One can make the argument that al Qaeda is the aggressors, he told The Miami Herald from Gainesville, but the Seminoles were the innocent targets.
It was Jackson invading the territory of a sovereign country, Spain, and hes executing within that territory citizens of another sovereign country, Britain.
By Monday, the chief Pentagon War Crimes prosecutor, Navy Capt. John F. Murphy, along with Gilligan and White, notified the appeals court that the government did not object to a National Congress of American Indians filing.
Moreover, the prosecutors acknowledged that the Seminole portion of the brief could have benefited from greater precision.
The government in no way questions or impugns the valor, bravery and honorable military service of Native Americans, past and present, the prosecutors wrote, adding that the Military Commissions prosecution team does not, in fact, equate the conduct of the Seminoles in 1817-1818 with that of al Qaeda and its affiliated terrorist group.
Rather, they wrote, the government cites General Jacksons campaign and the tribunals he convened not as an example of moral right but as legal precedent: the morality or propriety of General Jacksons military operation in Florida is irrelevant.
Defense lawyers, however, urged the court to ignore the Seminole argument.
In Florida, the Seminoles first learned of the brouhaha from a Miami Herald reporter.
General Counsel Jim Shore declared the tribes 3,500 members deeply offended by the government position.
To equate the historic struggle of our ancestors in resisting General Andrew Jacksons unlawful invasion of our homeland to al Qaeda terrorism is a vicious distortion of well-documented history, he said Wednesday.
Shore said he would soon write Defense Secretary Roberts Gates demanding that the government withdraw the offending portion of the brief.
The Governments strained comparison of Native Americans to al Qaeda is disrespectful to our Tribe, all American Indians and our American Indian military veterans, as well as those in active military service, he said.