Posted by Lex, on February 6, 2009
I wondered aloud last week about the temerity of the military judge who told POTUS to naff off when he asked for a four-month delay in Guantanamo commissions. The specific case was the trial GWOT detainee Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, he of the USS Cole bombing infamy. Colonel Pohl might have been entirely within the bounds of the law by doing so, but he was bucking the senior most man in the military chain of command in his first week in office.
Doing so, it seemed to me at the time, was a good way to determine the limits of military judicial authority:
As President Obama prepared to order the Department of Defense’s Military Commission to withdraw charges against terrorist suspect Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri on Friday afternoon, the convening authority for the Commission, Susan Crawford, withdrew the charges on her own Thursday night.
The charges were withdrawn without prejudice, meaning they later can be reinstated in a military commission or pursued in a civilian court. Al-Nashiri will remain in custody.
The original plan was for the announcement not to be made until after President Obama meets with the families of victims of terrorist attacks on 9/11 and on the U.S.S. Cole Friday afternoon, where he will assure them that this step was not done to be lenient towards al-Nashiri.
The move is being done to stop the continued prosecution of al-Nashiri in a court system that his administration may ultimately find illegitimate, not for any other reason, sources told ABC News.
Andy McCarthy argues that we’re back to a September 10th mentality. I liked September 10th. It was a really nice day.
I just don’t like where it led us.