Here Come The 9/11 Death Penalties
In addition to Khalid Sheik Mohammed, those to be charged, according to the NYT, are:
The official identified the others to be charged as Mohammed al-Qahtani, the man officials have labeled the 20th hijacker; Ramzi bin al-Shibh, said to have been the main intermediary between the hijackers and leaders of Al Qaeda; Ali Abd al-Aziz Ali, known as Ammar al-Baluchi, a nephew of Mr. Mohammed, who has been identified as Mr. Mohammed’s lieutenant for the 2001 operation; Mr. al-Baluchi’s assistant, Mustafa Ahmed al-Hawsawi; and Walid bin Attash, a detainee known as Khallad, who investigators say selected and trained some of the hijackers.Many Leftists will feel compelled to defend the six. For the hardcore, they are revolutionaries who attacked America, Bush and Wall Street. If the rhetoric is going to reach the road, they have no choice but to support. I hope this crowed is loud and highly visible.
More run-of-the-mill Lefties, marinated in anti-military beliefs, will defend the six because they were held in Guantanamo, away from due process, and will claim that evidence from their interrogation sessions must be rejected as coerced. While not as offensive as the first set, this group's protests will alienate most level-headed Americans who know intuitively that the six would have been dead long ago, were it not for the fact that it was America that captured them.
The anti-death sentence folks will be out in force, of course, as evidenced by the NYT, which didn't even wait for an editorial to editorialize:
Relatives of the Sept. 11 victims have expressed differing views of potential death sentences, with some arguing that it would accomplish little other than martyring men for whom martyrdom may be viewed as a reward.Those relatives, if they exist at all, were not named in the article, which then went on to add:
Some countries have been critical of the United States’ use of the death penalty in civilian cases, and a request for execution in the military commission system would import much of that criticism to the already heated debates about the legitimacy of Guantánamo and the Bush administration’s legal approach there, some lawyers said.The countries supposedly holding the view went unnamed as well. The lawyers were not identified.
My view: The six are lucky to be alive. How nice it would be to be able to go back in time a bit and mount them in stocks on the sidewalks alongside the World Trade Center site, but we are no longer that country, thank God. We will see that evidence is presented against them, that their lawyers will be heard.
A military tribunal will decide their earth-bound fate. If indeed they are guilty, a higher power will consider their eternal fate.