Jawad Released Home to Afghanistan

After nearly seven years in U.S. custody, Mohammed Jawad was released and flown home to Afghanistan over the weekend. One of his defense attorneys, Marine Maj. Eric Montalvo, accompanied Jawad as a private citizen on this trip home.

The ACLU represented Jawad in his habeas corpus case in federal court, which challenged his illegal detention and prosecution before the military commissions at Guantánamo. Of the 200-plus Gitmo detainees who still remain, two facts stood out with Jawad's case. First, his age: he was a teenager, possibly as young as 12, when he was captured. And second, Jawad's former lead military prosecutor, Lt. Col. Darrel Vandeveld, left the military commission in September 2008 because he did not believe he could ethically proceed with Jawad's case.

While in U.S. custody, Jawad was held in solitary confinement and subjected to Guantánamo's infamous "frequent flyer" sleep deprivation program. He attempted suicide in December 2003 by repeatedly slamming his head against his cell wall. Two judges — first his military commission judge, then a federal court judge — ruled that evidence gleaned through Jawad's torture and coercion was inadmissible. Despite all this, there's hope for Jawad's future, as his habeas co-counsel, Air Force Maj. David Frakt, told us in May:

Mohammed finally is starting to have some hope that he may be released sometime soon and see his family again. During our visit, the psychologist that accompanied me asked what his plans were. He said, "You are a doctor, you help people. Major Frakt is a lawyer, he helps people. When I get out, I want to get an education so I can help people. I want to be a doctor and take care of the people in my country."

What Jawad endured is not unusual. In fact, it's pretty common among the detainees at Guantánamo. After years of detention with no end in sight, it's time for President Obama to expedite justice for those detained at Guantánamo. At this point, we should have been able to gather enough evidence to charge those suspected of a crime in federal court. If there's no credible evidence, then continued detention is unacceptable. Indefinite detention is unlawful and goes against America's basic values of fairness and justice. Act now: tell President Obama to reject indefinite detention and close Guantánamo.

 

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Incognito

Great! Now he can go and re-join the Taliban. How many of those released from Guantanamo have returned to their terrorist activities?

He might be twelve, but many suicide bombers are young.

Liberal Hater

Wouldn't it be funny if Jawad came back to America and blew up every ACLU building, with no one getting hurt of course. Maybe America would be a safe, decent place to live then. Just a thought.

Paen

Before the right wingers start on about their love for the heroic troops I wish one of them would explain what is so heroic about torturing a child.

Concerned Citizen

I want to comment about some Post's that i veiwed thru freepress.com.
I found these posts when i went to freepress.com-then I clicked on the opinion feature towards top/then I typed in Forum in the search box/then I clicked on the Forums page/I then went to politics and discovered something that I cannot belive is notgone public yet/
A Woman was Tortured repeatedley in Dearborn Mi/And it's being covered up on a mass scale/From what Im reading the victim has proof and that she's trying hard to conenct with the ACLU
Please go to this site and review it everyday until she come's to the ACLU herself

Maggie

The ACLU fought hard to get this boy back home. What about the girl in Florida that is afraid to return home to Ohio because she knows her Muslim family will kill her? Are you going to wait until she is dead and then sue the State of Florida?????

Anonymous

so what if he joins the taliban how many ameriacan soldiers rape and toture people from otrher countries should the American youth be wiped away to stop further recriuts. No so every individual should be judged not by his faith but by his character. Clinton was an excellent president. Bush was and idiot.What category should Obama be prejudged before the end of his tenure. Be sensible.

chris

There is no way that I or any of my family would write, call, or email the president to close Gitmo! There are many Americans like myself who don't want these terrorists brought to American soil under ANY condition! It is amazing (and sickening) that you are so willing to stand up for the so-called rights of terrorists that hate our country and yet so willing to run an under cover investigation that includes photographs of undercover CIA officials and other intelligence personnel being taken and then shown to Jihad suspects tied to the 9/11 attacks. What do you have to say about the "John Adams Project"? These people went into careers in which they could help the people in our country and instead, they are being used as pawns by one of our country's biggest domestic terrorist group! With friends like the ACLU, who needs enemies?

roald

Incognito, so once we make a horrible mistake, we cannot correct it? Lock the child up forever because he might do something bad? Do you think the real bad people will not use the fate of this child to recruit others?

Maggie, what does one have to do with the other? Has the girl in Ohio asked the ACLU for help?

Maggie

Roald I don't know. She is underaged I believe 17. Has the ACLU offered? She is a minority.

roald

Maggie - I don't know if the ACLU needs to be asked or if they ask. Perhaps the moderator or an ACLU employee can tell us.

The girl is being represented by the Florida DCF. Their lawyers are arguing for her to stay in Florida until her family situation can be evaluated.

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