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Former Intel Engineer Pleads Guilty To Taliban Aid 1449

Posted by simoniker
from the not-as-originally-appeared dept.
theodp writes "Following up on an earlier Slashdot story, software engineer Maher "Mike" Hawash pleaded guilty Wednesday to conspiring to provide services to the Taliban, agreeing to testify against other suspects in exchange for the dropping of other terrorism charges. He will serve at least seven years in federal prison under the deal. In March, federal agents seized Hawash from a parking lot outside Intel Corp., where he worked, and held him as a material witness until charges were filed five weeks later."
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Former Intel Engineer Pleads Guilty To Taliban Aid

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  • by gfody (514448) * on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:33PM (#6631065)
    look at him [foxnews.com].. I don't mean to come off as a racist or anything, but seriously. when you are in fact a terrorist, wouldn't it make sense to sharpen up a little, maybe try and cut down on the co-worker-thinks-im-a-terrorist-because-i-look-lik e-this factor?
    • reminds me of Stallman...
    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:51PM (#6631250)
      So you're asking him to go against his religious beliefs so that YOU can feel safer? (ok so he WAS a terrorist.. but not everyone with scrappy looking beards are, some are just trying to make a living like you and I)
    • Weird (Score:5, Informative)

      by autopr0n (534291) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @10:22PM (#6631549) Homepage Journal
      He obviously hasn't been shaving or something since he's been in jail. He hasn't always [freemikehawash.org] looked like that.
    • by Moridineas (213502) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @11:00PM (#6631823) Journal
      Just FWIW, it's pretty much required for Muslim men to grow beards. Actually, the four legal schools disagree on specifics, but I think the agreed upon length of beard is one fist away from the face. It's more than tradition.

    • Is THIS the kind of people taking our tech jobs away?!?

      Man I must have the wrong approach to looking for work. They are looking for diversifying. I'll put gay nymphomaniac Siberian on my resume.
    • by Eric Seppanen (79060) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @11:23PM (#6631968)
      Funny how the courtroom sketch [katu.com] of him doesn't look like that at all. Not really worth picking on Fox News, though. CNN and lots of other news sites are using the same photo with the evil beard.
    • by Rolo Tomasi (538414) on Thursday August 07, 2003 @12:41AM (#6632375) Homepage Journal
      Dude, you don't wanna look pretty when you're in prison.
  • by thoolie (442789) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:35PM (#6631080) Homepage
    Could someone explain why people are comparing the Talaban to Al Queda? To my knowledge, the Talaban was a ruling party of a country that had a military as well as all other aspects of governmental control. This would make individuals who helped and served under them solders or agents (spies, commandos, ect...). The Talaban is not a Terrorist Organization. So why are people who helped them being comared and tried as terrorists? I know they harbored Al Queda, but so did/does Pakistan/Saudi/Iran/EUA/Malaysia/ect...

    I have just been wondering, those guys don't care about the US, the just want to make sure they don't alow their kids to eat pork or their wives to be seen in public, (that does not make them terrorists. Wacky, yes, terrorists, no).

    ??
    • Furthermore... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by thoolie (442789)
      From the article;

      "Hawash pleaded guilty to conspiring to provide services to the Taliban"

      If I lend my serviced to Germany to help them fight France as a german agent, am I then a terrorist? No. I would be captured. I would then be help as a POW. (or killed and thrown in a ditch...). After the war (it ended a while ago), I would return home (unless i commited war crimes, aka Mengela.

      I think we need to start seperating Governments from Terrorist organizations. The USSR was never a Terrorist Organization, y
      • Re:Furthermore... (Score:5, Informative)

        by YU Nicks NE Way (129084) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:52PM (#6631264)
        Actually, you are right. You wouldn't have been a terrorist. You'd have been a covert agent of an enemy power -- a spy. You would not have been held as a POW; you would have been held as an irregular combatant. Guess what? The Geneva conventions don't protect irregular combatants. Combatant nations are not legally bound to return irregular combatants to their countries of origin when conflict ends.

        If you weren't shot out of hand, you'd have spent the rest of your life in a French jail, along with the other collaborators.
        • Re:Furthermore... (Score:3, Informative)

          by EinarH (583836)

          Guess what? The Geneva conventions don't protect irregular combatants. Combatant nations are not legally bound to return irregular combatants to their countries of origin when conflict ends.

          Wrong.

          First; there is under international law in this area (the Geneeva Convention, which USA signed and ratified) any category as "irregular combatants" or the often used "unlawful combatant". Classifying a person as such a thing is actually in itself a violation of the Geneva Convention.
          However there are categorys

    • by kfg (145172)
      That is correct. The Taliban != Government.

      They were only recognized as such by three countries out of the whole wide world. It wouldn't take many guesses to get all three.

      The Taliban was a revolutionary force seeking to oust the legitimate governement recognized by the rest of the world. They held no aspects of government control but operated territory under their sway ( which never even amounted to a clear majority of territory) under pure martial law. They had no civil police. No civil law for such civ
    • by elmegil (12001) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:51PM (#6631255) Homepage Journal
      Could someone explain why people are comparing the Talaban to Al Queda?

      Because the Talaban sheltered Al Quaeda, provided them land to build training camps, and refused to give up their leadership even after the attacks of 9/11?

      I think that their direct support of Bin Laden makes a clear case that they are culpable for terrorism. And I don't even agree with the war on Iraq or any of the dozens of stupid things the Feds have done in the name of defending us from terrorism.

      • by Sanity (1431) *
        I think that their direct support of Bin Laden makes a clear case that they are culpable for terrorism
        Yeah, those that trained Bin Laden should indeed be punished. Oh wait, that would be the CIA - I guess the world isn't black and white after all.
        • by Zoop (59907) on Thursday August 07, 2003 @12:06AM (#6632204)
          Yeah, those that trained Bin Laden should indeed be punished. Oh wait, that would be the CIA - I guess the world isn't black and white after all.

          Sigh. The world does have some gradation in shading, however.

          Repeat after me: The CIA never funded Osama bin Laden.

          He's a freakin' multi-billionaire, he didn't need the funds.

          They funded other groups such as those led by Abdul Haq who cooperated with bin Laden in ousting the Sovs. However, those groups didn't agree with the Taliban, which Osama supported, and so most of them were killed or fled the country. In fact, Haq was killed when he went into Afghanistan to try to rally people around him. If you want to blame the CIA for something, try for not supporting Haq or hooking up with the military to get him out when he realized he was being surrounded.

          The CIA has much to be ashamed of, you don't have to invent stuff because it helps your immediate rhetorical need.
          • by davecl (233127) on Thursday August 07, 2003 @06:34AM (#6633531)
            The man said those that trained Bin Laden should indeed be punished. Oh wait, that would be the CIA .

            The word was 'trained' not 'funded', and I don't know anyone who is denying that the CIA trained him.

            So please address the point that was made, not the one you'd like to answer.
    • by mnmn (145599) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @10:54PM (#6631783) Homepage
      I will begin by trying to define 'terrorist'. Anyone who terrorizes anyone else is a terrorist. That means the US ventures in Vietnam and Iraq where they tried to intimidate the civilians to drop support to their governments is just as terrorist as say the USSR trying to invade Afghanistan. So a government can be a terrorist organisation and all current governments are except some small ones ruling city states without their armies. Next, the Taliban were a political group. They also represent an extremist thinking. They supported the Al Qaeda because of what they believed, not because they wanted to terrorize US citizens. They were terrorists because they terrorized Afghans. By the way Al Qaeda and the Taliban both killed more civilians in Afghanistan each, than Al Qaeda did on 9/11. They also fought for years trying to take over Afghanistan fully but never really did. One well-known former CIA chief testified in his book that the Taliban were created by US funds during the Soviet occupation years to create a strong religious resistance against USSR. Couple these facts with the fact that few people in Afghanistan ever supported the Taliban, and they were mostly composed of Pakistani army, that hardly makes the Taliban Afghan, let alone Al Qaeda. A terrorist to some is a freedom fighter to others. People in foreign countries who supported the Taliban were usually sincere to their own countries and never supported them as a Threat to America or Democracy. They never knew of the Taliban's antics within Afghanistan. A Pakistani-British kid raised in London was caught among the Taliban when the Americans came, and was interviewed. He joined because he thought he would be fighting the Russians defending Islam. He didnt know there would be cries of "Allah o Akbar" from both sides of the hill. Most people in Pakistan under the current Taliban propaganda still believe the Taliban should rightfully be in Afghanistan without knowing who the enemy is exactly. Such is the sorry state of affairs of the region. I will just ask everyone to:
      1. Never hate anyone single-mindedly. Information is skewed in every media and the world out there can be radically different.
      2. Never sling around a word without completely understanding its definition and checking how it applies to yourself. Words like WMD, terrorist and wacky are some.
      3. never treat anyone like the plague because he supported someone else. Many people even in America still defend communism, many others have strong religious affiliations of all sorts. None of them are absolutely evil, and evil only lies in the eyes of the beholder.
      4. never support any form of government to the extreme that you impose it on others. Face it, democracy is a total failure in poorer countries where people only vote for the person most seen on TV, which is the richest politician around. The communists were in the same shoes a few years ago.
      5. never assume yourself, your country or your religion to be the center of gravity of humanity. The Germans tried that half a century ago. Ask them how they feel now. Anyone is a savage/terrorist/evildoer/moron/unintelligent to someone else.
      6. never start a political debate on slashdot. Ever.
      7. Profit!
  • by Shenkerian (577120) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:37PM (#6631094)
    Whatever else people will say about this guy, he did not get what he deserved. Everything after and including his arrest was fair and deserved, but the five weeks of being held as a material witness were complete bullshit. The officials abused the statute to hold him indefinitely and complete their case research. If it hadn't received the media attention it did, they probably would have held him longer before finally arresting him.
    • by Jason Earl (1894) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:54PM (#6631293) Homepage Journal

      Exactly. Just because this guy really was a terrorist doesn't mean that the Feds will have fingered the right guy when the come to get you. If the Federales can't bust a criminal without giving them the benefit of due process then I would rather have that criminal out on the street. I would rather have seen Mike walk than to have the government hold him for several weeks without arresting him. Due process is part of what makes the U.S. a good place to live.

      That being the case, this will probably work out in Mike's favor as it gave him the opportunity to be a "witness" instead of a suspect. Seven years in prison is a pretty lenient sentence for conspiring with terrorists.

  • by A Commentor (459578) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:37PM (#6631097) Homepage
    On his Free Mike Hawash site [freemikehawash.org], they still have paypal donations links, and statements about his 'innocence'. I wonder how much money they racked it.
    • by Sanity (1431) * on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @10:20PM (#6631523) Homepage Journal
      With the threats they probably used against him he would probably have said that black was white if they wanted him to. The list of those that agree to pleas but later are proven innocent is longer than most people might imagine. Consider being given the choice of pleading guilty and serving 5 years, or fighting it out in what must at this point appear to him as a frighteningly hostile environment, and serving 20 - what would you do, guilty or not?
    • I don't know what you are insinuating, but yeah, they are probablly all in it only for his money.
      Their whole life they planned this. All his friend thought this out; convincing Mike to support and fight for Taliban. Taking uni degrees and getting jobs in the communiyty close to him, lurking around him for the whole purpose of becoming his friends etc.

      But it was all a giant scam; through the support side and the extremly lucerative Paypal system they planned to "rack in" money. Doing this they planned and

  • by UnderScan (470605) <jjp6893@netscapePARIS.net minus city> on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:37PM (#6631110)
    From the news bit:
    "You and the others in the group were prepared to take up arms, and die as martyrs if necessary, to defend the Taliban. Is this true?" U.S. District Judge Robert E. Jones asked Hawash during the hearing.

    "Yes, your honor," Hawash replied.

    I had really hoped that the US Gov was wrong for nabbing a US citizen. I had hoped that there would be a suite against the gov for violating civil rights.
    But Damn!
    This doesn't look good.
    • Rubbish (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Sanity (1431) * on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @10:38PM (#6631671) Homepage Journal
      That is no more damning than when a captured US soldier is forced to denounce the actions of their government by their captors. We have no idea what kind of threats were made against that guy before his "confession" was extracted.
    • by ameoba (173803) on Thursday August 07, 2003 @01:47AM (#6632653)
      It doesn't really matter; Ernesto Miranda, of "Miranda Rights" fame, kidnapped a girl and raped her. Even though he was later re-tried and convicted, the Supreme Court decision set a legal precident.

      While a convicted felon loses some of their rights, until the point of their conviction they've got all of their rights and should still be treated as such until a conviction is reached. Innocence or guilt are irrelevant when it comes to imporoper imprisonment.
  • by Faizdog (243703) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:41PM (#6631153)
    Soo many people had rallied around him because of the problems minorities (especially Muslim ones) face in today's conditions. Unfortunately because he has pleaded guilty, next time people will just assume the person is guilty, and they won't rally around the new person, even though he/she may be innocent.

    Mark my words, there will be innocents who get caught up, and due to cases like this people will be reluctant to support them. Sad.
    • What the? The Feds arrested a guy for something incriminating. He admitted to it in a court of law. Guilty. Over.

      Why does this mean innocents are going to go down? Jesus, can the Slashdot crowd get any more clueless? You people, which I somehow am one of, can't accept the fact that law enforcement has a purpose especially when it involves a "geek." Wake up and smell the latte, folks. The bad guys, and I'm not talking about the blackhats, aren't going to wear armbands and shirts with epaulets and stand opp

  • by AvantLegion (595806) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:45PM (#6631190) Journal
    ... Intel supports terrorism. Buy AMD.

  • The others (Score:3, Interesting)

    by heli0 (659560) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:50PM (#6631247)
    The other 5 that have been charged so far have all plead not-guilty. How many of them will change their plea now that Hawash has agreed to testify against them?
  • by Frodrick (666941) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:55PM (#6631306)
    After having weasel DOJ lawyers wave "possible life inprisonment" and "possible execution" in his face every day for the past 4 months - possibly even threatening to deport his family - of course he pleaded guilty to a 7 year sentence. They probably threatened to delay the trial that long and just leave him in jail - or send him to concentration camp X-Ray.

    I, for one, don't know if he is guilty or innocent, but I sure-as-hell am not going to believe a plea bargain arragement. Most of you predicted that the Patriot Act would be used in exactly that way - to force plea agreements.

    As far as I am concerned, the government's case remains unproven.

  • Conspiracy? (Score:3, Informative)

    by FsG (648587) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @09:55PM (#6631308)
    The whole thing reeks of a gov't conspiracy. At least, his friends and coworkers seem to think so [freemikehawash.org].
  • Wow (Score:4, Insightful)

    by dtfinch (661405) * on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @10:36PM (#6631660) Journal
    It's a good thing I didn't make a donation at http://www.freemikehawash.org/ when this first came out.

    But guilty or not, it didn't seem right for him to be held in prison for several months without being charged, calling him a "material witness". One could say they forced his confession, because they admittedly weren't going to let him out until they heard what they wanted.
    • Re:Wow (Score:5, Insightful)

      by the-build-chicken (644253) on Thursday August 07, 2003 @12:41AM (#6632376)
      There are others _still_ being held that way...if you're an american, do something about it...your government is holding people against the rules of your own constitution...not even granting them basic rights of the geneva convention (enemy combatants? what the hell is that?)...almost 2 years they've been locked up without even access to a lawyer and they're still haven't been charged with anything...if this is 'by the people, for the people'...then you have a lot of really cruel and hypocritical people in your country...for god sake...make some noise about this!
  • by Bueller_007 (535588) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @10:42PM (#6631688)
    "...held him as a material witness until charges were filed five weeks later."

    Is anyone else disturbed by this?
  • by Snoopy77 (229731) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @10:45PM (#6631711) Homepage
    The FOX article was pretty light on but I'm guessing your new Patriot Act helped hold him for so long. Somewhere else on /. a poster said that a judge signed off on holding him as a material witness. Surely you guys have a seperation of powers? Your judiciary decides who's guilty and innocent on the facts available. Why is a judge deciding whether or not a man can be held without charge? Seems like a rubber stamp to me.

    It seems like the executive is getting permission to do something from someone who does not have the power to give that permission. Yes, the legislature may have granted the judiciary the power but it does not fall under normal judicial powers, totally circumvents due process and, I would guess, would be unconstitutional.

    Well at least he's better of that the guys living in dog kennels at Guantanamo Bay.
    • Generally, a jury of one's peers decides guilt or innocence. The judge's job is to preside over the trial process, ensure all the rules are obeyed, and mete out a sentence. The judge's other job is to decide on the legality of certain police measures, and issue warrants when necessary.

      Yes, in their role as the watchdog over the policemen's shoulder, judges can be both our friends and our enemies. Judges are people, and people are either good or bad. Good judges use their power wisely; bad judges abuse thei
  • by rjh (40933) <rjh@sixdemonbag.org> on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @11:35PM (#6632042)
    Please, please, please, for the love of Bob, people, think a little bit before you go about saying "he just plead guilty because he was looking at 20-to-life, we don't actually know what he did."

    There's a special kind of plea you use when you're taking a conviction on lesser charges out of fear that you're looking at a much greater time if you're convicted on the original charges. It's called an Alford plea, closely related to a nolo contendre plea.

    Nolo has been expressed in layman's terms as "I didn't do it, judge, and I'll never do it again!" You neither admit guilt nor protest your innocence. As a result, many judges refuse to enter nolo pleas; they demand that you either admit or deny responsibility, and if you insist on nolo a "not guilty" plea will be entered instead.

    An Alford plea is a far different thing. An Alford, in layman's terms, is "Judge, I didn't do it, but I'm terrified of the original charges and I think they could convict me on it." An Alford plea allows you to formally and legally protest your own innocence, while at the same time stipulating that the government could convict you if it went the whole nine yards, and thus avail yourself of the plea bargain.

    Mike Hawash didn't plead either nolo or Alford.

    Mike Hawash plead guilty.

    Guilty, as in "yes, Your Honor, I fucking did it! "

    Could we please, please, please stop seeing these self-important, self-aggrandizing rants from Damn-the-Man slashdotters who don't even care to learn about the difference between a guilty plea and an Alford plea, and why it's so significant that Hawash didn't plead Alford?
    • by WhaDaYaKnow (563683) on Thursday August 07, 2003 @01:40AM (#6632623)
      Could we please, please, please stop seeing these self-important, self-aggrandizing rants from Damn-the-Man slashdotters who don't even care to learn about the difference between a guilty plea and an Alford plea, and why it's so significant that Hawash didn't plead Alford?

      Which lawyer did he get, to explain this theory (which I've never heard of as a foreigner that has lived in this country for a quite while) to him while he was not allowed to contact the outside world?

      I don't consider a confession of someone who has not been allowed a proper trial worth anything.
    • by Lulu of the Lotus-Ea (3441) <mertz@gnosis.cx> on Thursday August 07, 2003 @02:19AM (#6632758) Homepage
      There is not a chance in hell the the DOJ would have allowed a nolo or Alford plea in this case. If Hawash had agreed to anything other than a guilty plea, he'd by in Gitmo now (and for longer than 7 years, probably), without the feds bothering with specific charges. And as others upthread have written, probably his family would be rounded up for deportation in "secret evidence" against them.

      Repeat after me: THIS IS NOT A NORMAL CRIMINAL CASE.
    • by geekotourist (80163) on Thursday August 07, 2003 @03:34AM (#6633009) Journal
      Well, assuming in this case that he had access to a lawyer to tell him about Alford [something Padilla hasn't had access to: talking with a lawyer'd ruin his Stockholm-syndrome dependence on his interrogators- really, the gov't admitted this], the lawyer'd only tell him to do this if the lawyer was incompetent. He does have a lawyer, who probably told M.H. that he didn't have a choice. Why would the government allow Alford here? It would make the gov't look bad, and that isn't acceptable.

      Quoting from the [oft referenced here but should be re-read. If you can read it without fear, why?] article on Why the Lackawanna 6 pled guilty [washingtonpost.com]:

      "The federal government implicitly threatened to toss the defendants into a secret military prison without trial, where they could languish indefinitely without access to courts or lawyers.


      That prospect terrified the men. They accepted prison terms of 6 1/2 to 9 years.

      "We had to worry about the defendants being whisked out of the courtroom and declared enemy combatants if the case started going well for us," said attorney Patrick J. Brown, who defended one of the accused. "So we just ran up the white flag and folded. Most of us wish we'd never been associated with this case."
      Yup, thats the system I learned about in civics class:

      The government can choose to give you access to the Bill of Rights unless it really need you to be guilty. In that case the Posse'll just come on by to take you away. Oh, and when the BoR says that "persons" get these rights they really meant "upstanding uncriminal citizens-by-birth and taxpayers" so it doesn't apply to YOU.

      Can some biologist please, PLEASE gene-mod a frog so that it'll actually hang out in ever-warming water so that I can use that cliched, false but I still want to use it proverbial frog in a pot analogy now?

  • by 73939133 (676561) on Wednesday August 06, 2003 @11:53PM (#6632140)
    Hawash pleaded guilty to conspiring to provide services to the Taliban. Prosecutors agreed to drop charges of conspiring to levy war against the United States and conspiring to provide material support for terrorism.

    Plea bargains are a travesty of justice. Telling someone "we can prosecute you for a crime on which there is the death penalty, or you can plead guilty to a lesser charge" creates a grave risk of making the innocent plead guilty. This is really not all that different from the interrogation and torture techniques used by the inquisition or totalitarian governments. Furthermore, it allows the guilty to get away with lesser charges.

    I think the utilitarian argument for these kinds of arrangements doesn't work: no matter how many criminals we catch through plea bargains or how many crimes we prevent, the cost of such arrangements--sacrificing a fair trial and a thorough, public examination of the charges and evidence--is just too high. Plea bargains are killing the patient in order to save him.

    "You and the others in the group were prepared to take up arms, and die as martyrs if necessary, to defend the Taliban. Is this true?" U.S. District Judge Robert E. Jones asked Hawash during the hearing.

    This, too, is rather chilling. It's not that conspiracy might not be a prosecutable crime under some circumstances, and maybe this is one of them. But in this phrasing, he didn't actually admit to doing anything, he was just "prepared to do" something.
  • While the Taliban was in power, the US gave quite a bit of aid and assistance to them. [womensenews.org] After all, they were our buddies- they were going to crack down on drugs! It's easy to turn a blind eye to everything and anything else that the US supposedly stands for, provided they tell us they'll crack down on opium production.

    I mean, it's a well known fact that the US can never do any wrong- so, why is this guy going to jail?

    Perhaps we should put this retarded administration on trial, along with the schmucks in previous administrations who thought it was a good idea to put a bunch of folks through Terrorism for Dummies, CIA Edition. Hell, perhaps we could even go so far as to look at our current actions- the CIA sponsors guerilla training like that given to our buddie Osama in a number of countries. You see, when the US wants something from some un-developed nationn we train a bunch of locals to despose the current dictator and put one in that is more to our liking... It's usually about getting some resource that the other guy didn't feel like sharing. Oil? COULDN'T BE!

    USA! USA! USA!
  • I am leaving the US (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Sanity (1431) * on Thursday August 07, 2003 @01:11AM (#6632511) Homepage Journal
    As an Irish citizen living in the US - I have decided that it is time to leave this country - it is starting to look, smell, and act as Germany did during the 1930s. I wish you Americans luck in regaining civilized justice in your broken country, if not, I hope that the EU will be accepting of political refugees from this brave but failed experiment.
  • by PizzaFace (593587) on Thursday August 07, 2003 @02:10AM (#6632727)
    The Washington Post just ran a pair of articles on the Lackawanna Six [washingtonpost.com] and Jose Padilla [washingtonpost.com], American citizens who got associated with bad guys. The Lackawanna Six (and John Walker Lindh and now Mike Hawash) pleaded guilty to avoid the fate that befell Padilla. When the government didn't have enough evidence to charge him with a crime, they simply designated him an enemy combatant and carted him off to a military prison, with no right to trial or to a lawyer. Hawash, Lindh and the Lackawanna Six chose prison, even though the evidence against them was weak, because the alternative was indefinite solitary confinement and possibly even a death sentence from a military tribunal. So how meaningful were their guilty pleas?

    We have laws in this country to punish treason, conspiracy, or any other crime these men committed. But citizens charged with those crimes have rights, like the right to be convicted by the government's evidence. So far, this administration has been unwilling to take the chance of letting a defendant exercise those rights.

What is now proved was once only imagin'd. -- William Blake

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