Wednesday :: Apr 9, 2008

Iraq Follows Bush's Lead On Justice


by Turkana

More evidence that the Iraqi "government" is learning how to do things the Bush way. First, Raymond Bonner, in the New York Review of Books, explains the Bush way:

On February 11, 2008, the Pentagon announced that charges were being filed against six men in connection with the September 11 attacks, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, alleged mastermind of the attacks and one of al-Qaeda's most senior members, and Ramzi bin al-Shibh, a leader of the Hamburg cell that included several of the September 11 pilots. It has taken nearly seven years for these men to be indicted—while more than 240 other prisoners continue to remain at Guantánamo in a state of indefinite detention without charge. In contrast, Britain, after one of the longest and most expensive trials in its history, has already convicted and sentenced four men for the failed attacks on the London subway on July 21, 2005.

Last year, British officials also arrested three other men for involvement in the deadly attacks on three London subway lines and a bus on July 7, 2005, two weeks earlier; they are scheduled to go on trial at the end of March. Spain has convicted twenty-one of twenty-eight men charged in connection with the terrorist attacks on commuter trains in Madrid in March 2004; and Indonesia has held lengthy trials and convicted four men who were accused of the terrorist attacks in Bali in October 2002, two of whom have been sentenced to death, and two to life imprisonment.

"Justice delayed is justice denied" is a guiding principle of the American criminal justice system. The Bush administration has ignored this principle with impunity, and America's image abroad has suffered greatly as a result.

Then, McClatchy shows how well the Iraqis are learning:

Hamed is just one of thousands of detainees who are locked up in Iraqi-run detention centers.

Some undoubtedly are criminals, but some are innocent people who were caught in roundups after violent incidents or arrested by the largely Shiite-run Iraqi security forces because they're Sunnis, according to interviews with detainees and American military personnel on a rare visit with U.S. Army inspectors last month to an Iraqi army-run run jail.

There was little the U.S. military could do for Hamed, said Army Lt. Col. John Knox Mills, who was visiting as part of a routine inspection. But he promised to ask when a judge would visit the jail. Hamed thanked Mills but said he remained angry at the Iraqi security forces for his detention.

"I think I have something bad in me now that makes me hate everyone here," he said.

The jail at Camp Constitution is considered one of the better facilities that Mills' team from the Judge Advocate General corps inspects.

Turkana :: 5:07 PM :: Comments (0) :: Spotlight :: Digg It!