My new hero

I don’t say this lightly.  I say this with a joyful heart and tears in my eyes.  Seriously.  This isn’t hyperbole.

Judge Ricardo Urbina, Federal District Court

Judge Ricardo Urbina, Federal District Court

This man you see, Judge Ricardo M. Urbina of Federal District Court, a Clinton appointee, is my new hero.  He has ordered that a group of 17 Guantanamo detainees be produced before him for release.  This is the first ruling of this kind in nearly seven years of legal wrangling over the rights of detainess at Gitmo. 

All of these men, these detainees, are members of the Uighur Muslim minority from China and literally cannot return to China because they fear for their lives.  They were in Afghanistan as political refugees and were swept into Afghan detention camps in 2001 in error.  There is no other country which will accept them for fear of retribution from China, so they will be released to the care of other Uighur Muslims living in the US.

This case was brought before Judge Urbina under the ruling by the Supreme Court which restored the detainees habeas corpus rights and it comes after the government has admitted that it has no evidence that these men are a threat to the United States.  Judge Urbina challenged the government’s assertions that he has no right to free these detainees and warned against any further delay tactics.  He also made clear that no other agencies (immigration, for instance) should try and arrest the men upon their release.

I am thankful for Judge Urbina’s courage and wisdom and I fervently hope that other Judges follow his lead in future habeas corpus cases brought on behalf of Guantanamo Bay detainees.  Don’t go crazy:  there are certainly a few at Gitmo who may need to be brought to further justice.  But there are many who should be freed or, at the least, released to their home countries.  Judge Urbina has opened the door to this process and, for this, he is my new hero.


Filed under guantanamo bay

7 responses to “My new hero

  1. Kathy

    I respectfully disagree with you. This Judge is releasing into the United States some men who have trained with al Qaeda and the Taliban. Is he asking for another terrorist attack here? Sounds like it. Let them relocate to his neighborhood. I sure don’t want them in mine. No other country will allow these criminals in their company, we shouldn’t either!!

  2. ashpolitics

    Our government, which is loathe to admit that anyone at Gitmo is innocent, has indeed admitted on several occasions that it can find no evidence to indict these men and no reason to hold them. And yet they are concerned about the precendent the release will set. Armenia has accepted four of these refugees, but will not accept these men simply because it fears retribution from China, with whom the Uighur sect has a long standing feud. These men are not criminals, but refugees who were in the wrong place at the wrong time. If they are angry at America, it is our fault, but they are not terrorists and we have no reason to fear them. Being Muslim is not a crime and we should not treat it as such.

  3. Scott

    Having worked with Judge Urbina when he was a DC Superior Court Judge, I have first hand experience and knowledge of the kind of man and judge he is. He is a man of high ethical and moral character. He has a keen intellect and thorough understanding of the law. I admire his courage and willingness to stand up for what he believes is right under the law. I hope and pray he continues to make wise decisions that are not influenced by the politics of our day but by the Constitution and the law of the land.

  4. Bob Pomeroy

    Kathy, There is no evidence these detainees received any such training, or were participating in any action against the U.S. They were political refugees from China, and were swept up by mistake. All of your assumptions are based utterly on fear-mongering meant to deceive you. How do you feel about that? Are you so ashamed that you will persist in your error just to be “right”.

  5. Urbina was also the man who sent Ana Belen Montes to jail. She was the most treasonous spy against the United States to have been caught in the last 25 years….

    This form won’t let me post links so you’ll have to google “Ana Montes” and find out for yourselves.

  6. Muelrum

    Your “new hero” was just reversed, for exceeding his constitutional authority. Everyone, liberals and conservatives alike, have to follow the law.

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