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I haven't seen this diaried elsewhere so...

GUANTANAMO BAY, Cuba — Charges against Omar Khadr were dismissed Monday by a military judge who ruled that his tribunal had no jurisdiction to try the alleged terrorist because the government had failed to designate him an "unlawful enemy combatant.''

"Charges are dismissed without prejudice," Colonel Peter Brownback ruled.

From the Globe and Mail website (updated from 12:27 story which read "with prejudice"): U.S. case against Khadr collapses

The article (which is short) goes on to indicate that Mr. Khadr, who is now just 20 years old and has been a long-term "guest" in the no-mans-land known as Guantanamo since he was barely 16, had been declared an enemy combatant by a military panel in 2004. How this will affect Mr. Khadr's immediate future or other "guests" is unknown at this point.

More on the Khadrs over the fold...

The Khadr family has gained considerable (unwanted) notoriety in Canada since the Moron Terror began in 2000. Their father, Ahmed Said, was killed in a gunfight in October 2003 with Pakistani forces in Waziristan. His youngest son was paralyzed in the same battle. It would appear that the father's fanaticism was pretty much forcibly impressed upon the entire family. The 2nd eldest, Abdurahman, who calls himself the black sheep of the family, also trained in Afghanistan, but appears to have had no interest in continuing to do so. He appears to have come to enjoy western culture and largely been uninterested in his father's ideology and enemies.

Read more at the CBC page, the PBS page, or Wikipedia.

Since Omar was so young at the time of his capture, considerable media scrutiny has focused on his treatment. This is a young man who had probably not developed his personality fully prior to capture and has now spent 1/4 of his life in total isolation inside the surreal and insane world of American captivity at Guantanamo. At the same time, the Canadian public has had a good deal of difficulty with this family, not least of which because they have both spoken out against many things ordinary Canadians would hold dear, while at the same time using their citizenship status in order to try and  help their situation.

The long and short of it is this: if Khadr cannot be tried for his "crimes", exactly who can be? And under what circumstances? And where does this leave the entire question of military tribunals and jurisdiction at Guantanamo? Regardless of the rest of the family, Omar Khadr is clearly a victim many times over. Victimized by his father, thrown into battle at 15, more than 4 years of absurdity in American custody. One can only hope that this is the beginning of sanity and reason creeping back into American law.

UPDATE: Changed diary title second time to make it more likely to attract interest. This is an important decision and we ought to know about it. Until someone comes along with another diary, hoping to stay on the list long enough to be seen.

UPDATE 37B: Resorted to dreaded all-caps in title since diary is dropping off into oblivion... This is important folks.

UPDATE 402C: Okay, well, now this and another Gitmo diary are both on the rec list. I'd suggest either KP or myself delete, only here's the thing: there are good discussions in both diaries, so I don't want either of them to disappear. If only there were some way to merge them into one... (hint! hint!)

UPDATE 8,236,472 Z: Per MCJoan, changed title to "DISMISSED" rather than "DROPPED". It's a meaningful difference.

UPDATE 8,236,473 A: Okay, I give, I have changed the title to reflect my growing acknowledgment that titles matter. Especially since I have been saying the same thing all day about another (more egregious) diary. Not the first time I've been a tad hypocritical, but hopefully it's happening less often.

Originally posted to thingamabob on Mon Jun 04, 2007 at 10:07 AM PDT.

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