Ignoring a prosecution request for a severe sentence, a panel of military officers sentenced the convicted former driver for Osama bin Laden to time served plus five months. Salim Hamdan is the same guy who beat former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld in a U.S. Supreme Court Case.
The military commission officials seem to have wanted to a fair trial for Hamdan. The judge actually excluded testimony obtained through torture (euphemistically referred to “coercive”). The sentence was not heavy-handed.
Yet…The Pentagon says Hamdan will not be leaving Guantanamo when he finishes up his sentence. So, how does this make America any different from any tyrannical regime that refuses to adhere to laws?
This is vexing me, too. In June 2008, Justice Anthony Kennedy said in a majority ruling on Guantanamo:
…§7 of the Military Commissions Act of 2006 (MCA), 28 U. S. C. A. §2241(e) (Supp. 2007), operates as an unconstitutional suspension of the writ.”
Why are Military Commissions being utilized? Why are they being utilized if the Pentagon can trump the ruling? This was just a huge exercise in showmanship.
Can Rule of Law be mocked by the present “process” anymore than it already has?
One thing is clear. The Bush Administration is getting exactly what it wants–to subvert the Constitution with zero accountability. (Olbermann addresses this in the third story of his “Bushed” segment).