Gitmo Hearing on Hold After Prosecutors Threatened Defense Lawyer

Death penalty hearings against five Guantanamo Bay detainees were quickly shelved today, and the courtroom ordered “cleared” during the defense lawyer’s questioning of a former Gitmo prison commander Rear Admiral David Woods sparked an angry exchange with the prosecution.

Defense lawyer Commander Walter Ruiz was discussing the details of CIA input in controlling the detention center, as well as CIA restrictions on attorneys’ access to their clients. Woods plead ignorance on the matter, and Ruiz asked what intelligence organizations he knew of that were operating at Gitmo during his 10-month term as commander.

At that the Justice Department prosecutors ordered the hearings stopped, and warned Ruiz, in open court, that he was “playing with fire” in even asking those questions.

Ruiz, enraged, shot back that he “will not be threatened by the prosecution,” and went on to point out that there is a court security officer sitting right next to the judge who is supposed to be the one who decides if certain questions are verbotten. The officer didn’t say anything about it, and the prosecutors took Ruiz aside to threaten him some more, sparking him to reiterate his complaints.

The judge, Col. James Pohl, responded by ordering the courtroom cleared, and announced that a secret, closed-door session would be held to discuss the matter. What came of the session will, of course, remain a secret, and the death penalty cases will continue, with the detainees never to know what was said.

26 thoughts on “Gitmo Hearing on Hold After Prosecutors Threatened Defense Lawyer”

    The world is watching America (The Land Of The Free) pervert Justice.
    Where is the United Nations Human Rights Commission and ALL the others who are so quick to jump up and scream BLUE MURDER when Palestinian Children throw stones at heavily Armed Soldiers?

    1. Look: the world is been watching USA for ever and expected to change after Vietnam war.., but here is the trick question.., if USA Democratic Party, or for that matter republican party, the senate, the white house change to a functioning social political and economic system.., do you think that justice system in USA will change too and by itself close the Guantanamo knowing that such prison is against all the social and international laws.., that is to ask.., if you think that these entities of governments work for government or they have their own government governing themselves when they need to.., like state department, NSA, CIA and 20 other agencies as such.

    2. "…Where is the United Nations Human Rights Commission…" Because these so-called trials are being done as military tribunals on a military installation, they are not allowed to attend. That was the reason they were set up this way.

    3. Just as much corruption here as in the Nuremberg trials after WW2. America and Israel are far from the democracy's they claim to be and are even close to Communism.

        1. Actually, many people were summarily executed by the fascist Nazis. Plus, millions of Jews never got a chance under Hitler's fascist reign of terror.

  2. The nut cases who started this really screwed up, when will they admits it, someone needs to be made responsible for this Mess before it can end in justice.

  3. Well Jason, that is certainly a version of the events.
    Shame you weren't there and had to rely on the various Tweets you appear to have cobbled together to create a narrative that matches your worldview.

    1. Actually, if you follow the link provided to the McClatchy article, it looks like Jason is paraphrasing from that article, not tweets. I also believe that the author of the McClatchy peice is actually attending the performance, though I could be wrong.

  4. Before we question the legality and logical of the so-called trials, please examine the veracity of our government's description of events on 911.

    Is there any doubt that we live in a a police state that routinely abuses it's citizens, shreds the Constitution, and is populated by high officials and self-absorbed lackeys who believe they are above the law?

    So if ninety-nine percent of what they tell us is a lie, why should we assume anything they put forward related to 911, including this kangaroo court, is sincere, transparent and based on factual evidence.

    It is not. It never has been. Everything about the last decade has been an artificially constructed narrative to remove the last of our freedoms and give total control of this once proud country to a very, very select group of insiders and their vast army of underlings. As a result, they have run roughshod over a planet, killed millions, besmirched the name and honor of America and have left a legacy of hate and death all in the name of greed and concentrated wealth.

  5. I'm old enough to remember when it was the USSR which had the show trials and the kangaroo courts. If back then one had told American's that one day the same thing would be happening in the US they would probably have thought the idea ludicrous. In the last 10 years the US might have won some battles but it is the terrorists who are all but won the war, because they have made the US enemy to itself, and to its own political interests.

      1. Nam was as much an illegal war based on lies as all todays illegal wars. You were lied into believing you were doing something good like saving the world from Communism you were working for the same criminals as todays military's do. It's wild Russia is an example to today's America. I'm only 34 but remember when thing at least seemed the other way around. Unlike in your time with all the information available on the Net Military's should no the wars they are fighting are illegal and unconstitutional and based on fauls flags. They work for the corperations and Banks not for the people or freedoms. If you go around the world murdering your responsible because you at least no your government is tyranicle and criminal. Today's government's are the worlds biggest gangs brainwashing people into believing they are doing right well they destroy are country's and are children's futures.

      2. Mr Vietnan vet you were sent to murder 3million innocent people rape,bugger,torture,and shoot anything that moved poisened their land with agent orange,and America has always this way.

        1. He never denied it but merely pointed out how correct Mr. Davis was in his statement. For christs sake give people the benefit of "getting wise" or are you so pure and sinless? Besides, not everyone had the big picture until long after they'd left.

  6. We in africa were brought up hearing the mantra that america stands for freedom, but what we see today is gradual turning to stasi state. One thing US government should know is that nations have moved from bad to worst in a gradual way. The Refusal of US to see wrong doings in her acts makes her vulnerable to be recycle in the trash of history like other nations that have risen and gone.

  7. Another secret court session! Everything is secret except you'r private life in this country anymore!

  8. Let's hear Samantha Power opine at the UN about "human rights" in Gitmo, or Israel, or Libya (her favorite "no fly zone" and favorite home to her favorite jihadists), or Rwanda (whose President Paul Kagame has been committing genocide while his friend Susan Rice is deep-sixing the human rights reports condemning it), or with the Syrian rebels (who have publicized "kidney tartare" as the delicacy de jour).

    As for the secrecy game, who's fooling who. Anybody who has carefully followed the news and read between the lines knows of the CIA involvement with the Al Qaeda groups in Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa. So, why pretend that it doesn't exist or should be kept off limits? By the way, it would be nice to know who the prosecutors are. They should have to face the music and live for the rest of their lives in the court of public opinion for their advocacy of such blatant injustice.

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