Is Obama Caving on the Manhattan KSM Trial?

January 29, 2010

The New York Daily News reported last night (Thursday, 1/29/2010):

The White House ordered the Justice Department Thursday night to consider other places to try the 9/11 terror suspects after a wave of opposition to holding the trial in lower Manhattan.

The dramatic turnabout came hours after Mayor Bloomberg said he would prefer that they did it elsewhere and then spoke to Attorney General Eric Holder.

Well, the dam appears to be breaking on ostensibly what is the easiest of the Jack Bauer War issues facing the Obama Administration: that is, where to try KSM. I say ostensibly because the matter of where to try KSM will not be as easy it may seem.

All this being said, there are all sorts of conflicting stories about whether or not this will happen. See Jack Fosters piece at NRO.

According to the Daily News account four options are being considered all in New York State: 1) Governors Island (near Manhattan and Brooklyn); 2) West Point, N.Y. (U.S. Military Academy); 3) Newburgh, N.Y. (Stewart Air National Guard Base); and 4) Otisville, NY (Federal Correction Institution).

Why wont this be so easy? First, leaving aside Governors Island, these communities will go crazy in opposition. Even Governors Island may not leave New Yorkers feeling warm and fuzzy. Second, a civilian trial will still be a disaster. Think Slobodan Milosevic turning the Hague into a circus for a year. Enormous damage will be done to the national security. Third, the cost will still be enormous. Fourth, what civilian will risk his or his familys well-being to sit on the jury? Can the jurors identity be protected?

I guess the good news is that they can always move the trial back to Guantanamo. Didnt KSM already plead guilty before a military commission down there and ask to be executed? Oh, I forgot, he was given the mass-murdering-jihadist-criminal-procedure-do-over-and-mulligan.

So, how long does Eric Holder have left as Attorney General?