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‘Camp Justice’: Guantánamo’s ‘Child Soldier’ Pleads Guilty (From the President)
By Jim E. Lavine
Canadian Guantánamo detainee Omar Khadr pleaded guilty on Oct. 25 to
charges of murder, attempted murder, conspiracy, spying, and material
support of al Qaeda. Khadr was 15 years old when he was shot and
captured after a four-hour firefight in the Afghan village of Ayub Kheyl
in July 2002. He has spent more than a third of his life in U.S.
military detention, and until his plea, he faced the prospect of being
prosecuted in what NACDL believes to be a gravely flawed and
illegitimate military commission system with rules that heavily favor
the prosecution and a jury with the power to sentence him to life in
prison. And so the Guantánamo military commissions can now count an
ex-child soldier as its fifth conviction after two presidents and nine
After the plea hearing, the chief prosecutor, Navy Capt. John Murphy,
held a press conference. “Omar Khadr stands convicted of being a
murderer and convicted of being a terrorist,” Murphy proclaimed. “He was
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