Friday, November 13, 2009

New York is not afraid of terrorists.

Here is part of Congressman Jerry Nadler's statement on the Justice Department's decision finally to try some of the alleged 9/11 plotters in New York courts:
New York is not afraid of terrorists, we want to confront them, we want to bring them to justice, and we want to hold them accountable for their despicable actions.
For too long we have treated the Guantanamo detainees as though they are so dangerous they cannot be allowed on the US mainland.  As may be recalled, this was originally done only because the Bush Justice Department mistakenly believed that they would have fewer rights if they were not imprisoned on US soil.  Meanwhile many of the Guantanamo prisoners were quietly released by the Bush adminstration because they were found to pose no substantial threat.  And we may have difficulty trying many who remain because they were tortured by the prior administration.  But the lengthy imprisonment of these detainees has given rise to a common view that the remaining detainees as so dangerous that they must be kept out of the United States forever. 

We are already starting to hear the voices of fear and distrust, questioning the Obama administration's decision to treat these characters as ordinary criminals.  They would rather have the American people believe that these detainees are super-powerful evil masterminds capable of causing mass destruction as soon as they set foot on US soil.  These critics seem to need an all-powerful enemy to justify a continued war-like and vigilant state.  They take offense at the suggestion that suicide bombers are weak, pathetic cowards.  The best way to counter this kind of fear-mongering is for people to understand that even if Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and his associates are found to have plotted the worst villainy ever committed against America, they are still merely ordinary human beings who can be held in ordinary prisons and tried in ordinary courts.  It is time to diminish them, not to increase their stature.  They should be taken where they belong, to the federal courts of  New York City.

4 comments:

  1. I disagree with you. 9/11 was not the worst villainy committed to America. Far worse things have happened. We are not alone in our pain in the world, although the way 9/11 was portrayed we walked away feeling like we were individual in our pain. The rest of the world has 9/11's happening every day, yet no one does anything. Instead of feeling victimized and retaliating with wars, America needs to realize she has to heal the world if she wants to be healed. We have to prevent these worldwide 9/11, more so because they are results of our foreign policy, to not only improve the lives of people worldwide, but also protect and heal ourselves. I think Americans don't realize just how much our actions impact and often hurt the rest of the world. If we improved their lives, they would not want to hurt us. Many experts agreed that going into Iraq and Afghanistan would only lead to more terrorism. Our country is in love with war, we need to change that.

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  2. I did not say that 9/11 was the worst villainy that has ever happened to America. I said that EVEN IF these guys were found to have plotted the worst villainy against America, it would be good for us to realize that they are just puny humans, not super-villains. One could argue that Pearl Harbor was worse. One could even argue that when the British burned down our capital in the War of 1812, that was worse. I don't want to get into a debate about which was the worst event in our history. I just wanted to make the point that it would be good to take the perpetrators of 9/11 down to size, regardless of how heinous anyone thinks their crime was. (and most people would agree that their crime ranks up pretty high in heinousness)

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  3. They should be. I'm glad I don't live there.

    Sounds like you're quoting Bush... "Bring them on!"

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  4. Joe, how does bringing them to New York city "diminish" them? It will do nothing but increase their stature.

    This is a show trial pure and simple. When the President comes out and says that regardless of the outcome of the trial, KSM will not walk, he makes a mockery of the very values and principles he is pretending to uphold.

    This is a payoff to his base - nothing more.

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