Omar Khadr, a 23-year-old Canadian citizen was kidnapped by the military in Afghanistan after being shot to the infirmary at the U.S. detention center at Bagram Air Base, where he was tortured and threatened with rape before being transferred the prison at Guantánamo Bay—all when he was only 15—where he’s been held captive since. The ‘war crime’ was throwing a hand grenade at U.S. troops and allegedly killing one of them, though the cause of the soldier’s death is in question, the burden of proof cannot be met of who threw any grenades, throwing a grenade at a uniformed enemy is not a war crime and child soldiers are legally distinguished as victims.
At AntiWar Radio with Scott Horton, journalist, legal analyst and Human Right First senior associate in law and security Daphne Eviatar discussed the U.S. military commission to try Mr. Khadr for war crimes (25:55):
19 Aug 2010 | AntiWar Radio
Daphne Eviatar, Senior Associate in Law and Security for Human Rights First, discusses the circumstances surrounding Omar Khadr’s capture and incarceration in Afghanistan at the age of 15 in 2002, the Military Commissions judge’s decision to allow the admissibility of a confession extracted under threat of death, the irony of the U.S. prosecuting Khadr for war crimes while sponsoring amnesty and rehabilitation for child soldiers in Africa, the purging of jurors who had any negative opinion on Guantanamo prison or U.S. foreign policy and the question of just who committed war crimes (Khadr—unarmed—was shot twice in the back).
Daphne Eviatar is a lawyer and freelance journalist whose work has appeared in the New York Times, The Nation, Legal Affairs, Mother Jones, the Washington Independent, The HuffingtonPost and many others. She is a Senior Reporter at The American Lawyer, Senior Associate in Law and Security for Human Rights First and was an Alicia Patterson Foundation fellow in 2005 and a Pew International Journalism fellow in 2002.
Scott Horton is the host of AntiWar Radio at the Liberty Radio Network, 95.9 FM in Austin, Texas and 88,3 FM in Riverside, Calif. As an associate editor at AntiWar.com, he also blogs there and at his site, The Stress Blog. Listen to his full interview achive, follow him on Twitter and Facebook, and donate to AntiWar.com here.
- “1st US Trial of ‘Child Soldier’ in Modern History Starts This Week at Gitmo” by Daphne Eviatar at The Huffington Post
- “U.S. Kangaroo Court Must Be Stopped” by Jason Ditz at the Toronto Star
- VIDEO: Khadr Show-’Trial’ Blacked Out of NY Times, So Obamaphiles Won’t Care
- Military Tribunal Testimony: Teenage Detainee Tortured, Threatened With Rape (Sayyid)