Monday, November 23, 2009
Trying the Sheikh to Try Our Faith
By Alan Caruba
Like a lot of people, I have been pondering why the Obama administration would decide to remove Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the mastermind of 9/11, from facing a military tribunal as an enemy combatant to being granted the full rights of an American citizen; something he clearly is not.
It has been increasingly obvious that this administration is dedicated to destroying the nation’s economy by increasing its debt, imposing changes to our healthcare system—one sixth of the nation’s economy, taking ownership in General Motors and AIG, and doing nothing substantive about a rising unemployment rate.
It has done this at an astonishing rate of speed as if it realizes it only has a limited amount of time in which to bring down America.
The only element of the system that Obama has not yet significantly harmed is our system of justice. Americans implicitly believe in our system of justice which is fretted about with all manner of ways to protect the rights of the accused.
However, if Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is subjected to a trial, mere blocks from “ground zero” in the city that was attacked as the result of his planning, there are a myriad of ways the administration of justice—real justice—is impossible to achieve.
This is particularly evident in the statements by President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder, both of whom are lawyers and both of whom had to know that publicly stating that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed would be tried, found guilty and executed, immediately poisoned any choice of a fair trial.
“Innocent until proven guilty” is a concept even school children learn. The right to a fair and speedy trail is another. The Khalid Sheikh Mohammed trial has already turned this on its head.
Not only has the President declared him guilty, but has publicly condemned the “torture” that was used to gain a confession and other information we’re told was vital to thwarting still other attacks on the nation.
Thus, Obama has found a way to try our faith in our judicial system. The Attorney General has put the trial in motion and he has done so, without question, because the President has directed that action. This was not some casual decision Holder made while chatting over dinner with his wife!
Whatever ensues, it will raise serious questions whether Khalid Sheikh Mohammed can find “a jury of his peers”, receive adequate defense, and, if it is deemed that Constitutional rights—to which he was and is not eligible to enjoy—set him free, what then to do with him?
It will be the worst kind of “show trial” with the verdict pre-determined in a way that is as un-American as one can get. Even Mafia don John Gotti got off several times before finally being sent to prison.
The irony is that the people of the Middle East do not have any kind of comparable system of justice and, if the state arrests them, they are fortunate to even get a trial before being sent to jail or executed. There simply is no system of “justice” in the Middle East like ours and they have no way of judging ours from their experience and perspective.
In the meantime, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and his co-defendents will become Islamic martyrs.
Obama has made a mockery of our remarkable system of justice by putting Khalid Sheikh Mohammed on trial. He has put our faith in the system on trial. He has little use for a Constitution that limits his powers and now seeks to limit our faith in a system that affords every single American extraordinary rights.
But Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is not an American. If it was in his power, he would impose Islamic Sharia law on all of us. Failing that, he tried to kill as many of us as possible.
And, finally, remember that the President has the irrevocable power to pardon him!