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A change of venue might have brought Khalid Shaikh Mohammed to U.S.

It wasn’t exactly a surprise Monday when the Obama administration announced that five 9/11 conspirators -- including Khalid Shaikh Mohammed -- will be tried before military commissions at Guantanamo rather than in a civilian court in the United States. A trial in this country was strenuously  opposed in Congress, where some members probably would have preferred that the suspects receive no trials at all. 

Obama himself bears some blame. In January he signed a defense authorization bill barring Pentagon funds from being used to transfer Guantanamo detainees to the United States, a signal that he was losing his resolve.

I wonder if Obama would have salvaged the idea of criminal trials if Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. hadn’t proposed trying Mohammed et al. in New York City. Holder might have thought there was some cathartic symmetry in the location, but New Yorkers were aghast. If the administration had decided from the beginning that the trial should be held in a different, and secure, location, Mohammed might still be headed for the dock at Guantanamo. But he might also be preparing to face a civilian jury in Kansas.

That way Obama could have gotten what he wanted: a chance to show the world that even those accused of monstrous crimes are  provided with the full panoply of rights enjoyed by Americans.

ALSO:

Going nowhere on Gitmo

Guantanamo must go

Miranda rights and terror suspects

 -- Michael McGough

 

Comments () | Archives (4)

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Bob

Get real. If the US can't protect American's when a nut exercises his First Amendment right to burn the Koran, how do you expect American's to be protected when KSM's "constitutionally protected" criminal trial in NYC is on the front page and evening news for 6 straight months ?

The idea to try KSM in NYC was a joke.

Valerie Lucznikowska

I am live-long New Yorker and lost my nephew in the WTC on 9/11. I want federal trials for KSM and his cohorts in New York City where we, the families, can see them brought to justice in a fair and tested court of law. The 200+ year old federal courts have tried hundreds of terrorists since 9/11 and convicted over 90% of them. None have escaped from prison and nothing untoward accompanied their trials. Military tribunals have had 5 cases, with 3 plea bargained. Military commissions have been constantly revised since their inception under ten years ago, and who's to say that those convicted now by MCs won't be freed when the MCs are "modified" again by Congress or again ordered to conform by the Supreme Court?

las vegas entertainment deals

It is a great challenge for the Obama administration knowing that Americans are known to be as powerful citizens of the world. The administration must have to do its supreme power to maintain peace and order of their country. Because if America fails to do it, then other nations would have to think that America is not a powerful nation anymore, and thus does not deserve for adoration of all the decisions they wish to be implemented because they themselves are not able to keep their nation in peace.

las vegas entertainment deals

Maybe the best thing to stop this issue is not to give trials to the suspects.


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