Guantánamo: Idealists Leave Obama’s Sinking Ship by Andy Worthington

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by Andy Worthington
Featured Writer
Dandelion Salad
1 December 2009

Last week, lawyer, ex-Army Captain and Iraq veteran Phillip Carter, described by Glenn Greenwald as “a very harsh critic of the Bush administration’s detention and interrogation policies,” suddenly resigned his post as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Detainee Policy, which he had occupied since April. Carter claimed that he was leaving due to “personal issues,” which may be true, but as Greenwald noted, “the policies Obama has adopted in the last six months in the very areas of Carter’s responsibilities were ones Carter vehemently condemned when implemented by Bush.”

Greenwald then proceeded to explain how, in May 2008, Carter had condemned the Bush administration’s Military Commissions (the trial system for Guantánamo prisoners) as “fundamentally and fatally flawed,” arguing that “the rule of law will prevail only if they are perpetually blocked,” and cited a trial in a “civilian court” (his emphasis) of accused terrorists in France that involved “a combination of open and sealed (i.e., classified) evidence to prove the defendants’ guilt in a six-day trial,” which he regarded as the only viable model for the United States to follow.

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