he Obama administration's decision to try self-described 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four associates in a Manhattan federal court— rather than in military tribunals at Guantanamo Bay — is drawing sharp criticism from conservatives. Sarah Palin condemns it as "atrocious," while former NYC mayor Rudy Giuliani says the move gives the 9/11 perpetrators "unnecessary" legal advantages, and suggests "we’re not at war with terrorists any more." Does a civilian trial play into terrorists' hands, or does it strike a blow for American justice? (Watch our Sunday Talk Show Briefing on New York trying Khalid Sheikh Mohammed)
This is a huge victory for al Qaeda: Unlike a military proceeding, says John Yoo in The Wall Street Journal, which would allow the U.S. to withhold vital national security secrets, this plays right into al Qaeda's hands. In a civilian court, Khalid Shaikh Mohammed "will enjoy…the right to demand that the government produce…all of the information that it has on [him], and how it got it."
"The KSM trial will be an intelligence bonanza for al Qaida"
A civilian trial is a win for U.S. values: Trying the accused terrorists in civilian courts allows us to finally bring them to justice, in the "fairest way" possible, says the Los Angeles Times in an editorial, and helps offset the damage George Bush inflicted on America's image. Letting Khalid Shaikh Mohammed “have his day in court ma