Civil Discourse Now

Where the far left and far right overlap for fun and enlightenment

Gitmo release of a man held 19 years without formal charges...

Abdul Latif Nasser was released from captivity after 19 years. He never was charged with a crime. He never was given the basic right of a trial. The “Great Writ” is habeas corpus, Latin for “you have the body.” Black’s, 10th ed., and means the government has to justify detention.

Even former (temporary) Hoosier Chuck Manson was given due process after the 1969 murders for which Manson was infamous. To hold a person without charges indefinitely is unconscionable. We neither won “hearts and minds” nor advanced “freedom and democracy.”

People who attacked the U.S. on 9/11 were not (formally) dispatched by a foreign power. Most of them were Saudi nationals, but the Saudis are our friends. (Note: sarcasm.) Therefore they did not fall within the protection of rules of war.

They committed criminal acts. However, a person with an Arabic name who embraces a faith in Islam cannot be charged with, much less convicted of, a terrorist act. Abdul Latif Nasser is a victim of prejudice. He was held for 19 years without being given basic rights.

It appears he was turned in for a bounty. In the face of outrage over thousands of deaths, it is hard to stand up for the rights of the accused, but that is the time when standing up against mobs is most important. His imprisonment for 19 years makes us less secure.

Our system, based on the rule of law, is supposed to follow due process even for those accused of committing the most despicable of acts. When we kick the rule of law to the side, and allow a person to be held for nearly two decades without charges, our system is broken.

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