Latest in Terrorism Trials: Military Commissions

Terrorism Trials: Military Commissions

Military Commissions After Al-Bahlul

I take issue with two recent critiques of the Guantanamo military commissions, both arising from a D.C. Circuit panel’s reversal, earlier this month, of the conviction by military commission of Ali al-Bahlul (an al Qaeda jihadist and detainee who had served in bin Laden’s inner circle) for conspiracy to commit war crimes.

Military Commissions

The Functional Case Against Military Commission Trials of "Domestic" Offenses

As I explained on Sunday, one way to understand the diffference between the majority and dissenting opinions in last Friday's D.C. Circuit decision in al Bahlul v. United States is as reflecting two different methodological approaches to the question of whether Congress can empower non-Article III military commissions to try "domestic" offenses like inchoate conspiracy.

Terrorism Trials: Military Commissions

An Overview of the DC Circuit’s Opinion in Al Bahlul v. United States

On June 12, a three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit handed down its decision in the most recent iteration of Al Bahlul v. United States, vacating defendant Ali Hamza Suliman al Bahlul’s conviction for inchoate conspiracy. Al Bahlul’s other convictions had previously been vacated by the D.C.

Terrorism Trials: Military Commissions

DCCA Panel Vacates Al-Bahlul's Conviction for Conspiracy

I have only flipped through the three-judge panel's 2-1 ruling in this quite important military commissions case.

It seems Judges Judith Rogers (who authored today's opinion for the majority) and David Tatel concluded to overturn the Guantanamo detainee's remaining conviction on Article III grounds. Judge Tatel also writes a separate opinion, mostly to explain why he joined an earlier en banc panel upholding Al-Bahlul's conspiracy conviction; Judge Karen LeCraft Henderson dissents.

Terrorism Trials: Military Commissions

Event with GTMO Chief Prosecutor Next Tuesday at Harvard Law

Perhaps of interest to Lawfare readers in the Boston area: Next Tuesday, the Harvard National Security & Law Association (NSLA) will host Brigadier General Mark Martins, the chief prosecutor for military commissions and lead trial counsel in the prosecution of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other accused perpetrators of the attacks of September 11, 2001, for a dinner event.

Martins will outline major provisions of the Military Commissions Act of 2009 and also address continuing concerns about delay and other challenges to the reformed system's legitimacy.

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