Bin Laden Driver Gets 5 1/2 Years — Administration Pledges to Simply Hold Him Indefinitely

A military panel of six officers shocked the Administration by giving Osama bin Laden’s ex-driver, Salim Hamdan, only five and a half years. In a demonstration of the Administration’s contempt for even judicial rulings from its own tribunals, the Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman stated that, after serving his time, Hamdan would revert back to being an “enemy combatant” and could be held indefinitely. So, after proclaiming to the world that he received a “fair trial,” here,the Administration is now saying that the trial and sentence are meaningless.

Since Hamdan has been imprisoned at the U.S. military detention center since 2002 and has been credited with 61 months served, he would have only five months to serve. The Administration wanted 30 years to life.

For the many Democrats who supported this tribunal system, this is the inevitable result. Ultimately, the trial does not mean a thing when the President can simply declare him to be an enemy combatant once the sentence is served.

It is an obvious mockery of a legal system and Whitman’s comments seems to strive to guarantee that no one can seriously mistake this tribunal system for a real legal system.

For the full story, click here.

23 thoughts on “Bin Laden Driver Gets 5 1/2 Years — Administration Pledges to Simply Hold Him Indefinitely”

  1. Zak,
    Of course everybody “got” that you were being ironic. With you I sense an intelligent person, who is so fascinated with himself that he believes that most people are unable to appreciate his brilliance. Since you so often refer to your debating abilities at University, I have little doubt that you are still a young man.

    Wisdom begins when a person comes to realize that they don’t know everything. Sadly, young adults, except for those who are truly humble or some who possess genius, are not ready to understand this realization. As you age and gain experience you will either put aside this absolute belief that you know it all, or you will stultify your
    innate intelligence and become like those you most despise. If its’ the former you will learn and grow throughout a productive life and if its’ the latter your lot will be anger and bitterness.

  2. I’m sure NOBODY got the “satire” of the New Yorker cover, I was being ironic. I have absolutely no doubt of what those subjected to torture will do when/if they are released, probably the same as McCain – kill as many of “the enemy” as they can. The fact that McCain not only pushed for war in Iraq, but now does so with Iran, makes JOKES about killing Iranians AND approves of torture, shows that torture cannot leave a person mentally whole (assuming McCain was “normal” before being tortured).

  3. Rafflaw,
    Back at you for remembering the Cheney “They will all get lawyers” quote. It certainly presents good circumstantial evidence that this administration knew that what they were doing was illegal and might have dire consequences for them.

    I doubt that Amnesty International will be the career choice of most of these illegal detainees, if they get released. Guantanamo has created an appalling situation for the US. My sadness is that those responsible for its’ creation will not be called to task for it

  4. The Military Panel is obviously under the impression that Obama will win the election and were trying to help the chauffeur by giving him a sentence that would put him out of Bush’s grasp. However if McCain wins, you know this guy will have his sentence extended at least until the end of McCain’s term(s).

    After being tortured and imprisoned for being a chauffeur, I wonder what line of work this guy will be doing once (or if) he gets out. Maybe something for Amnesty International.

  5. Michael Spindell,
    I for one agree with your take on this case. The Pentagon can’t allow anyone out who might start telling what we did to them while in captivity. As Cheney mentioned in a quote from Jane Mayer’s book, “They will all get lawyers”.

  6. One person’s reality is another person’s fantasy. My reality in this case is that the Army Tribunal convicted this guy under pressure from the White House, but being people with conscience tried to get him out quick with a light sentence. The White House on the other hand cares nothing for justice and much for appearances. They are also people with strong sado-masochistic tendencies and enjoy treating people badly, hence they aren’t going to let this guy go. As Mespo referred to in another thread this is so reminiscent of the Dreyfus Affair. The French Govt. in that instance knew Dreyfus was innocent for years, but refused to let him go to save face. In my reality acting like this is akin to insanity. However, I know some others here have a reality different from mine and I accept that they may think I’m crazy.

  7. This is little known. Romero was the first director to work with, “hidden in plain sight” product placement, now a common marketing ploy in both TV and cinema.

  8. Jill,

    I wonder if Romero was setting up the evolution of the Zombies shown in “Land of the Dead” with that. I think a much more likely reason is he needed a reason to have Zombies in a mall.

  9. Bob, Esq.

    I’m happy the treatment center worked for you. Now you have returned to the blog that is familiar to you, much like zombies go to the mall.


  10. Gyges,

    They will take you to the george bush international center for mindwipe. He’s living proof their techniques work.

  11. On 912, Bush told Richard Clarke to see if he could find a link between 911 and Iraq. And that fake letter that Suskind reported that Bush requested of Feith linking Iraq to 911 was predated to 7-1-01. Clearly Bush wanted to (and Bush surrogate Fox still does) link 911 to Iraq. The WMD issue was used to frighten Americans into thinking that Iraq could kill more of them, just as they did on 911 – the UN Weapons Inspectors weren’t important and neither was the UN.

    Also, the US DOD defines terrorism as, “The calculated use of unlawful violence or threat of unlawful violence to inculcate fear; intended to coerce or to intimidate governments or societies in the pursuit of goals that are generally political, religious, or ideological”.

    But in actual fact, according to Bush, a terrorist is any “bad guy” that doesn’t do US bidding. Hussein was OK when he was buying US WMD to kill Kurds, and fight a war with Iran but after Bush was elected, and two “oil men” were running the country, he became a “terrorist”. Libya and Korea were “terrorist” nations, but now they’re playing ball. Nelson Mandela was a “terrorist” until a few months ago for resisting the Apartheid Government of HIS country.

    BTW, the above definition makes the US a “terrorist state”.

  12. Jill,

    I’m addicted to reality. I think my family is planning an intervention.

  13. Gyges,

    Has this govt. ever once detained, tortured or abused even one innocent person? You always seem hung up on facts. What is your problem?


  14. Zakimar,

    Actually I believe the original push for the war was because Saddam supposedly broke with his terms of surrender by researching and acquiring WMD. I vividly remember the “Don’t let the smoking gun be a mushroom cloud” rhetoric. The ties to 9/11 only came into play once it was clear that there weren’t any WMD to be found.


    How do you know that they’re terrorists at Guantanamo? I mean that seriously, how do you know that every person in Gitmo is a terrorist? Also, just so we’re clear on definitions, what makes someone a terrorist?

  15. You are obviously one of the three “crybabies” I’ve previously referred to, and thus beneath contempt. I specifically said “some sort of”, because I know Double Jeopardy refers to someone being charged with the same offence twice.

    Now to the reasonable people on this blog, Bush and the Zionist neocons pushed for war initially by saying that Hussein was responsible for 911 – you’re senile, Zionist leader Murdoch still claims as much. So if thousands of people already died for 911, “oops, sorry, let’s now find the real culprit” shouldn’t suffice.

    And if you people are too cowardly to even hide behind one pseudonym, two or more won’t make a difference – we all know you’re still one of the “original three”.

  16. Zakimar, you obviously no idea of the meaning of double jeopardy, the reasoning (if you can call it that) for going to war in Iraq, or the nature of the crimes that got Sadam hanged. It appears that in a world running rampant with absurdity and injustice, we can add your name to the list. Get a clue!!

  17. Shouldn’t there be some sort of Double Jeopardy defense for bin Laden? The US already killed thousands of Iraqis and had Saddam Hussein executed by their puppet government for 911, how can they also prosecute bin Laden for the same crime?

  18. maybe if we ever catch osama bin laden we could get some liberal judge to make him serve only 2 months in jail. he could be let out for good behavior for not killing people while in jail, keeping his cell neat, give him credit forthe time he was secluded from society in an afgan mountain, give him tv and exercise time for disclosing who his henchmen were.——– i dont see why people freak out that terrorists are held at guantanamo or that they dont have the same rights as law abiding american citizens. these arenot some petty traffic violations they have committed-these are cold-blooded murderers. in my mind, when they first killed an american, they lost there rights.

  19. This is just one more example of how the Bush Administration has turned the rule of law in this country upside down. The arrogance is astronomical. It seems obvious that they held the so-called Military Commission trials as a sleight of hand trick to distract the public and play out the clock until the end of the Bush Administration. Prof. Turley, could this be another war crime if the trial gives him 5 1/2 months more to serve and then Bush refuses to release him?

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