January 12, 2007

Talk on MCA on Wednesday, January 24, 7:30 p.m. in Doylestown

Coalition for Peace Action (Central Bucks) &
Upper Bucks for Democracy
January 24, 7:30 p.m., Celtic Cross Room
Doylestown Presbyterian Church
127 E. Court St., Doylestown, PA 18901

Coalition for Peace Action (Central Bucks) and Upper Bucks for Democracy will co-host Shawn Nolan, of the Federal Defender's Office, E.D. Pa., and recently returned from Guantánamo, where he has been working with detainee clients. He will speak about the Military Commissions Act (MCA) of 2006, the denial of habeas corpus, and the dangers they pose for U.S. Constitutional law and basic human rights. Mr. Nolan participated in the Guantánamo teach-in on October 5, 2006, at Temple University's Beasley School of Law.
Nolan challenges the administration’s claims about who is imprisoned at Guantánamo and whether U.S. treatment of detainees accords with U.S. and international law. “It’s outrageous. This is a classic study of government out of control. They go on TV and say, ‘We don’t torture,’ but they do!” He also disputes the government’s claim that “these are the worst of the worst.” He points out that only 5 percent of those being held were actually picked up on battlefields. Many were turned in by bounty hunters responding to U.S. leaflets dropped over Afghanistan promising “wealth and power beyond your dreams . . . millions of dollars.”

“They’ve been stripped of habeas corpus, and they can’t challenge their detention,” Nolan says. “Some of them have been there five years. There’s no due process. This is Star Chamber litigation. No one can see the light of day.”
Raised in the area, Nolan graduated from Lansdale Catholic High School in 1981. In addition to his work with Federal Community Defender, he is Adjunct Professor of Social Justice with the Great Lakes College Association.