• Thanks for stopping by. Logging in to a registered account will remove all generic ads. Please reach out with any questions or concerns.

Afghan Detainee Mega Thread

True, but some could say this is like a court of sorts - arms length and all that.  Besides, can you imagine the furor if it was found out that the work was actively BLOCKED during the campaign?  Can't win, really...
- Picture a gigantic earthquake hitting BC.  Kelowna is now oceanfront real estate...  We ask the world for help and the world responds with a multi-national force under UN charter.  Suddenly, a New Zealand CIMIC team operating in the US AOR catches two locals trying to hi-jack a truck carrying humanitarian supplies.  The SOP is to hand over the detainees to the local RCMP survivors, but rumour has it that the local Horse Police have adopted a few pragmatic procedures that violate both NZ and US police procedures, and the NZ Army - backed by the USA - refuse to hand over Canadian citizens, in Canada, to Canadian authorities...

NOW does everyone understand the question?


Edit: the question above is intended for those who don't understand the issue, not for those who do.

milnews.ca said:
I know it's been a bit, but here's some new developments - MERX listing for some "help needed" below.....

Heh...that listing has retired MP written all over it.  Wouldn't that be a fine how do you do!
Soldiers didn't abuse Afghan detainees, probe says
Nicole Baer, Canwest News Service  Published: Friday, October 03, 2008
Article Link

OTTAWA -- A military police investigation into allegation of abuse of three Afghan detainees by Canadian Forces soldiers has cleared the military of any wrongdoing.

The investigation by the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service "found no evidence that any of the three detainees were mistreated or abused during capture, detention or transfer to Afghan authorities," according to a report released Friday.

The investigation also found that the injuries sustained by one of the prisoners in the April 2006 incident occurred when the prisoner tried to seize a Canadian soldier's weapon.

"In light of the circumstances, it was concluded that CF [Canadian Forces] personnel applied reasonable force within the scope of their duties and acted in accordance with the rules of engagement," the report said.

Lt.-Col. Gilles Sansterre, the investigative service's commanding officer, said the service "spent considerable time and resources on this complex investigation."

"The investigation was a thorough process which included in excess of 100 interviews across Canada, the United States and the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan."

The investigators also determined that a second detainee sustained "minor scrapes when he attempted to escape by jumping over a steep embankment," noting that the injuries were actually sustained before the prisoner was transferred to the military police's custody.

"The third detainee sustained no injuries during the course of his capture," the report said.
More on link
Same story here on the CTV website.

Military police cleared of prisoner-abuse claims

Canadian military police did not abuse three suspected Taliban prisoners after they were captured in April 2006, an investigation has found.

The probe was conducted by the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service (CFNIS) after University of Ottawa law professor Amir Attaran launched a complaint in January 2007.

Attaran alleged that at least one, and as many as three, Afghan detainees taken captive by the Canadian Forces appeared "to have been beaten while detained and interrogated by them."

Attaran also claimed the men never received proper medical attention and were then handed off to the Afghan National Police.

Anybody think that Attaran will now admit that he was wrong,etc.?...don't think we
should hold our breath while we're waiting.
  He'll now have to move on to some other issue,real or invented,to try and further
his career.
I think Attran has already moved on....

was it not him (among others) spewing the garbage about Canadian soldiers condoning the abuse of young boys by the ANA and ANP, by ignoring the pratice....?
CF Statement and Backgrounder now posted....

A reminder:  more to come (sadly, more bones for the Attarans of the world to chew on)...
....Concurrent processes

There are two other processes underway on the same incident.

The Military Police Complaints Commission is conducting its own investigation following Professor Attaran’s complaints that Military Police should have investigated the injuries to the three detainees. Any further details would have to be addressed to the MPCC directly.

A National Defence Board of Inquiry (BOI) into in-theatre handling of detainees is also ongoing. The BOI is a much broader process that will look at many factors including whether changes to orders, directives, procedures and training are warranted. The BOI suspended its activities in June 9, 2008 to expedite the CFNIS disciplinary investigation. The Board will resume its inquiry now that the CFNIS investigation has concluded.

For further information, visit the National Defence Board of Inquiry (BOI) Website.....

GAP said:
Was it not him (among others) spewing the garbage about Canadian soldiers condoning the abuse of young boys by the ANA and ANP, by ignoring the pratice....?

That one appears to have been started rolling by a Chaplain.
I took the time to read the MPCC Chair's written Decision with regard to the Public Interest hearings and...I hate to admit it but I'm actually intrigued about where this is now going and his reasoning on why the MPCC does have jurisdiction in this case. 

I find it particularly interesting that there appears to be a disconnect between the MP Branch and others outside the Branch as to where Detainee/PW Handling lies within the scope of the Police Operations mandate.  The MP Branch stance is that Detainee/PW Handling is not a portion of the policing mandate but rather lies within the realm of traditional military operations whereas outside the Branch, the view by those already interviewed by the MPCC is that the Detainee/PW issue is within the realm of Policing.
- Historicaly, I do not believe MPs were used in our Detainee or POW Camps.  I believe that was the purvue of the Veterans Guard of Canada.  However, the MPs may have had a field role in securing the PWs into the rear areas, and the RCMP certainly did POW escorts on the CNR and CPR.
Historically the Canadian Provost Corps had four roles:

• Traffic control – including helping the Q Staff* with route planning;†

• Care and custody of all prisoners in the operational area;

• Operation of Canadian detention barracks;

• Assisting units in the maintenance of good order and discipline by e.g. running garrison guard rooms and patrolling occupied towns.

I believe the Provost Corps managed POW camps in Canada but they were guarded by the Veterans Guard – an auxiliary, reserve force of First World War veterans raised to guard vital points and POW camps.

In post war military plans, POWs were to be handed over to CProC detachments as quickly as possible – and after only cursory interrogation by unit intelligence personnel. Those MP detachments might operate as far forward as brigade admin areas. They would, very quickly, move POWs to safe, secure ‘cages’ where CIntC people would be able to interrogate them and examine their equipment.

In our planning for the Third World War (on the North German Plain (1950-1970)) we saw the traffic control function as being, far and away, the most important, but prisoner handling was also seen as a vital task and it was one for which the old 4CIBG/CMBG Provost Platoon trained assiduously – Canada did not want to be seen as a country that did not take exercise proper care and custody of its prisoners, not after how some of our s were treated by some German formations.

* Quartermaster General’s Staff – now the G -4
† Including e.g. calculating route capacity

E.R. Campbell said:
† Including e.g. calculating route capacity

- Using pretty much the same techniques and tables the Bde Recce Sqn has access to.  The Bde Recce Sqn and MP Pl often shared Tfc Control msns.
Shared in accordance with the Fair Dealings provisions of the Copyright Act.  Original article is at:  Charter doesn't protect Afghan prisoners: court

Afghan prisoners captured by Canadian troops and handed over to local authorities can't rely on the Charter of Rights to protect them from torture, says the Federal Court of Appeal.

In a unanimous ruling made public Thursday, a three-judge panel rejected a legal challenge by Amnesty International and the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association.

The human rights groups expressed "considerable dismay" at the ruling and issued a joint statement vowing to carry on their fight. They plan to file for leave to take the case to the Supreme Court of Canada.


So, this round goes to the side of sanity and reason.  Not a surprise in the least to see they now want to take to the SCC.
Wow, just seeing this again, almost as if for the first time.  I wonder what their argument was to even go forward to suggest that persons caught by us would be subject to the Charter?  I mean, enemy spies are subject to the Code of Service Discipline, but detainees?  Come on!
My question is: who is paying for this legal challenge by Amnesty International and the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association?

Who is bankrolling their lawyers, and why?
Amnesty International has chapters in a lot of countries.
These chapters have to ask for money from supporters and
to the public (they're considered as a charity in Canada,
so they can emitted charity permit) and send some money
to the headquarter (London England, I believe).

Usually, around the world, each country has the right to only
one chapter. They made an exception here in Canada, ''to
reflect the duality of the cultures'' or something like that.
So there is an anglophone chapter somewhere (Toronto?)
and a francophone one in Montréal.

But there is also a lot of ''clubs'' if you will in a lot of place : schools, citys, etc.
They receive informations from the local chapter on which human right to act
(send letters, make public noise about) (about prisonners of opinions, politicals
ones, etc) and try to raise money for the local chapter.
chapter or a particular right...

I think that cover some of yours questions  :p.
The AI fundraisers you see on the streets of Vancouver wearing a yellow AI vest are a company that solicits donations for a portion of the take, they don't advertise the fact to much.
Obama Upholds Detainee Policy in Afghanistan, NY Times, February 21, 2009

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration has told a federal judge that military detainees in Afghanistan have no
legal right to challenge their imprisonment there, embracing a key argument of former President Bush’s legal team.

In a two-sentence filing late Friday, the Justice Department said that the new administration had reviewed its position
in a case brought by prisoners at the United States Air Force base at Bagram, just north of the Afghan capital. The
Obama team determined that the Bush policy was correct: such prisoners cannot sue for their release.

“Having considered the matter, the government adheres to its previously articulated position,” wrote Michael F. Hertz,
acting assistant attorney general.

The closely watched case is a habeas corpus lawsuit on behalf of several prisoners who have been indefinitely detained
for years without trial. The detainees argue that they are not enemy combatants, and they want a judge to review the
evidence against them and order the military to release them.

The Bush administration had argued that federal courts have no jurisdiction to hear such a case because the prisoners
are noncitizens being held in the course of military operations outside the United States. The Obama team was required
to take a stand on whether those arguments were correct because a federal district judge, John D. Bates, asked the
new government whether it wanted to alter that position.

The Obama administration’s decision was generally expected among legal specialists. But it was a blow to human rights
lawyers who have challenged the Bush administration’s policy of indefinitely detaining “enemy combatants” without trials.

The power of civilian federal judges to review individual decisions by the executive branch to hold a terrorism suspect
as an enemy combatant was one of the most contentious legal issues surrounding the Bush administration. For years,
President Bush’s legal team argued that federal judges had no authority under the Constitution to hear challenges by
detainees being held at the military prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, and elsewhere.

The Supreme Court rejected the Bush administration’s legal view for prisoners held at Guantánamo in landmark rulings
in 2004 and 2006. But those rulings were based on the idea that the prison was on United States soil for constitutional
purposes, based on the unique legal circumstances and history of the naval base.

Rights lawyers have been hoping that courts would extend those rulings to allow long-term detainees being held at
United States military bases elsewhere in the world to sue for release, too. There are about 600 detainees at
Bagram and several thousand in Iraq.

Jack Balkin, a Yale Law School professor, said it was too early to tell what the Obama administration would end up
doing with the detainees at Bagram. He said some observers believed that the Obama team would end up making a
major change in policy but simply needed more time to come up with it, while others believed that the administration
had decided “to err on the side of doing things more like the Bush administration did, as opposed to really rethinking
and reorienting everything” about the detention policies it inherited because it had too many other problems to deal

“It may take some time before we see exactly what is going on — whether this is just a transitory policy or whether
this is really their policy: ‘No to Guantánamo, but we can just create Guantánamo in some other place,’ ” Mr. Balkin

After becoming president last month, Mr. Obama issued orders requiring strict adherence to antitorture rules and
shuttering the Guantánamo prison within a year. He also ordered a review of whether conditions there meet the
standards of humane treatment required by the Geneva Conventions, and a review of what could be done with
each of the 245 detainees who remain at the prison.

On Friday, government officials said that a Pentagon official had completed the Guantánamo report, concluding
that the site complies with the Geneva Conventions’ requirements for humane treatment — including procedures
for force-feeding prisoners on hunger strike by strapping them down and inserting a nasal tube, a practice prisoners’
lawyers have denounced. The report does recommend that some prisoners be given greater human contact, however.
'No US rights' for Bagram inmates, BBC News, February 21, 2009

Detainees being held at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan cannot use US courts to challenge their detention,
the US says. The justice department ruled that some 600 so-called enemy combatants at Bagram have no
constitutional rights.


Most have been arrested in Afghanistan on suspicion of waging a terrorist war against the US.

The move has disappointed human rights lawyers who had hoped the Obama administration would take
a different line to that of George W Bush. Prof Barbara Olshansky, the lead counsel in a legal challenge
on behalf of four Bagram detainees, told the BBC the justice department's decision not to reform the rules
was both surprising and "enormously disappointing".

The BBC's Kevin Connolly in Washington says the move has angered human rights lawyers, with one saying
the new White House was endorsing the view of the old one, that prisons could be created and run outside
the law.

It is certainly evidence that having set the tone for his administration by announcing plans to close Guantanamo
Bay, Mr Obama intends to adopt a much more cautious approach to the problem of detainees held elsewhere
by the US military, our correspondent says.

'Homicides admitted'

Last year, the US Supreme Court gave suspects held at the US Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, the right
to challenge their detention. Following that ruling, petitions were filed at a Washington district court on behalf
of four detainees at Bagram.  The judge then gave the new administration an opportunity to refine the rules
on appeals.

In a two-sentence filing, justice department lawyers said the new administration had decided not to change
the government's position. "Having considered the matter, the government adheres to its previously articulated
position," said acting assistant Attorney General Michael Hertz in papers filed at the court. The US justice
department argues that Bagram differs from Guantanamo Bay because it is in an overseas war zone and
prisoners there are being held as part of ongoing military action.

Prof Olshansky said the conditions at the Bagram facility, which is near the Afghan capital, Kabul, were worse
than those at Guantanamo Bay, adding that there was a lack of due process available to detainees. "The situation
in Bagram is so far from anything like meeting the laws of war or the human rights treaties that we're bound to,"
she told the BBC. "There are no military hearings where the detainees can present evidence," she added. "Torture
has led to homicides there that have been admitted by the US." "It's quite a severe situation, and yet the US is
planning a $60m new prison to hold 1,100 more people there."

The US military considers Bagram detainees unlawful combatants who can be detained for as long as they are deemed
a threat to Afghan national security.
This out from the Military Police Complaints Commission:
.... The Commission’s report issued today concludes there was no harm done to the detainees while in military police custody and the injured Afghans were provided with a high standard of medical care.

However, the report criticizes military police for failing to investigate the cause of head injuries to one of the detainees when it was their duty to do so. There is no evidence to suggest a cover-up, according to the Commission, but the report does point to a general failure by military police to understand their duties and responsibilities, to respect the directions set by the Canadian Forces Provost Marshal (CFPM), and to meet the expectations of senior operational commanders in Afghanistan.

In its most far-reaching finding, the MPCC maintains that the measures taken in response to the 1997 Somalia Inquiry report “…have not been fully successful in structuring, positioning and resourcing the military police to enable performance at the required standard…”

The Commission concludes its report by recommending further study into the status and role of the military police to develop a more complete command and control structure, to enhance the overall working relationship between leadership in the military police and the broader Canadian Forces, and to improve training and resourcing for military police ....

Entire report here (77 pg. 1.9 MB .pdf).