Tuesday, August 25, 2009

It's not about Khadr. It's about us.

CTV News reported:

Omar Khadr's lawyer says his client is being unfairly punished by the Conservative government, which has steadfastly refused to request his repatriation from Guantanamo Bay despite court rulings ordering it to do so.

Earlier this month, the Federal Court of Appeal upheld a lower court ruling in Khadr's favour and ruled the government must move to bring Khadr home.

On Tuesday, Ottawa confirmed it will fight the decision and take the case all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada.

Khadr's Canadian lawyer Denis Edney said he is mystified by the government's continued refusal to bring Khadr home.

"Every Western country that has had a detainee in Guantanamo Bay has simply requested that their detainees come home, and that has happened," Edney told CTV News Channel
emphasis is mine].

Khadr is accused of lobbing a grenade that killed a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan in 2002, when he was 15. In seven years in Guantanamo Bay, he has not gone through a trial.

Edney said his client should be treated as a child soldier, noting that Canada donates millions to help rehabilitate child soldiers from countries like Sierra Leone, because it considers them to be victims.

"And yet Omar Khadr is not afforded any protection from Canada. It boggles my mind, I just see it as a mean-spirited government that selects what type of Canadian it wishes to assist," he said.
The Government of Canada is saying justice should take its course.

Justice Conservative style.

Even some Conservatives privately admit they have been taken aback by Harper’s utter indifference to pleas about Khadr’s plight."

Besides it's a move which is likely to waste a lot of taxpayers' money. I'd be willing to give odds that the Supreme Court of Canada will uphold the judgments of the lower courts.

Most importantly, it's not primarily about Khadr.

Above all it's about us and the kind of country and society we wish to live in.