Never mind the technicalities of
David Hicks’s legal limbo – there’s another reason to bring him back to Australia. The following story was told to me by a
federal type who has been officially briefed on Hicks and his former fellow Guantanamo inmate,
Mamdouh Habib.
The storyteller was no fan of Habib and would not care much if he remained in some sort of
detention, but Hicks was different.

Hicks obviously speaks some of the language of
the people with whom he’s lived, trained and fired weapons, but many of his
comrades had little or no English when they arrived at Guantanamo. So they begged Hicks for knowledge of suitably
dark and vicious curses they could hurl at their infidel American jailers, something
that would really annoy the Servants of Satan?

The guards were subsequently met with an
enraged chorus from the “worst of the worst”: “Gidday mate howareyergoin’, gidday mate howareyergoin’,
gidday mate howareyergoin’…“

Hicks is a larrikin and a fool, perhaps a
dangerous fool, certainly a danger to himself. But he hasn’t broken any laws
and should be brought home.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey