Hicks trapped in the world of Dr StrangeLove… …

27 Feb

trapped in the world of Dr Strangelove

The public lecture by David Hick’s Lawyer, David McLeod at UTS Sydney provided an informative insight into the case of David Hicks, who has been captured by the US administration and detained in Guantanamo Bay without trial since December 2001.

This lecture provides with the average person on the street, a much clearer perspective of the hurdles faced by his defence team in the upcoming military commission II, that the Australian will be tried on. According to McLeod, the possibility of the trial happening this year, is remote.

McLeod pulls no punches, with the aid of humorous cartoon and text slides, to explain how this is a going to be a sisyphean task.

He touched on various issues such as the

1. nature of the detention
2. the nature and set up of the military commissions
3. the charges against Hicks
4. nature of torture
5. family dynamics of Hicks
6. how Hick’s legal team handles the press
7. funding issues such as disbursement, travels to gitmo bay
8. the politics involved
9. the need for objectative commentators to influence public opinion
10. evidences
11. actions taken in Australia
12. possibility of Hick’ UK citizenship

In his lecture, he touched on the inhumane prison conditions in Guantanamo Bay, the reluctance of the Australian government to bring Hicks back home, the violations of the International Covenant of Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) in detaining Hicks committed by the Bush Administration, and how interrogation techniques such as sleep deprivation and chaining to the ground are not considered torture.

The new military commission to try Hicks is very likely to produce biased results as the judges and jury consisted of people appointed by the Bush Administration, who were themselves involved in the prosecution in Guantanamo Bay.

The Military Commission Act (2006) that the trial will be based on is by itself, disturbing as it:

1. suspenses Habeus Corpus
2. has a retroactive effect to offences not declarative
3. complies to existing laws of terrorism
4. permits hearsay evidence
5. permits hearsay evidence of hearsay evidence
6. permits coerced evidence
7. does not require witness to be called
8. does not require classified evidence to be shown to defendant and his civilian lawyer

As the military commission itself is partial, the chances of Hicks getting a fair trial is slim.

The Australian is charged with providing material support for terrorism and attempted murder. However, the Administration has not been able to find any evidence to prove that he has shot or attempted to shoot anyone.

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One Response to “Hicks trapped in the world of Dr StrangeLove… …”

  1. Ray February 27, 2007 at 6:20 am #

    This whole affair has made millions of people more aware of the incorrect terminology that is being used by the U.S. political spin doctors.
    Torture is now called “rendition”, and the civil wars in Iraq and Afghanistan is all called “terrorism”, so that then automatically puts all captured enemies outside of the protection of the Geneva conventions.
    I want to know what the new American term is for executing Afghan prisoners. Has anyone heard?

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