After two years and one day of being detained by the U.S. military, Associated Press photographer Bilal Hussein was granted full amnesty by an Iraqi judicial panel yesterday. The panel unanimously decided to drop the last remaining criminal charge against the photographer, which concerned allegedly improper contacts he had with insurgents who murdered an Italian citizen, and it ordered Hussein "released immediately."
The Supreme Court heard oral arguments earlier today for two consolidated custody cases: Munaf v. Geren and Geren v. Omar. (I blogged about them last week.) In these cases, the Court will assess the Bush administration's assertion that the U.S.' participation in a multinational force -- even one dominated and led by American forces -- precludes U.S. citizens who are detained by U.S. military officials from filing habeas petitions in the United States.
During a conference call late yesterday afternoon, lawyers at the Brennan Center for Justice briefed the press on the details of two upcoming Supreme Court cases, Geren v. Omar and Munaf v. Geren. These so-called "war on terror cases" are what Jonathan Hafetz of the Brennan Center called "yet another chapter in the story of the administration's attempts to avoid judicial review, to avoid access to courts, and to create a prison beyond the law."
Monica Bejar, 37, lived in fear for over a decade. She came to the U.S. from Mexico illegally in 1989, and shortly thereafter married a permanent resident who turned violent and started drinking heavily during their first year of marriage. Over the years, her husband would offer to set her immigration papers straight, only to rip up the forms during bouts of rage.