Just Foreign Policy Iraqi Death Estimator    

Monday, March 29, 2010

Liz Cheney, It's Your Father's Fault

Last Monday, a federal judge ordered al Qaeda member Mohamedou Slahi released from Guantanamo Bay. In response, Liz Cheney's fear-mongering ultra-conservative group, Keep America Safe, tweeted "This is BAD." Liz is right. This is bad, and it's her father's fault.
Slahi was cited in the 9/11 Commission Report as a key recruiter for al Qaeda, suspected of recruiting Mohammad Atta and other members of the Hamburg cell involved in the 9/11 attacks. He is a dangerous man who needs to be in custody and should face justice for his role in attacking the United States. Unfortunately, the decisions made by the Bush administration have delayed punishing Slahi for more than seven years. While he should already have been sentenced to life in prison or death for his role in killing 3,000 Americans, Slahi sits in Guantanamo, where he tends to his tomato farm.
Conservatives will argue that the judge's order to release Slahi is somehow the fault of the Obama administration or 'liberal judges,' but three specific Bush administration decisions--pushed by Dick Cheney and now defended by Liz--are responsible for the order to release Slahi: the decision to allow torture of suspected terrorists, the creation of the Guantanamo Bay to detain them, and the failed attempt to use military commissions to prosecute them. Together, these decisions created a system incapable of punishing Slahi, and they now undermine our ability to detain a very dangerous man.
The Bush administration authorized torture. Because of that, we do not have enough admissible evidence to try Slahi in federal court or even in a military tribunal. In 2003 and 2004, military prosecutors wanted to seek the death penalty against Slahi. However, the Marine Corps prosecutor assigned to the case refused to bring charges against him, because, even in a military tribunal, evidence gained from torture is inadmissible.
Conservatives have already taken the opportunity to attack the Obama administration over this ruling, but their anger is directed in the wrong direction. Rather than attack the current administration, they should ask Liz Cheney to give her father a call and ask why his policies have made America less safe and denied justice for the victims of 9/11 and their families


Post a Comment

<< Home

free hit counter