Staff Changes

It now seems that DoD’s Office of Military Commissions, specifically those JAG officers who prosecute and defend detainees at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, might be but an afterthought. Although a case was decided by the U.S. Supreme Court as recently as last year (Hamdan v. Rumsfeld), the office’s director, Air Force Brig. Gen. Thomas L. Hemingway, has retired, and no successor has been named as of this writing. Most of the active duty officers are gone, replaced by reservists who cycle through every year or so. Six of the 13 full-time counselors on the defense staff will leave before November, according to the director of that office. It appears that Lt. Cmdr. Charles Swift, the lawyer in the Hamdan case, will retire and most likely pass the case to a not-yet-named replacement. Currently there are only two active cases, though in two separate rulings in early June, judges dismissed all charges against the two terrorist suspects.

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