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Hamdan Helped Bin Laden Elude Capture

From his fans and allies at Reuters:

Guantanamo detainee Salim Ahmed Hamdan (L) flanked by his legal team inside a courtroom at Guantanamo Naval Base, June 4, 2007.

Prisoner helped bin Laden elude capture: FBI

By David Alexander Fri Dec 7

GUANTANAMO BAY U.S. NAVAL BASE, Cuba (Reuters) – Osama bin Laden’s former driver and bodyguard was a trusted member of al Qaeda who helped his boss elude U.S. forces after the September 11 attacks and should face a war crimes trial before a special military tribunal, prosecutors said on Thursday.

But defense lawyers argued Salim Ahmed Hamdan was a civilian support person who should be treated as a prisoner of war under the Geneva Conventions and not tried by tribunals set up to judge prisoners in President George W. Bush’s war on terrorism.

The comments came in closing arguments after a judge heard the first witnesses in a U.S. military war crimes proceeding since the end of World War Two. The Guantanamo war crimes tribunals first convened in August 2004 but no witnesses were called in any previous hearings.

The testimony, in a marathon session lasting nearly 15 hours, was part of a pretrial hearing to determine whether Hamdan, a Yemeni who is about 37 years old, is an unlawful enemy combatant who can be tried on war crimes charges in a U.S. military tribunal established by Congress in 2006.

Hamdan “was a member of the club,” said Army Lt. Col. William Britt, the prosecutor, in his closing arguments. “He was a member of the team. Not a peripheral member. He was right there with Osama bin Laden.”

Hamdan drove bin Laden and his son Othman when they evacuated their compound near Kandahar in Afghanistan before the September 11 attacks, federal investigators testified.

Although not initially with bin Laden on September 11, Hamdan returned to bin Laden’s side and continued to drive him for weeks as he moved from city to city and house to house to avoid U.S. efforts to retaliate, said Robert McFadden, a Defense Department special agent who interviewed him…

Hamdan is accused of acting as Osama bin Laden’s driver and bodyguard and transporting weapons for al Qaeda. He is charged with conspiracy and providing material support for terrorism…

And yes, this is the same Hamdan who is the darling of the America-haters. The hero of Hamdan v. Rumsfeld.

The same Yemen-born terrorist enabler and protector who we are told should have all the rights of a US citizen accused of jay-walking.

This article was posted by Steve on Friday, December 7th, 2007. Comments are currently closed.

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