Saturday, March 29, 2008

This is another example of why I haven't lost faith

I trust the officer corps. I trust them because I know some damned fine representatives of that particular group of people, including a couple of JAG officers I have had the privilege to call friends and neighbors over the years.

On Thursday the JAG lawyer who is representing Salim Ahmed Hamdan in his upcoming appearance before a military tribunal on a charge of transporting explosive devices filed a brief charging that the Pentagon is timing prosecutions of terror suspects to influence the November elections.

The brief filed Thursday by Navy Lt. Cmdr. Brian Mizer directly challenged the integrity of President Bush's war court.

Notably, it describes a Sept. 29, 2006, meeting at the Pentagon in which Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England, a veteran White House appointee, asked lawyers to consider Sept. 11, 2001, prosecutions in light of the campaign.

''We need to think about charging some of the high-value detainees because there could be strategic political value to charging some of these detainees before the election,'' England is quoted as saying.

The brief filed by Lt. Cmdr. Mizer is the latest in a series of setbacks to the military commissions system and challenges the basic legality of the tribunals.

For the most part, it looks to me like the JAG corps are the real heroes in this mess that aWol made. They seem to have taken it upon themselves to form a line and hold it. They are operating in the interest of Justice, not in the interest of politics.

And so long as the officer corps does not abandon the Honor Code, we have a fighting chance to save the republic.