‘Eight years of inaction and failure’

Thursday, July 15, 2010 – Globe and Mail
ANNA MEHLER PAPERNY

Few people would want Jeffrey Colwell’s job.

The 44-year-old Marine colonel, career officer and father of three boys was tapped earlier this year to lead the defence team for terrorism suspects being tried at the Guantanamo Bay military tribunals. That puts him in charge of the dozens of lawyers representing the most notorious prisoners in the world, in the most notorious and controversial prison in the world.

This week was Col. Colwell’s first taste of Omar Khadr’s case, at a truncated and chaotic pretrial hearing for the Canadian charged with murder and conspiracy to engage in terrorism.

And he loves the gig.

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Defiant Khadr says he will boycott ‘sham process’

Tuesday, July 13, 2010
ANNA MEHLER PAPERNY

GUANTANAMO BAY, CUBA — After eight years in U.S. custody, Omar Khadr had the floor.

Appearing in a courtroom at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, the Canadian terror suspect publicly explained himself in his own words for the first time Monday morning, condemning the military commission set to try him as a “sham process” so divorced from legal norms that he’s as well trained to defend himself as any lawyer.

“The unfairness of the rules will make a person so depressed that he will admit to any allegations or take a plea offer that will satisfy the U.S. government,” he said.

Guantanamo Bay’s youngest inmate, and its only Canadian, spoke more forcefully and at greater length than ever before. The 23-year-old expressed his contempt not only for the military tribunal, but for a plea deal offered to him within the past month.

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