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The Attorney-Client Relationship in Guantanamo Bay


First, the government restrictions found in the Protective Order and the new regulations severely limit the amount of contact the attorney can have with the client and the type of information that can be shared with the client. Second, the stay of the court proceedings since December 2004 has prevented any opportunity to present issues in the courts. Third, cultural barriers between attorneys and clients, including but not limited to the clients\u27 inability to understand the rule of law and the role of lawyers in the Common Law adversary model in general, and in the U.S. legal system in particular, further inhibit their decision-making capacity. This Essay considers the role of the defense attorney in Guantanamo Bay. Part I looks at models of cause lawyering, compares the tactics used by radical attorneys to those used by Guantanamo defense attorneys, and considers the rule of law as a “cause.” Part II looks to the restrictions put on the attorney-client relationship by the U.S. government and the client\u27s diminished decision-making capacity, and argues that paternalism is allowed in the relationship by the Model Rules of Professional Conduct. Part III considers the cultural gap that inhibits attorney client relationship in addition to the other barriers that were presented

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This paper was published in Fordham University School of Law.

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