The Abandonment of Responsibility

Administration halts prosecution of alleged USS Cole bomber

The Obama administration has shelved the planned prosecution of Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, the alleged coordinator of the Oct. 2000 suicide attack on the USS Cole in Yemen, according to a court filing.

The decision at least temporarily scuttles what was supposed to be the signature trial of a major al-Qaeda figure under a reformed system of military commissions. And it comes practically on the eve of the 10th anniversary of the attack, which killed 17 sailors and wounded dozens when a boat packed with explosives ripped a hole in the side of the warship in the port of Aden.

In a filing this week in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, the Justice Department said that “no charges are either pending or contemplated with respect to al-Nashiri in the near future.”

The statement, tucked into a motion to dismiss a petition by Nashiri’s attorneys, suggests that the prospect of further military trials for detainees held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, has all but ground to a halt, much as the administration’s plan to try the accused plotters of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in federal court has stalled.

Let’s say that again: “no charges are either pending or contemplated with respect to al-Nashiri in the near future.”

Well, couple this with the Administration’s essential abandonment of prosecuting Khalid Sheik Muhammad, and we must question the intent and seriousness of this Administration to address terrorism issues. To be frank, I’m not impressed, especially since they seem to have time to sue Arizona…

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5 thoughts on “The Abandonment of Responsibility

  1. It has been quiet on the KSM front, hasn’t it?

    You must admit however that the article you quote presents a complicated picture full of opposing views and opinions. In fact, the Defense Department denies that the prosecution is over. You’ll also note that some were squeamish about a military tribunal because hearsay evidence is allowed and the key evidence against Nashiri was hearsay. As for statements from the man himself … obtained via “enhanced interrogation techniques”. So the whole thing is a total mess.

    I fully understand your desire for justice so on those grounds I give your piece a thumbs up.

    By the way, I could not resolve the URL you gave for the Washington Post article. I ended up finding it by signing in with my Facebook account. Perhaps this link will work for your other readers (or they may be forced to sign in as I was):

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/26/AR2010082606353.html

  2. Thanks R, I appreciate the link fix.

    I’m about priorities, and this President isn’t making terrorism a priority.

  3. Only problem G, is that Obama’s record at capturing terrorist suspects (especially abroad) has been quite good. I get the feeling you are confusing the President’s rhetoric with what is actually going down on the ground.

    In fact, the deeper we get into this administration, the more I think Obama communication strategy = massive fail.

  4. Would you prefer he abandon Bush policies that you supported? Either he’s incompetent or a copycat. You don’t give the guy much room for a successful evaluation do you?

    By the way, I’m among those who readily acknowledge that the pull-out from Iraq was promised by Bush, not Obama. We will have to see how Obama handles this in tonight’s Oval Office address.

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