17 July 2008

Bin Laden's Driver/Bodyguard May Be Tried By A Military Commission

Salim Ahmed Hamdan's bid to postpone his trial by military commission was denied today. U.S. District Judge James Robertson (a Clinton appointee to the D.C. Circuit) stated, "Hamdan is to face a military commission designed by Congress based on guidelines handed down by the Supreme Court."

That statement seems to be a direct reference to the June 2006 Supreme Court ruling in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld; a ruling that laid the groundwork for the Military Commission Act of 2006, which is the legislation that authorized the commission that Hamdan has been designated for trial by.

Back in 2006, I stated on Nick's blog (my comments are the ones made by Mojo) that Hamdan v. Rumsfeld could end up being bad news for Hamdan. The decision primarily found that the military commissions couldn't take place because they weren't defined by Congress and, as they stood, would be in violation of the UCMJ and/or the Geneva Conventions. That decision left open the possibility that Congress could define the rules for military commissions, however, which they did in late 2006.

Funny, isn't it, that Hamdan's victory in 2006 has created the means for him to be tried in 2008. It has put a big smile on my face so far, and that smile will be even bigger if he is sentenced and that sentence is upheld.


No comments: