Omar Khadr’s Lawyer Collapses, Trial Postponed

By Alex Neve, Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada.  Neve is currently at Guantánamo to observe the military commission trial against detainee Omar Khadr. This is the fourth post in his series from the field.

12 August 2010

Omar Khadr's defence lawyer Lt Col Jon Jackson in the media hangar, Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.

In a case that has moved so slowly for so long - it is now nearly five years since Omar Khadr was first charged under the Bush administration - much happened during the first day of his military commission trial here at Guantánamo, both expected and unexpected. Proceedings began with opening statements from the prosecution and defence. They ended in drama when Omar Khadr’s military lawyer, Lieutenant Colonel Jon Jackson, collapsed in court late in the afternoon while cross examining a witness.  He was taken to hospital by ambulance and as I write it is uncertain when the trial will resume.

Earlier the commission heard from two prosecution witnesses and viewed a video that US forces had retrieved from the compound in Afghanistan where the firefight took place that is at the heart of the case against Omar Khadr.  It is there that, as a 15-year-old, he is alleged to have thrown a grenade that fatally wounded a US soldier, Sergeant Christopher Speer. Among those present in the courtroom today, for the first time, was the widow of Sgt Speer.

For the prosecution, Jeffrey Groharing began by wheeling in a scale model of the compound where the firefight took place.  He alleged that Omar Khadr had told one of his interrogators that he was a “terrorist, trained by al-Qa’ida” and that what he was most proud of was carrying out attacks against Americans. He alleged that Omar Khadr had deliberately decided to conspire with members of al-Qa’ida to kill as many US soldiers as possible.  When it came to the question of statements and confessions obtained during the teenager’s interrogations at the US air base in Bagram in Afghanistan and subsequently in Guantánamo, the prosecutor insisted that they were the result of friendly conversations between the detainee and his interrogators and that all were freely and voluntarily given.  He made no reference to Omar Khadr’s young age when these interrogations took place.

In his opening statement for the defence, Lt Col Jackson portrayed Omar Khadr as a scared child in the company of “three bad men” on 27 July 2002 when the firefight occurred.  He blamed Omar Khadr’s late father for the fact that Omar Khadr was there in the first place, adding that “Omar’s father hated his enemies more than he loved his son”.  [Editor’s note: Members of the Khadr family, including Omar, are believed to have moved to Afghanistan when he was 11 years old. According to the Miami Herald on 12 August 2010, the prosecutor said in his opening statement that Omar Khadr had grown up in a family of “radical Islamists” and had “even lived with Osama bin Laden in an al-Qa’ida compound in Afghanistan”].

Lt Col Jackson asserted that “Omar Khadr did not kill Sergeant Speer” and that it was another man who was also still alive after US airstrikes against the compound who had thrown the grenade.  On the question of interrogations, Lt Col Jackson highlighted the way Omar Khadr was treated in Bagram by his first interrogator, who questioned him while he was still in a stretcher, recovering from his serious injuries, and effectively threatened him with being raped and killed by “big black guys and Nazis” in a US prison.

The rest of the day was spent hearing from two prosecution witnesses, Colonel W and Sgt-Major D, both of whom had been involved in the 27 July 2002 firefight.  Colonel W had ultimate command and Sgt-Major D is the officer who shot and killed the other man who was still alive in the compound at the end of the firefight and also shot Omar Khadr, twice, in the back.  Both officers gave vivid testimony describing how the fighting unfolded, including highly charged moments such as when Sgt-Major D described holding Sgt. Speer’s hand as he lay bleeding from the shrapnel wound that ultimately took his life and urged him to live for his wife and children.

Neither Colonel W or Sgt-Major D actually saw Omar Khadr throw the grenade but testified they believed it had been him.  Sgt-Major D’s account of shooting Omar Khadr (who he said he saw sitting facing away from him) in the back certainly raises questions.  Inconsistencies appeared, too, between Colonel W’s testimony and the initial written report he had filed about the incident, which he further admitted he had changed some years after the events.  The first report, written hours after the fighting, said that “one badly wounded person threw the grenade and was later killed.”  Omar Khadr, however, obviously survived.  Colonel W then laid out how he revised his own personal copy of that report, some two or three years later, changing the word “killed” to “engaged.”  He indicated that the first report had been based on his mistaken assumption that Omar Khadr, who he had been told was unlikely to survive, had in fact died. He said that when he realized the error, he made the correction.

The prosecution also showed a video that US forces had recovered from the compound some 30 days after the firefight.  The video is a hodge-podge of images, some with conversation, others not, and included depictions of the making of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and planting IEDs on a roadway.  Omar Khadr appears in some of the images – which the prosecution argues is proof that he conspired with other al-Qa’ida members.  At the same time the video underscores Omar Khadr’s young age at the time and shows a teenager apparently eager to please the adults he was with.

But the dominant concern as the day ended was that of Lt-Col Jackson’s health.  It is virtually certain the trial will not continue on Friday, as he has been hospitalized overnight.  Depending on the results of medical tests, proceedings might resume on Monday. If he needs to be transferred to the mainland for treatment, an adjournment of at least several weeks is inevitable.

Post script, 13 August 2010

It was announced on Friday morning that Lt-Col Jackson has been transferred to the US mainland and that there will be a minimum 30-day delay in the trial.

Amnesty International will be urging the US authorities to use this development to abandon Omar Khadr’s military commission trial once and for all, and to resolve the Omar Khadr case in accordance with international human rights standards. The Canadian authorities should do what they have so far failed to do – seek Omar Khadr’s repatriation.

Read the AI briefing: USA: Denying human rights, failing justice: Omar Khadr’s military commission trial set to start at GuantánamoTake Action

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22 thoughts on “Omar Khadr’s Lawyer Collapses, Trial Postponed

  1. Mr. Neve:

    Could you please explain to me why you categorize the prosecutor's statements of unquestionable fact as "claims", implying any of the prosecutor's statements about Omar's family are somehow untrue?

    Are you saying we should believe you and Omar's lawyers and ignore our own lying eyes and ears?

    Omar’s mother Maha Elsamnah, the wife of Ahmed Said Khadr, Omar’s older sister Zaynab Khad and Omar’s older brother Abdurahman gave an interview shown Feb. 22, 2004. on the Canadian Broadcast Corporation, and later broadcast on the PBS network show Frontline.

    In this interview the Khadrs expressed support for 9/11, saying "America got what it deserved."

    Here is how Omar's mother and sister justified sending Omar as a little boy age 11 to train as a front line combat soldier with Osama Bin Laden, whom they describe as a close family friend.

    Interviewer: Maha, I guess a lot of Canadians would say how could a mother send her children to these camps for this kind of military training?

    MAHA: To be a brave man. I like my son to be brave. I mean as I was telling you, if I was in Canada, I would like my son to be trained to protect himself, to protect his home, to protect his neighbor, to see a young girl innocent, being raped or attacked, to really fight to defend it. I would really love to do that, and I would love my son to grow with this mentality. … So I would do training my child to defend his rights, it’s OK.
    ZAYNAB: And as Muslims, we are ordered to be trained, and always be ready–
    MAHA: To defend ourselves.
    ZAYNAB: The prophet ordered that people should get their children trained in swimming, aiming or sniping, and horseback riding. These are the three most important thing for a child even before he learns to read and write. …
    MAHA: And you would you like me to raise my child in Canada and by the time he’s 12 or 13 he’ll be on drugs or having some homosexual relation or this and that? Is it better? For me, no. I would rather have my son as a strong man who knows right and wrong and stands for it, even if it’s against his parents. It’s much better for me than to have my child walking on the streets in Canada taking drugs or doing all this nonsense.

    Omar’s older brother Abdurahman Khadr, was captured in Afghanistan in 2001 , but now lives in Toronto with the rest of his family.
    “I admit we are an al-Qaeda family. We have connections with al-Qaeda,” he told Canada’s CBC television.
    He said he and his brothers were sent to Afghanistan to train with al-Qaeda by their family.
    “I was raised to become a suicide bomber.” he admitted.
    “The first time I went to training, I was 11-and-a-half years old. I was 11-and-a-half. I remember that. My brother was 12. And we went to Khalden. Since ‘92 until 2003, I’ve been to Khalden, like, five times. I took assault rifle course, explosive-making course, snipers, pistols and Pet CC, which is a course that includes all of these. “

  2. Judo – the guy deserves a fair trial, just like anyone else would. That's the only reliable we as a society have of determining guilt or innocence.

  3. Mr. Neve:

    Could you please explain to me why you categorize the prosecutor’s statements of unquestionable fact as “claims”, implying any of the prosecutor’s statements about Omar’s family are somehow untrue?

    Are you saying we should believe you and Omar’s lawyers and ignore our own lying eyes and ears?

    Omar’s mother Maha Elsamnah, the wife of Ahmed Said Khadr, Omar’s older sister Zaynab Khad and Omar’s older brother Abdurahman gave an interview shown Feb. 22, 2004. on the Canadian Broadcast Corporation, and later broadcast on the PBS network show Frontline.

    In this interview the Khadrs expressed support for 9/11, saying “America got what it deserved.”

    Here is how Omar’s mother and sister justified sending Omar as a little boy age 11 to train as a front line combat soldier with Osama Bin Laden, whom they describe as a close family friend.

    Interviewer: Maha, I guess a lot of Canadians would say how could a mother send her children to these camps for this kind of military training?

    MAHA: To be a brave man. I like my son to be brave. I mean as I was telling you, if I was in Canada, I would like my son to be trained to protect himself, to protect his home, to protect his neighbor, to see a young girl innocent, being raped or attacked, to really fight to defend it. I would really love to do that, and I would love my son to grow with this mentality. … So I would do training my child to defend his rights, it’s OK.
    ZAYNAB: And as Muslims, we are ordered to be trained, and always be ready–
    MAHA: To defend ourselves.
    ZAYNAB: The prophet ordered that people should get their children trained in swimming, aiming or sniping, and horseback riding. These are the three most important thing for a child even before he learns to read and write. …
    MAHA: And you would you like me to raise my child in Canada and by the time he’s 12 or 13 he’ll be on drugs or having some homosexual relation or this and that? Is it better? For me, no. I would rather have my son as a strong man who knows right and wrong and stands for it, even if it’s against his parents. It’s much better for me than to have my child walking on the streets in Canada taking drugs or doing all this nonsense.

    Omar’s older brother Abdurahman Khadr, was captured in Afghanistan in 2001 , but now lives in Toronto with the rest of his family.
    “I admit we are an al-Qaeda family. We have connections with al-Qaeda,” he told Canada’s CBC television.
    He said he and his brothers were sent to Afghanistan to train with al-Qaeda by their family.
    “I was raised to become a suicide bomber.” he admitted.
    “The first time I went to training, I was 11-and-a-half years old. I was 11-and-a-half. I remember that. My brother was 12. And we went to Khalden. Since ‘92 until 2003, I’ve been to Khalden, like, five times. I took assault rifle course, explosive-making course, snipers, pistols and Pet CC, which is a course that includes all of these. “

  4. Judo – the guy deserves a fair trial, just like anyone else would. That’s the only reliable we as a society have of determining guilt or innocence.

  5. No he does not deserve a fair trial.

    He does not deserve a trial at is the key point Amnesty is rightly making since we are talking about a non-adult forced into it by his own family.

    He was abused by his family from the get go, force fed mental poison, and as an 11 year old child, a little boy who should have been allowed to enjoy a normal safe Canadian childhood, was forced into becoming an Al Qeda fighter. And by whom? By his own family, the very people who were supposed to protect him.

    I can't believe that a jury of honorable American officers will not realize this.

    The only problem in all this, the only factor Mr. Neve and Amnesty and all others who call for Omar's release neglect to mention is that the moment Omar is released he will return to the snake pit of the Khadr home in Toronto.

    This is the very site of the original war crime commuted against Omar, far worse than any supposed abuses in Gitmo. It is in his own home his own family commited the worst of the war crims against Omar, sending him to war at age 11.

    And they the true criminal1s in this whole story get off scot free, livingi it up in toronto, while Omar the vicitm rots in Gitmo.

  6. No he does not deserve a fair trial.

    He does not deserve a trial at is the key point Amnesty is rightly making since we are talking about a non-adult forced into it by his own family.

    He was abused by his family from the get go, force fed mental poison, and as an 11 year old child, a little boy who should have been allowed to enjoy a normal safe Canadian childhood, was forced into becoming an Al Qeda fighter. And by whom? By his own family, the very people who were supposed to protect him.

    I can’t believe that a jury of honorable American officers will not realize this.

    The only problem in all this, the only factor Mr. Neve and Amnesty and all others who call for Omar’s release neglect to mention is that the moment Omar is released he will return to the snake pit of the Khadr home in Toronto.

    This is the very site of the original war crime commuted against Omar, far worse than any supposed abuses in Gitmo. It is in his own home his own family commited the worst of the war crims against Omar, sending him to war at age 11.

    And they the true criminal1s in this whole story get off scot free, livingi it up in toronto, while Omar the vicitm rots in Gitmo.

  7. Yes — YOU, the foreign invaders of their lands, are the forces of "justice" — & Omar the child & his family — & by extension all who resist the US invasion of Central & Western Asia — are the criminals !!

    YOU the invaders, who flattened the houses of Omar's village with 500 pound bombs — YOU today are the champions of right & righteousness — & a child who threw a mere mortar is the ASSAILANT in the dock !!

    For you, Omar & his family are the brainwashed / brainwashing minions of darkness — & his interrogators, tormentors & torturers in prison, who threatened the boy with GANG RAPE in the gulag, represent the rightness of your system !!

    And SINCE WHEN are people caught up in an ACTUAL ARMED BATTLE, & who fight back in self defence in those moments when life hangs by a thread, CONVICTED as criminals for trying to stay alive by using ANY MEANS possible ??

    Only in america & the prosecution of her wars does this happen — & only if the resisting people are american Indians on Pine Ridge, Black people in Oakland, or Muslim people captured & brought back in chains from the edges of your collapsing empire !!

    His family believes the US got what it deserved in 9 / 11 ?? Really ???

    An entire vast, HUGE section of global opinion — AND american, Western, & nonIslamic opinion as well — conclude & assert that it is AMERICA'S CONTINUOUS & continuing wars, occupations, & bases across the Middle East, & her UNCONDITIONAL footlicking & backing of the lunatic state of israel & ISRAEL'S endless criminal aggressions & occupations in the region & outside it, that brought on 9 / 11 — & all other acts of revenge — upon her .

    But continue pretending otherwise, instead of confronting the truth — & it will only strengthen growing numbers of people in this by- now-universally-known conclusion.

    It won't need brainwashing to convince them either.

    Just go on talking & doing as you do.

  8. That part of a person's life which falls under her or his historical process is one thing.

    That which may fall within her or his record in relation to the law is another.

    The two don't necessarily go together.

    To deliberately & maliciously lump them together is to distort, misrepresent & confuse the legal record, and in the case of a prisoner, it is to condemn him to life without justice or any shred of rights.

    What Omar's family believes about 9 / 11, or to anything else, is utterly unrelated to his actual case.

    His arrest itself was part of an illegal process that continues into the present & the foreseeable future.

    For the US invasion of Afghanistan is completely illegal.

    The US Congress didn't authorize the invasion.

    The UN Security Council never sanctioned it.

    And the Taliban government of Afghanistan was never found at all to be a part of the 9 / 11conspiracy & attack.

    Today, to deliberately bring up "9 / 11" in the context of Omar's trial is a mischievous attempt to inflame american opinion against him, & make the illegitimate case against him appear valid & justifiable when it is not.

    The ruling Taliban government

  9. Yes — YOU, the foreign invaders of their lands, are the forces of “justice” — & Omar the child & his family — & by extension all who resist the US invasion of Central & Western Asia — are the criminals !!

    YOU the invaders, who flattened the houses of Omar’s village with 500 pound bombs — YOU today are the champions of right & righteousness — & a child who threw a mere mortar is the ASSAILANT in the dock !!

    For you, Omar & his family are the brainwashed / brainwashing minions of darkness — & his interrogators, tormentors & torturers in prison, who threatened the boy with GANG RAPE in the gulag, represent the rightness of your system !!

    And SINCE WHEN are people caught up in an ACTUAL ARMED BATTLE, & who fight back in self defence in those moments when life hangs by a thread, CONVICTED as criminals for trying to stay alive by using ANY MEANS possible ??

    Only in america & the prosecution of her wars does this happen — & only if the resisting people are american Indians on Pine Ridge, Black people in Oakland, or Muslim people captured & brought back in chains from the edges of your collapsing empire !!

    His family believes the US got what it deserved in 9 / 11 ?? Really ???

    An entire vast, HUGE section of global opinion — AND american, Western, & nonIslamic opinion as well — conclude & assert that it is AMERICA’S CONTINUOUS & continuing wars, occupations, & bases across the Middle East, & her UNCONDITIONAL footlicking & backing of the lunatic state of israel & ISRAEL’S endless criminal aggressions & occupations in the region & outside it, that brought on 9 / 11 — & all other acts of revenge — upon her .

    But continue pretending otherwise, instead of confronting the truth — & it will only strengthen growing numbers of people in this by- now-universally-known conclusion.

    It won’t need brainwashing to convince them either.

    Just go on talking & doing as you do.

  10. That part of a person’s life which falls under her or his historical process is one thing.

    That which may fall within her or his record in relation to the law is another.

    The two don’t necessarily go together.

    To deliberately & maliciously lump them together is to distort, misrepresent & confuse the legal record, and in the case of a prisoner, it is to condemn him to life without justice or any shred of rights.

    What Omar’s family believes about 9 / 11, or to anything else, is utterly unrelated to his actual case.

    His arrest itself was part of an illegal process that continues into the present & the foreseeable future.

    For the US invasion of Afghanistan is completely illegal.

    The US Congress didn’t authorize the invasion.

    The UN Security Council never sanctioned it.

    And the Taliban government of Afghanistan was never found at all to be a part of the 9 / 11conspiracy & attack.

    Today, to deliberately bring up “9 / 11″ in the context of Omar’s trial is a mischievous attempt to inflame american opinion against him, & make the illegitimate case against him appear valid & justifiable when it is not.

    The ruling Taliban government

  11. a.savage-

    I predict an explosive vest around your chest in the future.

    Prior to the U.S. "illegal" invasion of Afghanistan it was littered with al-qaeda training camps. UBL traveled with little fear and complete impunity. The rest of his miserable, kidney diseased, dialysis treated, evil life will be spent watching his back and rotting away/hiding in some cave.

    As far as the Taliban is concerned, yes they did harbor and aid al-qaeda. They had a choice to make and chose to defend the terrorists.

    You will not convince the very overwhelming majority of sensible people that the war in Afghanistan was just.

    I suppose if you had your way the Taliban and would still control the people.

    Best Wishes,

  12. a.savage-

    I predict an explosive vest around your chest in the future.

    Prior to the U.S. “illegal” invasion of Afghanistan it was littered with al-qaeda training camps. UBL traveled with little fear and complete impunity. The rest of his miserable, kidney diseased, dialysis treated, evil life will be spent watching his back and rotting away/hiding in some cave.

    As far as the Taliban is concerned, yes they did harbor and aid al-qaeda. They had a choice to make and chose to defend the terrorists.

    You will not convince the very overwhelming majority of sensible people that the war in Afghanistan was just.

    I suppose if you had your way the Taliban and would still control the people.

    Best Wishes,

  13. Thank you for sharing your views with me, Mr Allen.

    i enjoyed your comments.

    As for the Taliban, sir ……. do you know, after 9 /11, they had asked the US government to present the US case against OBL ?

    That they'd offered to give him up, if the evidence against him could be shown ?

    That the US never showed any such evidence, without which you cannot extradite anyone from one country to another ?

    Have you wondered why your government always stumbles on the path of the law ?

    Why it shows no interest in the ways of the law, because its interests & inclinations always appear to lie beyond their limits ?

    As you can predict the future, sir, how do you read it now for your own people, stripped of the benefit of laws & regulations & left in the path of your government ?

    i sincerely wish you, sir, all my best.

  14. Thank you for sharing your views with me, Mr Allen.

    i enjoyed your comments.

    As for the Taliban, sir ……. do you know, after 9 /11, they had asked the US government to present the US case against OBL ?

    That they’d offered to give him up, if the evidence against him could be shown ?

    That the US never showed any such evidence, without which you cannot extradite anyone from one country to another ?

    Have you wondered why your government always stumbles on the path of the law ?

    Why it shows no interest in the ways of the law, because its interests & inclinations always appear to lie beyond their limits ?

    As you can predict the future, sir, how do you read it now for your own people, stripped of the benefit of laws & regulations & left in the path of your government ?

    i sincerely wish you, sir, all my best.

  15. The argument is not over 9/11 or the war. It is about one person, Omar, who as a child who was brainwashed to hate all of humanity by his evil family, and was sent by his own mother from safe Canada, at age 11 to the hands of Osama Bin Laden himself to be trained as a terrorist killer.

    Obviously he should not be tried as he was involved in all this by his parents when he was a innocent Canadian child, and an acquittal by the jury of American officers is almost certain once they hear of his horrific upbringing.

    But the the most important question, the one Amnesty always totally ignores is: what should have been done to protect Omar from the real war criminals, the ones who abused him the worst.

    (hint :not the gitmo guards).

    His own mother is the war criminal who sent an 11 year old child to war, an criminal act which broke the Geneva convention, and yet it is exactly to her, the worst criminal of all in this whole story, that Amnesty wants to return Omar to.

    There she sits in safe Toronto with her Canadian citizenship of convenience, so proud and defending of her actions sending children to war, as Omar's older brother's sits in his soiled diapers, since he also was sent from Toronto to a Al Qeda camp at age 11 by dearest mother, except in his case instead of Gitmo like Omar, he was sentenced to life imprisonment as a quadriplegic from war wounds.

    And this is the so-called mother Amnesty fights to return Omar to ?

    The last 8 years in Gitmo can be argued to have been safer and more humane for Omar and in actuality Gitmo served to protect Omar from worse abuse from his own sickening family.

  16. The U.S. wasn't going to negotiate with Taliban (whom harbored al-qaeda). Besides, the Talibans "offer" was for the US to hand over evidence and they would try UBL in Afghanistan. The Taliban charging UBL under Islamic Law. That would be the equivalent of Goebl trying Hitler for war crimes.

    9-11 was an act of war perpetuated by al-qaeda. You can live in some deranged fantasy world in which UBL had nothing to do with it all you want.

  17. What masterly logic.

    Based upon i – don't – know – what law.

    So his mother should be tried as "war criminal" ??

    For what deeds, pray ?

    Do you even know what constitutes a "war crime" ?

    Or a "war criminal" ?

    Or are you rewriting international law ?

    And what court of law would host your charge against her ?

    And will you now advocate a women's wing in Guantanamo ?

    And when will your actual US / NATO war crimes in Afghanistan be tried in the courts of the world ??

  18. The argument is not over 9/11 or the war. It is about one person, Omar, who as a child who was brainwashed to hate all of humanity by his evil family, and was sent by his own mother from safe Canada, at age 11 to the hands of Osama Bin Laden himself to be trained as a terrorist killer.

    Obviously he should not be tried as he was involved in all this by his parents when he was a innocent Canadian child, and an acquittal by the jury of American officers is almost certain once they hear of his horrific upbringing.

    But the the most important question, the one Amnesty always totally ignores is: what should have been done to protect Omar from the real war criminals, the ones who abused him the worst.

    (hint :not the gitmo guards).

    His own mother is the war criminal who sent an 11 year old child to war, an criminal act which broke the Geneva convention, and yet it is exactly to her, the worst criminal of all in this whole story, that Amnesty wants to return Omar to.

    There she sits in safe Toronto with her Canadian citizenship of convenience, so proud and defending of her actions sending children to war, as Omar’s older brother’s sits in his soiled diapers, since he also was sent from Toronto to a Al Qeda camp at age 11 by dearest mother, except in his case instead of Gitmo like Omar, he was sentenced to life imprisonment as a quadriplegic from war wounds.

    And this is the so-called mother Amnesty fights to return Omar to ?

    The last 8 years in Gitmo can be argued to have been safer and more humane for Omar and in actuality Gitmo served to protect Omar from worse abuse from his own sickening family.

  19. So the US wouldn't negotiate with the Taliban government ?

    Then why ( or how ) go through the charade of asking them to hand him over ?

    And is there a law of nations saying the government of Afghanistan needn't be applied to for an extradition ?

    And how do you have an extradition without talking to the "host" government ?

    And no, the Taliban did offer to hand him over — if they got the evidence.

    Or, alternatively, to send him to a third, or neutral, country.

    And you're completely wrong, sir, when you say that the Taliban trying OBL would be the same as Goebbels trying Hitler.

    The last two persons were members of the same party & government.

    OBL & the Taliban were not, & are not, part of the same government or party.

    They were & are very, very different entities.

    With totally different agenda.

    Agenda at odds with each other.

    In contradiction with each other.

    But the US government & political class erased, & continue to erase, the line between them.

    To make the case for the war, invasion & occupation of Afghanistan.

    Just as they erased the facts on the ground about the socalled "WMDs" in Iraq, to make the case for war, invasion & occupation there.

    Cordially, sir, with my best.

  20. The U.S. wasn’t going to negotiate with Taliban (whom harbored al-qaeda). Besides, the Talibans “offer” was for the US to hand over evidence and they would try UBL in Afghanistan. The Taliban charging UBL under Islamic Law. That would be the equivalent of Goebl trying Hitler for war crimes.

    9-11 was an act of war perpetuated by al-qaeda. You can live in some deranged fantasy world in which UBL had nothing to do with it all you want.

  21. What masterly logic.

    Based upon i – don’t – know – what law.

    So his mother should be tried as “war criminal” ??

    For what deeds, pray ?

    Do you even know what constitutes a “war crime” ?

    Or a “war criminal” ?

    Or are you rewriting international law ?

    And what court of law would host your charge against her ?

    And will you now advocate a women’s wing in Guantanamo ?

    And when will your actual US / NATO war crimes in Afghanistan be tried in the courts of the world ??

  22. So the US wouldn’t negotiate with the Taliban government ?

    Then why ( or how ) go through the charade of asking them to hand him over ?

    And is there a law of nations saying the government of Afghanistan needn’t be applied to for an extradition ?

    And how do you have an extradition without talking to the “host” government ?

    And no, the Taliban did offer to hand him over — if they got the evidence.

    Or, alternatively, to send him to a third, or neutral, country.

    And you’re completely wrong, sir, when you say that the Taliban trying OBL would be the same as Goebbels trying Hitler.

    The last two persons were members of the same party & government.

    OBL & the Taliban were not, & are not, part of the same government or party.

    They were & are very, very different entities.

    With totally different agenda.

    Agenda at odds with each other.

    In contradiction with each other.

    But the US government & political class erased, & continue to erase, the line between them.

    To make the case for the war, invasion & occupation of Afghanistan.

    Just as they erased the facts on the ground about the socalled “WMDs” in Iraq, to make the case for war, invasion & occupation there.

    Cordially, sir, with my best.