x-posted @ Comments From Left Field
“The Defence Department is so desperate to validate this broken process that they will disregard just about any concern of judicial economy or fairness to the accused… .
“They write a rule giving Omar a right to appeal, they tell Omar he has a right to appeal, and when he appeals, they claim he doesn’t have a right to appeal — Alice in Wonderland really is the only way to describe it.”
- Lt.-Cmdr. Bill Kuebler, lead military lawyer for Omar Khadr, commenting on U.S. military judge Peter Brownback’s order that Khadr’s trial “proceed in a “judicious manner,” in spite of a court appeal from Khadr’s lawyers questioning whether the young Canadian can legally be tried at all.”
The U.S. would never tolerate this kind of treatment for an American, yet the Canadian government continues to agree with the U.S. view that it’s good enough for a Canadian.
In an op-ed published this past June, Maude Barlow, Alex Neve and Roch Tasse noted that:
Despite the controversy surrounding Mr. Khadr and his family, who are well-known for terrorist connections and anti-western rhetoric, there is no justification for the Canadian government’s failure to demand forcefully and publicly, as other U.S. allies have, that his human rights be fully protected, including the right to a fair trial. Our government’s failure to make this public request, and its failure to demand that Guantanamo Bay be shut down immediately, sends a very worrying message to the rest of world about where Canada stands on human rights and international law. And it speaks volumes about the Canadian government’s tendency over these past five years to fail to put human rights at the centre of its relationship with the United States. [emph and link mine]
More from CanWest News on how “Canada is the only western country that has given the U.S. the benefit of the doubt in its treatment of “enemy combatants” being held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba… .”
Background: 2006 Rolling Stone profile of Omar Khadr, who has been in Gitmo limbo since 2002 after being captured in Afghanistan at the age of 15; Human Rights Watch: The Omar Khadr Case: A Teenager Imprisoned at Guantanamo.