Yesterday’s New York Daily News posted an article about the circus that the trial of the 9/11 conspirators at Guantanamo has become. As you remember, one of the female defense lawyers had demanded that all female lawyers in the court wear Muslim dress. Other antics of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and his fellow defendants are detailed in a May 5th article in the U.K. Daily Mail. These antics include such things are refusing to answer the judge’s questions, delaying the trial by kneeling in prayer, removing their headphones (for translation) and reading magazines. Generally, the defendants have done anything they could to turn the proceedings into a circus. The only reason their antics are not on the front page of every newspaper is that the trial is taking place in Cuba in a military tribunal–thus illustrating the wisdom of a military trial in Cuba rather than a civlian trial in New York City.
The Daily News reports the latest antic:
As shown by their past offensive behavior, including at their all-day, long-into-the-night arraignment, the intent is to make as much of a joke of the proceedings as possible.
Their enablers now include Navy Cmdr. Walter Ruiz and four fellow defense lawyers who have demanded that President Obama, former President George W. Bush and other top officials be compelled to testify.
The petition has about as much chance of success as a snowball in the Cuban heat. It is designed to undermine the credibility of the proceedings in those precincts where KSM has fans. The insinuation is that the tribunal judge is prejudiced against the defendants by virtue of harsh presidential statements made about them in the past.
In the past America has upheld some measure of decorum at military tribunals. I am hoping we will not be manipulated into abandoning that decorum during this trial (although it seems that we already have). We already have confessions from the men on trial, the questions should be, “Do we execute them and let them become martyrs or do we let them live out their lives enjoying a lifestyle they would never achieve in their home countries–electricity, running water, beautiful weather, etc.?” It’s an interesting dilemma.