President Gus Monty Hall

What else can you say about the Obama Administration’s sudden willingness to play “Let’s Make a Deal” with respect to the poster child for show trials Kangaroo Courts military commission trials, when it reached a plea deal with Canadian national and juvenile defendant Omar Khad. Pursuant to the deal, at least what is being reported (since, once again, it seems, details like “the sentence” are evidently not to be shared with the public… “state secrets” you know) is that Khadr would serve up to an additional year at GTMO before being transferred to the custody of Canada, where he will serve the remaining seven years of his sentence, or eight years on top of the nine he has already served in America’s gulag Guantanamo Bay.
Some background on Khadr’s case may be found in my interview with his former counsel Rick Wilson. In brief, “what’s wrong with this picture” is that Khadr (1) was 15, and (2) was probably unconscious, at the time he allegedly threw a grenade that killed a soldier in combat, (3) which is not a war crime, let alone a crime at all, and (4) Khadr was heinously abused, if not outright tortured, while in American custody. But other than that… a fine day for American justice, as the Obama Administration avoids the spectacle of being the only country to try a juvenile for war crimes since World War II or earlier.
I’m thinking that this will go down the way the David Hicks case went down in Australia… this action was taken before the spectacle of a trial inure and redound to both the detriment of the Harper government in Canada and to the Obama Administration. Once Khadr is in Canada… which I’m betting will be sooner than the year suggested… I’m thinking he’ll serve quite a bit less than that seven years. But who knows? Canada hasn’t exactly been nice with respect to Mr. Khadr until now. (As an added bonus, presumably, the Obama Administration has added a card to the Republicans’ deck going into the elections in eight days that it is “soft on terrorism” by cutting such a deal… and if the Democrats lose a few more seats as a result… I guess this would be a true “win-win” situation!)
Well… there is now a possibility Khadr will be a free man around his 30th birthday or thereabouts… a damned site better than the intention of the cowardly Obama Administration for those men who have not been convicted of anything, but whom it nonetheless asserts that the government can hold for life anyway. Well… some resolution of something. The President is already over nine months late on his “close GTMO” promise… but at least we avoid the spectacle of trying a juvenile for “war crimes.” In what now passes for our “civil discourse”… we take what we can get.