Friday, June 30, 2006


Another unsung hero. LATimes (06.30.06):
"The U.S. Navy lawyer who challenged the Bush administration's efforts to try terrorism suspects at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, walked a professional tightrope between fellow officers trying to gain speedy convictions and what he considered a moral imperative to buck the chain of command and vigorously defend his client.

Lt. Cmdr. Charles Swift could have taken the easy route of arranging a plea bargain for Salim Ahmed Hamdan, the Yemeni alleged to have worked as a driver and bodyguard for Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden.

But fearful of the dangerous precedent that could be set by denying international standards of justice to those swept up in the war on terrorism, Swift battled to get the rights and protections of the Geneva Convention for his client."

Lonely Victory for U.S. Navy Lawyer

It cost him his career. "Though Swift's successful challenge of the tribunal's legitimacy will probably open doors in the private sector and academia for the Navy lawyer, [Northwestern University law professor David] Scheffer said, Swift has reportedly been passed over for promotion."

"'I love the military. I love my career and I'm proud of it,' Swift said, noting he would be eligible for early retirement in nine months and would leave the Navy unless he was promoted. 'One thing that has been a great revelation for me is that you may love the military, but it doesn't necessarily love you.'"

On the other hand, what's it worth to be able to sleep well at night?



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