Decision to Try Bin Laden In-Law in NYC Draws Fire
By Harold Hutchison
Two Republican Senators have strongly criticized the decision of the Obama Administration to try Sulaiman Abu Ghayth in New York City. The criticism was joined by the prosecutor of the “blind sheikh” Omar Abdel-Rahman, Andrew C. McCarthy, who accused the Obama Administration of turning “the clock back to the pre-9/11 days, when al-Qaeda was a law-enforcement problem, not a national-security challenge.”
Senators Lindsey Graham and Kelly Ayotte said in a written joint statement, “The Obama administration’s lack of a war-time detention policy for foreign members of al Qaeda, as well as its refusal to detain and interrogate these individuals at Guantanamo, makes our nation less safe. We are at war with Al Qaeda and its affiliated groups, and America’s detention policy must reflect that reality."
McCarthy, who learned after the prosecution of Rahman that materials handed over to the defense in accordance with rules of discovery had fallen into al-Qaeda’s hands, added in a post at NationalReview.com’s “Corner” blog, added, “This is a bold presidential decision to undermine military commissions and to proclaim that the civilian courts are the government’s venue of choice for all terrorism cases — even those against wartime enemy combatants.”
McCarthy noted that the decision to try Abu Ghayth in civilian court has probably cost the intelligence community the chance to obtain valuable intelligence. In accordance with civilian due process, intelligence files would also likely be handed over as well, exposing American weaknesses.
“We’ve seen how this ends,” McCarthy concluded.