New court can silence captives who tell secrets By Carol Rosenberg

Dandelion Salad

By Carol Rosenberg
Miami Herald News
Mon, Feb. 04, 2008

A new court at Guantánamo would allow the U.S. military to keep its secrets by cutting off terror suspects’ testimony from the ears of observers at the flick of a switch.

GUANTANAMO BAY NAVY BASE, Cuba — On the eve of the resumption of its war crimes trials, the military on Sunday unveiled a new state-of-the-art court capable of trying six alleged terrorists simultaneously — and silencing them from the outside world, if they try to spill state secrets.

The military offered a comprehensive look at its new court, part of a $12 million razor-wire-ringed legal complex that arrived by cargo plane and barge in prefabricated parts. Unlike a more ambitious plan to build a $125 million compound on the site overlooking Guantánamo Bay, the new compound can be dismantled and shipped back stateside once trials are done.


It also has a 30-seat adjacent room, behind a tempered-glass window, where observers can hear the proceedings on a broadcast basis — and a kill-switch where a security officer or the judge can cut the sound in case someone divulges a state secret.

There is no blackout capacity or curtain, meaning the media, legal observers, dignitaries and family members who might attend a trial could watch but not listen.


h/t: CLG

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