Khalid Sheikh Mohammed Show Trial
In my initial posting on the Khalid Sheikh Mohammed Trial, I asserted that “there’s an incredibly good chance that Mohammed and his comrades will go free. The fact that KSM was repeatedly waterboarded would seem to taint any subsequent evidence, including his own confession.”
This was based on the presumption that the whole point of trying KSM in a civilian court was to demonstrate that we’ve changed our evil ways and would allow accused terrorists to avail themselves of the finest justice system in the world.
Not so much, it seems. Jim Geraghty:
Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa: “I don’t think you can say that failure to convict is not an option, when we have juries in this country.”
Attorney General Eric Holder: I have thought about that possibility. Congress has passed legislation that would not allow the release of these individuals in this country. If there is not a successful conclusion to this trial, that would not mean that this person would be released into this country…
Grassley: My understanding is that if for some reason he’s not convicted, or a judge lets him off on a technicality, he’ll be an enemy combatant, so you’re right back where you started.
I can’t find the full transcript online elsewhere, so don’t have Holder’s retort. But if the defendants have zero chance of being released, this is a show trial and a sham. That’s frankly much worse than the status quo, much less a military tribunal.