|From||United States of America|
George Brent Mickum IV is an American lawyer and currently the General Counsel of ERP Compliant Fuels, LLC. Mickum represented three British residents, Bisher Al Rawi, Jamil El Banna, and Martin Mubanga in El Banna v. Bush. The three were captured in Africa, held first in CIA custody, then transported to the Guantanamo Bay detention camps, in Cuba.
Before entering private practice, Mickum worked as a trial attorney for the Federal Trade Commission. He also worked as a special assistant U.S. Attorney for the Department of Justice and as the senior investigative counsel for the Senate Special Committee on Investigations.
When the United States Supreme Court forced the Department of Defense to provide an opportunity for captives to learn why they were being held, they designed administrative procedures called “Combatant Status Review Tribunals”. The Guardian quoted Mickum’s advice to his clients that they decline to participate:
On January 12, 2005, The Guardian published an article by Mickum, where he described one of his clients, Bisher Al Rawi, being punished for trying to forward the names of other Guantanamo captives who wanted habeas corpus petitions submitted on their behalf. The lawyers who were prepared to submit habeas corpus petitions could only do so when they were approached by a detainee’s “next friend”.
In February 2008 Mickum was one of the first two lawyers to see Abu Zubaydah, one of the three captives the CIA acknowledges waterboarding, when he was in one of their black sites.” All the attorneyd who are allowed to meet with the Guantanamo captives had to agree not to disclose “secret” information they learn from their clients. However the CIA argued this agreement wasn’t sufficient for those attorneys who wanted to meet with their former clients, because the clients could reveal information that was “top secret”. Mickum said: “The hypocrisy that we cannot discuss Zubaydah’s treatment, but the government can admit to waterboarding him and claim that it is legal is rather astounding.”
On March 30, 2009 The Guardian published an article by Mickum, entitled “The truth about Abu Zubaydah: The Bush administration’s false claim that my client was a top al-Qaida official has led to his imprisonment and torture.” Mickum’s text was submitted to the CIA, who required multiple redactions. Mickum wrote:
“These facts really are no longer contested: Zayn was not, and never had been, a member of either the Taliban or al-Qaida. The CIA determined this after torturing him extensively and […]. Zayn was never a member or a supporter of any armed forces that were allied against the United States. He had no weapon when he was taken into illegal custody. He never took up arms against the United States nor against its coalition allies. He was not picked up on a battlefield in Afghanistan at the time of his detention, but was taken into custody in Pakistan, where he was wrongfully attacked, shot, and nearly killed.”