[By Paul Logan, posted by G. Edwards]
I have been cleared to travel to the U.S. Naval Station at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba to observe, analyze, critique, and report on the U.S. Military Commission hearings against Mr. Abd al Hadi al-Iraqi (also known as Mr. Nashwan al-Tamir). He has been held at Guantanamo since 2007, and in 2014 he was charged with being a high-ranking member of al Qaeda Iraq and liaison with the Taliban, and accused of being responsible for deadly attacks in Afghanistan and Pakistan in 2003 and 2004.
I graduated with a J.D. from Indiana University McKinney School of Law in 1994, and am an employment lawyer in Indianapolis. When I was in law school, there were few international law opportunities for students. Several years after I graduated, the school founded its Program in International Human Rights Law (PIHRL), which for over 20 years has offered students and graduates many international opportunities. One of its projects is the Military Commission Observation Project, which sends faculty, staff, students, graduates to Guantanamo, after the program received special status from the Pentagon. I am thankful and excited about this opportunity!
On Sunday, 28 January 2018, I am scheduled to travel on a military flight from Andrews Air Force Base in Washington, D.C. to Guantanamo Bay. Motion hearings in Hadi’s case are scheduled to last all week. While a docket can be found on the military commission website at mc.mil, the website states that many of the documents are unavailable due to pending security review or confidentiality.
My preparation for the mission to Guantanamo has included reviewing several publications of the Program in International Human Rights Law. These include the Guantanamo Bay Fair Trial Manual: Excerpts, which has introduced to the relevant international and U.S. law, and introduced me to the Hadi case and the other pending Guantanamo Bay cases. I believe this publication will be very helpful as I seek to analyze, critique and report on my Guantanamo experiences.
The program also provided me with Know Before You Go To Guantanamo Bay: A Guide of Human Rights NGOs & Others Going to Gitmo To Attend U.S. Military Commission. This has also been very helpful.
I look forward to this opportunity learn more about the commissions, and to help the McKinney project by contributing to its Guantanamo Bay mission.
My trip to Washington, DC
I flew from Indianapolis to Washington, DC this morning (Saturday), and had a chance to do some sight-seeing in the city, and had an opportunity for briefing by Professor George Edwards, who was at Guantanamo Bay last week. He informed me that he will be traveling to Ft. Meade, Maryland on Monday the 29th of January to view the same Guantanamo Bay hearings I will view. I was told that the Guantanamo Bay courtroom where I will be on Monday has cameras that are broadcast live back to Ft. Meade.
I had a chance to have Eritrean food for the first time.
My plan for further blogging on the Guantanamo Bay trip.
I plan to draft another post related to my trip from Andrews to Guantanamo, and additional posts about the substance of the commission hearings this week.
Paul Logan, JD ‘94
Military Commission Observation Project
Program in International Human Rights Law
Indiana University McKinney School of Law
[Posted by G. Edwards on behalf of Mr. Paul Logan]