As the government began calling witnesses against Hamdan, two U.S. soldiers testified about the tense and chaotic backdrop to his capture and early interrogation near Kandahar, Afghanistan, including three violent incidents involving cars stopped at a vehicle checkpoint in the village of Takhteh Pol. Prosecutors have alleged that two SA-7 surface-to-air missiles were found there in Hamdan's car.
Maj. Henry Smith, who was in command of 15 U.S. soldiers and at least 600 Afghans, told the court that he had seen Hamdan at the checkpoint, where he was arrested Nov. 24, 2001. Smith testified that a man behind the wheel of a Toyota was stopped at the roadblock by local Afghans, who chased down the fleeing driver and dragged him to a local jail. Smith said in direct testimony that the man was Hamdan. But on cross-examination, Smith admitted that he didn't know what car the fleeing man had exited.
A U.S. Special Forces soldier identified only as Sgt. Maj. A conceded that he hadn't witnessed the checkpoint encounter but said that the local Afghans were thoroughly trustworthy.
Lt. Cmdr. Brian Mizer, Hamdan's military defense lawyer, showed the senior enlisted man in Delta Force a classified military cable in which Afghanistan-based forces reported to higher-ups that two missiles had been found in a vehicle seized at the same checkpoint that day but from Arab suspects who had fought back and been killed.
In other words, the US Government does not have a real case against this man.