An Iraqi court in November ordered that he be released for lack of evidence. But the U.S. military continues to hold him, saying it has intelligence that he is "a high security threat," said Maj. Neal Fisher, spokesman for detainee affairs.
The Obama administration harshly criticized Iran for its imprisonment of Roxana Saberi, the U.S.-Iranian journalist who was convicted of espionage and sentenced to eight years in prison before being freed two weeks ago.
"Washington also has called upon North Korea to expedite the trial of two U.S. journalists being held on spying charges.Yet the U.S. has routinely used the arbitrary powers it assumed after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorism attacks to hold journalists without charge in Iraq, as well as Afghanistan and Pakistan, the Committee to Protect Journalists said. None of the detained journalists has been convicted of any charge, undermining the United States' reputation when it comes to criticizing other countries on issues of press freedom, committee executive director Joel Simon said. "The U.S. has a record of holding journalists for long periods of time without due process and without explanation," he said. "Its standing would be improved if it addressed this issue."Reuters has expressed disappointment over Jassam's detention and has said there is no evidence against him. "
Jassam's brother, Walid, visited him recently in Camp Bucca, the desolate, tented U.S. prison camp in the desert in southern Iraq, and found him close to the breaking point."He used to be handsome, but now he's pale and he's tired," said Walid, who says his brother had no ties to insurgents. "Every now and then while we were talking, he would start crying. He was begging me: 'Please do something to get me out of here. I don't know what is the charge against me.' "I told him we already tried everything."
Once again, the U.S. leadership is providing plenty of rebuttal rhetoric for it's enemies. Did someone say hypocrites?