Open Letter to Omar Khadr

31 07 2010

Dear Omar,

It was with great sorrow that we read your letter to Dennis Edney on May 26, 2010 and which has been published in many newspapers and websites. Sorrow because your pain is palpable. Sorrow because of the great injustice dealt you. Sorrow because you have given up hope. And sorrow because you are not aware of the multitudes of people in Canada, the United States and even the world who support you.

This letter is being sent to you with the express intention of bringing some of that support to you. We know you were a child soldier and should have been treated as such. We don’t hold you responsible for the sins of your father. We want you to fight the Guantanamo military justice machinery. Do not allow yourself to be a scapegoat. Your life is too important. The lessons you have learned to valuable to sacrifice to such a cause.

Omar, please know, that as you fight for your freedom and justice, we stand firmly behind you, because you are fighting for all of us. We welcome the day when you will, after having entered Guantanamo an imprisoned child, walk away from it a free man. Never give up hope…and we’ll do the same.

If you would like to sign this letter to Omar please go to: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/10/open-letter-to-omar-khadr

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9 responses

1 08 2010
flipper

Khadr is not a child soldier.He is a terrorist thug.Supplicating for a know terrorist is disgraceful.You would do better to spend some of your sympathy to the widow and two young daughters of Chris Speer.Khadr must face the consequences of his actions.And he is doing so.

2 08 2010
Michelle Matthews

I have no idea what criteria you are using to make the determination that Omar Khadr is not a child soldier, but according to all international laws and protocols that I am aware of 15 years old most definitely qualifies as a child soldier. On top of which you have clearly judged him guilty before he’s even had his day in court (8 years later). In most western democratic judicial systems one is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

10 08 2010
Mar

Khadr is a terrorist thug? Guilty already? Dangerous way of thinking. 600+ other detainees (who were tortured at GITMO then released) were called “the worst of the worst” but our government was incorrect. Can we just be honest and admit Gitmo was a horrible mistake. Those released were framed. How the hell can we believe Khadr wasn’t? The people will pay with their own freedoms someday if they permit fake trials. The bell tolls for us all. Just can’t believe the sheep being led. Not too smart, in fact “stupid”.

13 08 2010
Michelle Matthews

Mar, I don’t think Khadr is a terrorist thug at all. And, yes, you’re right, there is a tendency of many people to render a verdict before hearing the evidence in his case.

10 08 2010
Louie

How about the fact that he wasn’t in any actual army? Where are his dogtags? What country does or did his army belong to? He’s not a soldier, he’s a terrorist.

Here’s the hilarious part, he’s going to be found guilty. It’s a foregone conclusion. Admitting taking part in terrorist activities on tape will sign his fate. And when that day comes, and he is found guilty, there will be no posts on blogs like this apologizing. There will be no posts saying, whoops, I’m wrong, turns out he is a terrorist. No, there will only be posts saying the system is flawed, or is rigged or is biased.

Have you already made up your mind and turned this killer into a hero? Sounds like you are doing what you accuse the other side of doing.

13 08 2010
Michelle Matthews

Louie, NATO and the US went to Afghanistan knowing they weren’t fighting a regular, uniformed army which renders your point moot. (Aug 25. Just changed this last word from mute to moot. Spellcheck arrrgh)

13 08 2010
Michelle Matthews

Louie, the big charge against him is murder (ironic in a war don’t you think) which has nothing to do with anything he said on any tapes. You are the one pre-judging him. Sad.

24 08 2010
opit

You seem to have had a nice set of ‘commentary’ from the “101st Fighting Keyboarders”. These lackwit quislings harass honest reporting and fearless statements.

The virtue of the torturers is well known : though Bu$h denied that for years. It seems the old standby Water Torture used by Torquemada in the Spanish Inquisition and in Witch Trials in the New World and Old is ‘interrogation’. Interesting : a person desperate to get the pain to stop will say anything…which is why a Real as opposed to a Kangaroo Court won’t accept the product of coercion.

Army officers themselves have reported on these events : which the ‘popular’ press cannot seem to find. And prosecution staff at Gitmo has been disgusted enough to offer legal representation free….after getting out of the service of institutional corruption.
U.S. Army report on Iraqi prisoner abuse
Executive summary of Article 15-6 investigation of the 800thMilitary Police Brigade by Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba
It was ordered by Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez, commander of Joint Task Force 7, the senior U.S. military official in Iraq, following persistent allegations of human rights abuses at the prison.
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/4894001/
The Turning Point
How the Susan Crawford interview changes everything we know about torture.
Susan J. Crawford, convening authority of the military commissions at Guantanamo Bay. Crawford, a retired judge who served as general counsel for the Army during the Reagan administration and as Pentagon inspector general, Washington Post published a front-page interview by Bob Woodward, in which Crawford stated without equivocation that the treatment of alleged 20th Sept. 11 hijacker Mohammed al-Qahtani at Guantanamo Bay was “torture.” http://www.slate.com/id/2208688/?from=rss

Hot air ? The laws making it impossible to prosecute go back quite a ways.

Military Commissions Act 2006 http://www.aclu.org/national-security/military-commissions-act-2006
American Service Members Protection Act 2002
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Servicemembers%27_Protection_Act
Bilateral Immunity Agreements
http://www.amicc.org/usinfo/administration_policy_BIAs.html

If there was ‘evidence’ fit for use it would not have been necessary to ‘rig the game’. And for a young man found under rubble needing hospitalization to be detained indefinitely without trial and subjected to torture is already “Cruel and Unusual Punishment’ without adding the fact that he would be a ‘Child Soldier’ as defined by the U.N. if there were any proof !

25 08 2010
Michelle Matthews

Opit, I am in agreement with your analysis in its entirety. Since having posted this letter to Omar Khadr, the military judge (Parrish) has determined that Omar’s confession was not tainted by torture or threats of gang-rape and is, therefore, admissible in full. He also editorialized his decision by adding that Omar was very mature for a 15 year old, as though he had met him personally at that time. The trial is a farce worthy of Kafka’s pen.

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