Hamdan Taken Out of Bush’s Hands

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Salim Hamdan, convicted earlier this week of providing material support for terrorism (a.k.a. being Osama bin Laden’s driver), has been sentenced to five and a half years. Because he’ll get credit for time served, he could be released in as few as six months. The government asked for 30 years of prison time.

The Bush Administration, which plays by a set of rules that exist only in its collective brain, made it clear before the verdict that it was prepared to continue detaining Hamdan even if he was found not guilty. Presumably, a Bush White House would keep Hamdan locked up well past the six month mark. But half a year of jail means that Hamdan is essentially John McCain or Barack Obama’s responsibility — statements from both explaining how they would handle Hamdan’s detention would be very interesting.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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