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Speaking of John Walker Lindh, the imprisoned “American Taliban” whose father’s New York Times op-ed plea for his release (now that Osama bin Laden is dead) has prompted a new wave of debate over how suspected terrorists should be treated:
- Supreme Court: US Muslim cannot sue Ashcroft for 2003 detention ordeal (The Christian Science Monitor)
- High court rules out damage claim against Ashcroft (Associated Press)
From the AP’s story:
Born in Kansas, Al-Kidd is a former University of Idaho football star who now teaches English to college students in Saudi Arabia. He was headed to Saudi Arabia on a scholarship in 2003 when federal agents arrested him at Washington-Dulles International Airport.
The sworn statement the FBI submitted to justify the warrant had important errors and omissions. The $5,000 one-way, first-class seat that the agents said al-Kidd purchased was, in reality, a coach-class, round-trip ticket. The statement neglected to mention that al-Kidd had been cooperative or that he was a U.S. citizen with a wife and children who also were American.
After the arrest, he was held for 16 days, during which he was strip-searched repeatedly, left naked in a jail cell and shower for more than 90 minutes in view of men and women, routinely transported in handcuffs and leg irons, and kept with people who had been convicted of violent crimes.
Even after Tuesday’s ruling, al-Kidd still has claims pending against the FBI agents who obtained the material witness warrant used to arrest him. Al-Kidd has separately reached settlements with Virginia, Oklahoma and Idaho jail officials over his treatment. A federal judge in Oklahoma ruled the strip searches al-Kidd endured at the federal jail in Oklahoma City “were objectively unreasonable and violated the Fourth Amendment.”
Horrifying? Then again, I guess we could be Egypt:
- Egyptian general admits ‘virginity checks’ conducted on protesters (CNN)
- Ghosts in the Egyptian virginity tests (GetReligion)
What do you think? Share your thoughts in the Comments section below.