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Tag: Guantanamo

Pentagon Refiles Charges Against 9/11 Suspects: Sets Stage for Military Trial

Khalid Sheik Mohammad

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration appears to be paving the way to prosecute 9/11 suspected terrorist Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four others in a military tribunal.

CNN reported that the Defense Department on  Tuesday  refiled charges against the men so they can be prosecuted in a military court in the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, naval base.

The Justice Department had initially announced plans to prosecute the men in U.S. District Court in New York. But the powerful opposition forced the administration to shift gears.

Besides Mohammed, the other suspects included: Walid bin Attash, Ramzi bin al-Shibh, Ali Abdul Aziz Ali and Mustafa Ahmed al-Hawsawi. All five are at Guantanamo.

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Atty. Gen. Holder Asks Senate Leaders to Reject Ban on Gitmo Moves

doj photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Attorney Gen. Eric Holder Jr. fired off a letter Thursday to Senate leaders urging them not to pass legislation blocking the administration from moving Guantanamo terrorist suspects to U.S. soil.

“This provision goes well beyond existing law and would unwisely restrict the ability of the Executive branch to prosecute alleged terrorists in Federal courts or military commissions in the United States as well as its ability to incarcerate those convicted in such tribunals,” Holder wrote to Senators Harry Reid and Mitch McConnell.

The letter came at the heels of House vote approving legislation to bar transfers.

Passage would put the kabosh on the administration’s hopes of trying some terrorist suspects in U.S. federal court.

“It would therefore be unwise, and would set a dangerous precedent with serious implications for the impartial administration of justice, for Congress to restrict the discretion of the Executive branch to prosecute terrorists in these venues,” Holder wrote. “The exercise of prosecutorial discretion has always been and must remain an Executive branch function. ”

To read the full letter click here.

Sen. Lindsey Graham Wants to Cut Deal on Military Tribunal for 9/11 Trial

Sen. Lindsey Graham critical of move

Sen. Lindsey Graham

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The horse trading Washington is so famous for is in full swing.

Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) said on CBS’s “Face the Nation” on Sunday that if the White House agrees to try self-described 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in a military tribunal he would press fellow Republicans to vote to shut down Guantanamo Bay.

The the issue has been a matter of intense discussion at the White House and at the Justice Department, but so far no decision has been made.

Graham also said on the CBS show a new legal system needs to be created to try dangerous detainees.

“We need a legal system that gives due process to the detainee but also understands they didn’t rob a liquor store,” he said.

See ticklethewire.com columns by Ross Parker and Steven Levin.

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Sen. Chuck Grassley Critical of Housing Guantanamo Inmates in Ill.

Sen. Grassley/official photo

Sen. Grassley/official photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

WASHINGTON — As expected, not everyone is happy with the Obama Administration’s decision to house Guantanamo Bay prisoners at a correctional facility in Thomson, Ill., about a two hours drive from Chicago.

The White House announced on Tuesday that it planned to purchase the facility and also hold military trials there.

In response, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) released a critical statement:

“I don’t agree with bringing terrorists anywhere in the United States, let alone a stone’s throw from Iowa. There are a number of serious concerns with moving these terrorists to United States soil, including the legal, immigration and constitutional rights they will be afforded, along with a host of national security concerns and risks that would obviously come with moving people to the heartland who wish to kill Americans.

“On top of all that, experts say many of the jobs at the prison will need to be filled by specialized personnel who would be moved into the area instead of the jobs going to local residents.”

“I’m all for filling this facility with federal prisoners, but that can be done without bringing 75-100 terrorists, who have worldwide terrorist connections, to it.”

Female FBI Agent in Guantanamo Says She Was Ostracized For Not Partaking in “Spring Break” Activities

It’s understandable in such an isolated environment people do things to keep their spirits up. But it sounds like this female FBI agent feels things went too far.

spring-break

By TIM HULL
Courthouse News Service
BOSTON – The first full-time female FBI agent to be stationed at Guantanamo says she was made to bunk with vermin that gave her a tropical disease and was ostracized because she refused to join in a “spring break” atmosphere in which agents were encouraged to drink, date, and frolic when not interrogating alleged terrorists.

She says FBI agents attended parties dressed in “mocking imitation of Arab or Afghan attire” and in orange detainee jumpsuits. And she says she has photos to prove it.

Theresa A. Foley, 43, requested a transfer to Camp Delta at Guantanamo Bay in 2003, and says that from the moment she arrived she found a “generally sexist, discriminatory and ‘boys club’ atmosphere” at the island prison.

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