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Legal advisor staying after Guantanamo trial disqualification

[JURIST] US Air Force Reserve Brig. Gen. Thomas Hartmann [official profile], a top Pentagon legal advisor on the Guantanamo military commission trials, said Wednesday that he will not resign [AP report] despite questions concerning his objectivity. Hartmann serves as legal advisor to Susan J. Crawford, the Convening Authority [backgrounder] for the military commissions, but last week was disqualified from participating [JURIST report] in the trial of detainee Salim Ahmed Hamdan [DOD materials; JURIST news archive] amidst concerns he was too closely associated with the prosecution.

Earlier this year former Guantanamo prosecutor Air Force Col. Morris D. Davis [official profile, PDF] said Hartmann had questioned the need for open trials [JURIST report] at Guantanamo and was upset with the slow pace of the proceedings begun by Davis. Last month, Davis testified at Hamdan's pre-trial hearing that Hartmann had pressured him to move forward with military commissions quickly out of political considerations [JURIST report].

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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