"The Oath" Documentary Film Screening

April 3, 2011Duke Law News

Sunday, April 3, 2011
Room 3041
Duke Law School

3:00–3:30 PM
Introductory remarks with filmmaker Laura Poitras and attorney Charlie Swift

3:30–5:00 PM
The Oath
Film Screening

5:00–5:30 PM
Reception and Signing Event

The Program in Public Law and Duke Law chapter of the American Constitution Society (ACS) are honored to host Academy Award-nominated documentary filmmaker Laura Poitras for a film screening of her most recent documentary, The Oath, which has won awards at both the Sundance Film Festival and the Berlin International Film Festival. The Oath tells the story of Abu Jandal, Osama bin Laden's former bodyguard, and his brother-in-law, Salim Hamdan, Osama bin Laden's former driver and the Guantanamo detainee who lent his name to the landmark Supreme Court case, Hamdan v. Rumsfeld, which found the private military tribunal system for Guantanamo detainees to be unlawful.

Laura Poitras
Director / Producer / Cinematographer

Charles (Charlie) Swift
Attorney / Partner
Swift & McDonald, P.S.
Seattle, WA

Laura Poitras was nominated for an Academy Award, an Independent Spirit Award, and an Emmy Award for MY COUNTRY, MY COUNTRY (2006), a documentary about the U.S. occupation of Iraq. She received a Peabody Award and was nominated for an Emmy and an Independent Spirit Award for FLAG WARS (2003; made with Linda Goode Bryant), a documentary about gentrification that premiered at the SXSW Film Festival and won the award for Best Documentary. Following MY COUNTRY, MY COUNTRY, THE OATH is Poitras’s second documentary in a trilogy titled THE NEW AMERICAN CENTURY about America post 9/11. The final film will focus on the 9/11 trials. Poitras is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, and a Media Arts Fellowship from the Rockefeller Foundation/Tribeca Film Institute.

Charles (Charlie) Swift retired from the U.S. Navy in 2006, where for the last 13 years he worked in the Judge Advocate General’s Corps (JAG), in addition to his service as a surface warfare officer. While in the JAG Corps, he worked principally in the area of criminal defense, earning a reputation as a premier trial attorney. Most noteworthy is his quest for justice at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, concluding with the Supreme Court’s landmark decision in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld. Following his military career, Charles was a visiting professor and head of the Humanitarian Law Clinic at Emory University School of Law in Atlanta, Georgia, before leaving to enter private practice in Seattle. He has been a regular contributor on the topics of military law and terrorism for national news programs including MSNBC, CNBC, CNN, NPR, and Fox News.