Witness Names to Be Withheld From Detainee <Via TruthOut.Org: William Glaberson, in Saturday's New York Times reported:
Defense attorneys representing a 21-year-old being held prisoner at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, "have been ordered by a military judge not to tell their client - or anyone else - the identity of witnesses against him" in the prisoner's upcoming war crimes trial, newly released documents show, which the attorneys say "would hamper their ability to build an adequate defense because they cannot ask their client or anyone else about prosecution witnesses, making it difficult to test the veracity of testimony."These 'security' fuckers are bat-shit fuukin' CRAZY., chers. Check this out:
"It is conceivable, if not likely, that Al Qaeda members or sympathizers could attempt to target witnesses," a prosecutor, Maj. Jeffrey D. Groharing of the Marines, wrote to the judge, Col. Peter E. Brownback III of the Army...You know who the (alleged) witnesses are? USer troops--who may well be covering their asses, cuz the kid was 15 at the time, and was wounded in the 'fire-fight' (which could as easily be a massacre of innocent civilians); No one should EVER believe the 'official' accounts about fights in a war.
...Mr. Khadr's military defense lawyer, Lt. Cmdr. William C. Kuebler of the Navy, said that while he has been given a list of prosecution witnesses, the judge's decision requires him to keep secrets from his client and that he would ask Colonel Brownback to revoke the order. He said it treated Mr. Khadr as if he had already been convicted and deprived him of a trial at which the public could assess the evidence against him.
"Instead of a presumption of innocence and of a public trial," Commander Kuebler said, "we start with a presumption of guilt and of a secret trial."
In an interview, Brig. Gen. Thomas W. Hartmann, a senior official in the Pentagon's Office of Military Commissions, said that the commission system was open to scrutiny from news organizations and human rights groups and that the order was necessary to protect the lives of witnesses.The accused is a Canadian, by the way.
"The system is designed to be open," General Hartmann said. "But there are certain things that simply must be protected."
Most witnesses in Mr. Khadr's case are expected to be military personnel who took part in a 2002 firefight in Afghanistan when an American special forces soldier, Sgt. First Class Christopher James Speer, 28, was fatally wounded. Mr. Khadr, who was 15 at the time, was badly injured.
"It is so fundamental," General Hartmann said, "that we're in this global war on terror. We need to protect our soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines and there's nothing nefarious about it."
Makes ya wonder how they ever successfully prosecute murderous mobsters, don't it?