Belle of Liberty

Letting Freedom Ring

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

The Show Trial Will Not Go On

Those of you holding tickets for the show trial of the century are just plain out of luck. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (KSM) and his cohorts will face justice in a military tribunal in Guantanamo, far from the public eye.

Attorney General Eric Holder made the announcement yesterday. He made the announcement but it’s widely believed that Obama made the call. Just recently, the Administration announced the Guantanamo would not be closed and that the terrorist detainees would be tried there.
Obama’s concession came with a price, however. For not turning the trial into a media circus, the detainees will be allowed their own counsel and they’ll be able to examine classified evidence and question witnesses. Intelligence operatives lives will be put in jeopardy and Al Qaeda and their ilk will have access to the CIA’s operations and methods.

Ordinarily, KSM could have been tried in a civilian court. Ramzi Yousef and Sheikh Abdel Rahman were tried successfully and they’re now lifetime prison mates at some super max prison out West. But KSM presents an unusual case. He was caught overseas, as Yousef (KSM’s nephew) was. But where Yousef was successful, not only in the World Trade Center bombing, but in blowing a hole in an airliner in the Philippines, how responsible was KSM? KSM was involved in the planning of 9/11, but no one is sure to what degree. How much of what he says is boasting and bravado, how much is coercion, how much is fabrication, how much is cowardice, and how much is ignorance on his part?

Still, at least we’ve got the little worm on the hook and he’s going to be tried where he can’t insult the memories of his victims by declaiming the righteousness of Islam (which does exhort its followers to terrorize unbelievers). His theatrics will be contained on a little tropical island in a closed courtroom where his propaganda will be extremely limited and his message of violence constrained.

The one thing AG Holder hasn’t announced is when these trials are to occur. No doubt as close to the 2012 election as possible, so Obama may benefit by them. He had a lot of nerve noting that it had taken 10 years for justice to be brought about. Good luck to the courtroom personnel, the prosecuting attorneys, the judge, and the panel. God help the witnesses.


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