A hat tip to Kevin Drum, today and yesterday, for drawing attention in three posts, to two similar stories on the repercussions of 9/11, and the Bushies zeal to rein in, prosecute and if need be railroad whomever fits the description of a terrorist, whether plausible or not.
The first is a 'Los Angeles Times' story that "the U.S. is concerned that evidence obtained from CIA interrogations will be inadmissible at war-crimes tribunals". The story begins,
The FBI is quietly reconstructing the cases against Khalid Shaikh Mohammed and 14 other accused Al Qaeda leaders being held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, spurred in part by U.S. concerns that years of CIA interrogation have yielded evidence that is inadmissible or too controversial to present at their upcoming war crimes tribunals, government officials familiar with the probes said.
The process is an embarrassment for the Bush administration, which for years held the men incommunicado overseas and allowed the CIA to use coercive means to extract information from them that would not be admissible in a U.S. court of law -- and might not be allowed in their military commissions, some former officials and legal experts said. Even if the information from the CIA interrogations is allowed, they said, it would probably risk focusing the trials on the actions of the agency and not the accused.
(In short it's about the torture the President says we don't use). "Those guys were using techniques that we didn't even want to be in the room for," one senior federal law enforcement official said. "The CIA determined they were going to torture people, and we made the decision not to be involved."
"I think there's no surprise that they have to call in the FBI to clean up the mess left by the CIA secret detention program," said Jumana Musa, advocacy director for Amnesty International. "They would be smart to use evidence that did not come out of years of secret detentions, interrogations and torture."
The second related story pointed out by Drum though less grim, is so embarrassing to the authorities that much of it is redacted, under the old hoary chestnut of national security, (read embarrassment to the Bush administration). Fortunately, much of the court case, courtesy of this blogger was released before the classifed court order; it isn't about torture (per se), but an emininently false confession under coercion, this time supervised by the FBI, and its ramifications.
The long and the short of it was that an Egpytian national, Abdallah Higazy, was staying in a hotel in New York City on September 11 and the hotel emptied out when the planes hit the towers. The hotel later found in the closet of his room a device that allows you to communicate with airline pilots...So Higazy "confesses" and he's processed by the criminal justice system. His future is quite bleak. Meanwhile, an airline pilot later shows up at the hotel and asks for his radio back....
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