Guantanamo Bay

Seven Months Locked in a Room Under Bright Lights

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http://www.cageprisoners.com/ . . .

Major Mori, David Hicks military defense lawyer, is in Australia to brief MPs and to meet with Australian Attorney-General Philip Ruddock.

David Hicks, the last Australian detainee held at Guantanamo Bay (originally there were two Australians) has been detained by the US since his capture among Taliban forces in Afghanistan in December 2001. He pleaded not guilty to charges of attempted murder, aiding the enemy and conspiracy, and was to appear before a US military commission.

But following the Hamdan vs. Rumsfeld Supreme Court ruling in June those charges were dropped. Subsequent to the passage of the new Military commissions Act into law, it is expected that Hicks will once again face similar charges under the new revamped military commissions system, which in most every respect is identical to the old discredited system. Major Mori has indicated that his client will once again plead not guilty.

Hicks in solitary seven months – Mori

By Peter Veness
November 1st, 2006
US military lawyer Major Michael Mori (pictured right) said today that Hicks had been confined to one concrete room for about 22 hours of every day for the last seven months.

“Since March of this year, he was placed in solitary confinement, in a cement room with a steel door where he spends 22 and a half to 23 hours a day,” Major Mori said.

He suggested Hicks had been subject to sleep deprivation, an action defined as coercion rather than torture by Mr Ruddock.

“The lights are on 24 hours a day. That affects, obviously, his sleep and his sense of time.

“There was no valid reason given why he was placed in solitary.”

Asked if Hicks was close to breaking, Maj Mori said he hoped the former Adelaide man was not.

“We’re doing everything we can. We try to get down there as quickly as possible and try to get books through for him, but it does take some time.”

But the reality was that Hicks was in a terrible mental state.

“I went down and spent my birthday with him at the beginning of October,” Maj Mori said.

“He’s not doing well. You can see the effects.

SOURCE: The Australian

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It is interesting to note:

  • David Hicks is one of only ten detainees that have ever been charged with anything by the Bush administration — and that is out of a total of 760 detainees that have been processed to GTMO. In theory at least, there may be some actual evidence that the Bush administration has gathered, that is why he is up for trial.
  • But Major Mori has taken Hicks case to heart, he is a one man campaign working to have his client released.
  • So why is Major Mori so willing to stick his neck out, way way out, on David Hicks behalf? We are after all talking about a defendant that is accused of being “the worst of the worst”.
  • I think it is because Major Mori has determined to his own satisfaction that Mr. Bush has no evidence that would stand up in court — regular court, not kangaroo court.

Most of the evidence that has been made public against the detainees seems to be of the nature,
ACCUSER: You were in country “A[redacted]” (actually Afghanistan but we are not allowed to say, national security!!) with Osama bin Laden in February of 2001!
DETAINEE: No I wasn’t! For most of 2000 and 2001 I was working at [redacted]. I have given you a list of names for you to contact. These people will corroborate my story. Have you talked to any of the people on my list?
ACCUSER: The Court is unaware of any such list. We have a statement from Mr. X who claims that you were present at a talk given by Mr. bin Laden. What do you say to that?
DETAINEE: Who is this Mr. X. How can I know him if you will not tell me his name? If I could just confront Mr. X, I am sure this question could be cleared up. Mr. X is not telling the truth.
ACCUSER: We have told you before, for security reasons you are not allowed to know the identity of Mr. X.
DETAINEE: Well in that case I have nothing further to say.

I think privately Major Mori is probably flabbergasted and dismayed that Mr. Bush’s evidence gathering could be so slap dash and dishonest. But what is upsetting him even more is the complete lack of due process that has been afforded his client.

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Written by mikk0

November 1, 2006 at 3:50 pm

Posted in Guantanamo

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