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War crimes trial to decide fate of youngest detainee at Guantanamo

By Ed O'Keefe

By The Post's Peter Finn:

GUANTANAMO BAY, CUBA -- The first war crimes trial of the Obama administration, which began Thursday with brief opening arguments, will force a panel of seven military jurors, four male and three female officers, to confront two fundamental questions in the coming weeks of testimony:
Did a 15-year-old Canadian, during a bloody encounter with U.S. troops in southern Afghanistan, throw a grenade that killed a U.S. Special Forces medic? And if he is found guilty of murder, what punishment, if any, is appropriate for a teenage offender who was in the grip of a fanatical father?
Omar Khadr, now 23, and the youngest detainee at Guantanamo Bay, was found shot and almost mortally wounded in the rubble of an al-Qaeda compound in southern Afghanistan on July 27, 2002. Military prosecutors allege that following a four-hour firefight in which thousands of rounds were fired and the complex was bombarded by numerous fighter jets and attack helicopters, Khadr tossed a grenade that injured Sgt. Christopher Speer, 28. The father of two clung to life for eight days before dying; his widow, Tabitha, is expected to attend some of the proceedings.

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By Ed O'Keefe  | August 12, 2010; 3:41 PM ET
Categories:  Military  
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