by delays in the publication and release of relevant transcripts, this post summarizes these proceedings and identifies several areas of potential interest, including testimony from two FBI special agents regarding their interviews with the defendants and their prior knowledge of alleged torture by the CIA.
Update on the Military Commissions: Continued Health Issues, Recusal Motion and a New Cell in 'al-Iraqi'
The military commission trying alleged al-Qaeda commander Abd al-Hadi al-Iraqi reconvened Aug. 21-28. You can find previous Lawfare coverage here and here.
On June 21, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit returned to the question of the constitutional rights possessed by the detainees remaining at the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. In particular, Khalid Ahmed Qassim asserted a Fifth Amendment due process right to see the classified information that allegedly supports his detention.
Last Week at the Military Commissions: 9/11 Commission Debates Who Gets to Determine When Hostilities Began
The military commission in United States v. Khalid Shaikh Mohammad, et al. (i.e., the 9/11 military commission) reconvened from April 29 to May 2. The parties discussed conflict of interest concerns, the disclosure of classified documents, and how to approach the determination of whether or not there is an armed conflict, among other issues. Before recessing until the next session in mid-June, presiding military judge, Col.
Defense counsel on behalf of Guantanamo detainee Moath Hamza Ahmed Al-Alwi have filed a reply in further support of their petition for a writ of certiorari with the Supreme Court in Al-Alwi v. Trump. The government's brief opposing certiorari is available here.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on Tuesday issued its opinion in In Re: Abd al-Rahim Muhammed al-Nashiri. The court held that Col. Vance Spath, the judge in the al-Nashiri case, should have been disqualified from his position while seeking a job as an immigration judge with the U.S. Department of Justice. The court vacated every order Spath has issued since Nov. 2015 as well as related rulings by the Court of Military Commissions Review.