Sunday, November 21, 2010

Will Khalid Sheikh Mohammed be Tried?

The Washington Post is reporting that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed may never stand trial.  The mastermind of the 911 attacks, the 1993 World Trade Center attack, the Kenyan embassy attack, the failed shoe bomb of Richard Reid, and the man who said he used his own “blessed right hand” to decapitate reporter Daniel Pearl, is in indefinite detention while government officials argue over where he should be tried.
Attorney General Eric Holder and the Obama administration want to try him in New York City over the objections of just about everyone involved, from the people of New York to the politicians.  For some reason the administration believes this terrorist/enemy combatant should be moved to New York and tried in a civilian court.  Sound reasoning for this idea escapes me and most other people.  Khalid Sheikh Mohammed has already admitted guilt during a hearing in Guantanamo Bay.  A trial shouldn’t really be necessary but if Mr. Holder, in his infinite wisdom, refuses to let him plead guilty then he should be tried where he is.  (Remember, this is the same Attorney General and President who refused to try two members of the New Black Panther Party for voter intimidation even with videotaped evidence.)
Earlier this week another terrorist, tried in the city of new York on 286 charges, including 276 counts of murder, was found not guilty of all but one count, that being conspiracy to damage or destroy American property.  Ahmed Khalfan Guailani blew up the embassies in Kenya and Tanzania killing 224 people.  He was caught and held in Guantamo Bay until he finally went to trial on all 286 total counts.  While he was being held, another terrorist was caught and, during enhanced interrogation, admitted selling the explosives to Mr. Ghailani.  The judge in the case, a liberal appointee, refused to allow the testimony by the witness because it was obtained under duress.  He was found not guilty of all murder charges even though he killed all of those people with his bomb.
The witness had been “waterboarded”, a technique whereby the victim is held down and water is poured over their face to give them the feeling of drowning.  It can cause severe panic and is normally very effective at getting suspects to talk.  The waterboarding technique, used extensively by the CIA after 9/11 (until President Obama ended its use) was directly responsible for preventing several other planned attacks by terrorists, even in the United States.  However, the current President decided it is a form of torture and will no longer allow it to be used.  And liberal judges, following the President’s example, are disallowing testimony from anyone who was subjected to waterboarding which may allow several terrorists, including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, to go free.   It’s funny – these people have no qualms about beating people, stoning people, blowing them up, cutting off their heads and dragging them through the streets to be hung by the neck, but if we use a little water to coerce some information from them, we’re the bad guys (in the eyes of our administration.)
The President of the United States has issued orders to the military that they are to read Miranda rights to any captured prisoners of war.  The thought of this is so unbelievable I still can’t comprehend it but it is a standing order.  He has also issued an order that when our soldiers go on patrol they are not authorized to charge their weapons (put a bullet in the chamber so the weapon is ready to fire) but must wait until the enemy fires at them before they can make their weapons ready to fire back.  This was done under the guise of protecting the innocent public but it is just another asinine move by the government.  Any President who sends troops into harm’s way but tells them they cannot prepare to meet the enemy until they have already met the enemy is completely clueless.  And I’m extremely disappointed the commanding Generals didn’t heartily object and even refuse to send troops into battle under these restrictions.
Whatever happens to Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in the American justice system will be attributed to the current administration as much as to anyone since they are the ones who decided not to try him at Guantanomo Bay.  If he goes to trial in the States and by chance is acquitted, the Obama administration is finished.  I think they know that at this point, which is why they haven’t moved forward with their plans to try him in New York.  Although they won’t admit defeat in this case, I’m fairly sure the verdict and the public reaction got their attention.

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