In the Company of Cowards: Bush, Howard and injustice at Guantanamo
Viking, $29.95 pb, 304 pp, 9780670077854
The unusual case of David Hicks is one of the most spectacular and politically supercharged miscarriages of justice in Australian history. Like the infamous Boer War case of Breaker Morant, Hicks was politically scapegoated and grossly denied a fair trial. Unlike Morant – a war criminal who murdered prisoners of war – even Hicks’s accuser, the United States, never claimed that Hicks had hurt anybody or plotted to harm civilians. No wonder his military lawyer, Michael Mori, felt ‘ripped off’ getting Hicks, after being told he would be defending the ‘worst of the worst’. Whereas the young Australian government demanded answers from Britain about Morant’s trial, the Howard government repeatedly urged US military commissions to prosecute Hicks.