Thursday, December 31, 2009

Now we know what the Obama administration will do with a ticking time bomb

Whenever people start debating how to treat captured terrorists the show-stopper question: what would you do with a prisoner who knows information about an imminent attack? This is the almost proverbial debate over the ticking time bomb. Well, now we have such a prisoner. Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the undie bomber, is such a person. And, as Victoria Toensing points out, he could be a fount of important information.
Where was Abdulmutallab trained? Who trained him? Where is the training facility located? Where is the stash of PETN, the explosive used in the bomb? What are the techniques he was told to use for getting through airport security? Was there a well-dressed man who helped him board the plane without a passport as claimed by another passenger? And, most important, are future attacks planned?
Stories came out this week that he told the FBI that there are 25 Yemeni-trained terrorists just waiting to finish their training and then go ahead to kill as many Westerners as possible.
The reports come after The Sun revealed that cops fear that 25 British-born Muslims are plotting to bomb Western airliners.

The fanatics, in five groups, are now training at secret terror camps in Yemen.

It was there London-educated Abdulmutallab prepared for his Christmas Day bid to blow up a US jet.

The British extremists in Yemen are in their early 20s and from Bradford, Luton and Leytonstone, East London.

They are due to return to the UK early in 2010 and will then await internet instructions from al-Qaeda on when to strike.

A Scotland Yard source said: "The great fear is Abdulmutallab is the first of many ready to attack planes and kill tens of thousands.

"We know there are four or five radicalised British Muslim cells in the Yemen.

Armed officers were also spotted around the airport site and all the luggage was laid out in a long line on the tarmac to be thoroughly searched.

"They are due back within months when they will be under constant surveillance."

The 25 suspects, of Pakistani and Somali descent, were radicalised in UK mosques.

Some had been to university and studied engineering or computer sciences.

Others were former street gang members.

Special Branch monitored them as they flew to Yemen, in the Middle East, from British airports in the spring and summer.

In almost every case, their tickets were paid for in cash and bought less than a week before travel.

The source added: "Imams would have promised them rewards in heaven for becoming suicide bombers prepared to kill Westerners."
And now we have in our possession someone who trained alongside these guys. Wouldn't you like for us to know what he knows? I'm not saying that he has to be tortured; but I would like him to get some intensive questioning in an undisclosed location. And if he has to be deprived of sleep or humiliated or sit in the cold that's fine with me.

But that isn't what is going to happen with this guy. Now we know what will happen with the ticking time bomb in Obama's administration. He'll get a lawyer and clam up.
Abdulmutallab remains in a Detroit area prison and, after initial debriefings by the FBI, has restricted his cooperation since securing a defense attorney, according to federal officials.
The Obama administration has determined that any terrorist captured will get all the civil protections of the American Constitution in our criminal courts. We have tried enemy combatants in military commissions since the Revolutionary War. Under Barack Obama and Eric Holder we won't use a military commission even for the guy who planned 9/11, so now we know what will happen with Abdulmutallab. As Toensing writes,
Abdulmutallab is not a United States citizen. By detonating a bomb on an airplane filled with 269 civilians, he committed an illegal act of war. A military commission, which has been used for such conduct since Gen. George Washington, will give him due process. But first, he must be interrogated.
Alas, that won't happen under the Obama-approved procedures for fighting the war on terror.