Thursday, December 18, 2008
Judge Richard J. Leon of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia last month ordered the release of five Algerians (with Bosnian citizenship), finding insufficient evidence that they were "enemy combatants"; I posted here. Now the NYT reported this week that the Bush administration is preparing to release three of them to Bosnia.
Why not release all five? According to the Times, one of them--Boumediene himself, the detainee who gave his name to last term's famous decision ruling that the constitutional privilege of habeas corpus extends to Guantanamo detainees--lost his Bosnian citizenship while in detention over questions about how he obtained it. The fifth may be caught up in more administration monkey-business; we've already seen plenty in the case; the NYT:
The case against the six men [only five of whom Judge Leon ordered released] offered the latest example of the administration's pattern of changing strategy in its legal defense of the detention camp. On the eve of the hearing before Judge Leon, the Justice Department said it was abandoning its claims about the embassy bombing plot. Instead, it claimed in court that the men had been planning to go to Afghanistan to fight Americans.