Last year, two separate judges ordered the Pentagon to free Fouad Rabia, a Kuwaiti, and Mohammed Jawad, an Afghan, after reviewing the military's evidence against the men through habeas corpus petitions at the U.S. District Court in Washington D.C., an authority granted to the courts by the U.S. Supreme Court.
In the case of Rabia, a Kuwait Airways engineer, Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly ordered him freed from eight years detention ``forthwith'' because American interrogators had wrung a false confession out of him years ago.
And in Jawad, Judge Ellen Segal Huvelle found that, since the evidence against him was the fruit of torture by Afghan interrogators in his homeland, the Defense Department should send him home to his mother. Jawad had been taken to Guantánamo as a teen.
Obaidullah's lawyers had sought to have his case reviewed by a federal court too. But Judge Richard Leon ruled that the Afghan was not entitled to a civilian review as long the military planned a prosecution.
Holder's decision to let the Pentagon prosecute him makes Obaidullah the seventh Guantánamo detainee in the queue for trial by a military commission system that Congress revamped at President Obama's request.
The other six are:
Alleged Bin Laden bodyguard Ibrahim al Qosi, a Sudanese man who has a show-case hearing scheduled for mid-February.
Canadian Omar Khadr, captured at age 15, on track for a summer trial on charges he threw a grenade that killed a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan in July 2002.
Saudi Arabian Ahmed Darbi, accused of plotting a never realized attack on a ship in the Strait of Hormuz.
Noor Mohammed of Sudan, accused of running an al Qaeda training camp.
Mohammed Kamin of Afghanistan, who had been accused of also spying on U.S. forces until the Pentagon prosecutor withdrew the charges, with plans to refile them.
Also, Holder approved the likely death penalty trial by military commission of former CIA captive Abd al Rahim al Nashiri, a Yemeni accused of plotting the October 2000 al Qaeda suicide bombing of the USS Cole that killed 17 American sailors. The Pentagon prosecutor has yet to swear out his charges.