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One of the arguments being used to justify bringing the 9/11 terrorists to New York City to be tried is to show the Muslim world how just our courts are. The Muslim world will see how we treat people accused of crimes and thereby Muslim radicals won’t want to kill us anymore. In a rational world, such a theory might work. But we don’t live in a rational world. But there is a problem with the presumption of guilt issue. In America, a defendant is presumed innocent until he is proved to be guilty, unless, of course, he’s sitting in an IRS office trying to explain his tax form. When the 9/11 defendants enter that New York court room, in terms of our judicial system, they are innocent. They will be afforded all the legal protections our courts allow. Good attorneys will use all of them to defend their clients, and they will have good attorneys.
Eric Holder, the present Attorney General, has been asked about the possibility that the “alleged” terrorists might go free. Democrat Sen. Herb Kohl of Wisconsin asked it this way: “In the worst case scenario and the trial does not result in conviction, what would be your next steps?” Holder answered: “Failure is not an option.” Hold on. I thought we are going to demonstrate to the Muslim world how just our courts are. If failure is not an option, then it seems to me that these guys are going to be convicted no matter what. If it can’t be done with the first trial, they’ll get them on some other charge in a later trial. They’ll be tried until their fried. Holder is assuming that these “alleged” terrorists are guilty before they even go to trial, and they will be found guilty come hell or high water.
Going to court is treacherous these days. You never know the outcome. I can remember when the Democrats were out to get Oliver North during the Iran-Contra hearings in 1987. The hearings were televised. Big mistake for the Democrats. Our family was vacationing in the Myrtle Beach area that summer. We would gather around the TV and watch Col. North and his lawyer make mincemeat of his accusers. Even so, “Oliver North and John Poindexter were indicted on multiple charges on March 16, 1988. North, indicted on 16 counts, was found guilty by a jury of three minor counts. The convictions were vacated on appeal on the grounds that North’s Fifth Amendment rights may have been violated by the indirect use of his testimony to Congress which had been given under a grant of immunity. In 1990, Poindexter was convicted on several felony counts of conspiracy, lying to Congress, obstruction of justice, and altering and destroying documents pertinent to the investigation. His convictions were also overturned on appeal on similar grounds.” They had to get North on something, so they got him on what turned out to be a trivial item, accepting a $16,000 home security system to protect his wife and children. “North’s convictions were vacated on July 20, 1990, after the appeals court found that witnesses in his trial might have been impermissibly affected by his immunized congressional testimony.” He walked away after four years of legal wrangling. Four years! Now he is a commentator on FOX, a hero to the conservative movement, and a popular best-selling author.
In this day and age, going to trial is a crap shoot. Will the “alleged” terrorists use the judicial proceedings as a platform for their radical ideas? What will the makeup of the jury be like? Does a “jury of your peers” mean Muslims? Since the defendants aren’t American citizens, will they demand an international court? Will Christians and Jews be allowed to sit on the jury? There are 1.4 million Jews living in the New York metropolitan area. In terms of representation, some Jews are bound to be on the jury. If so, how will their presence be viewed by the Muslim world if the “alleged” terrorists are found guilty? America didn’t get the Olympics for 2016, but it might have gotten the biggest international show trial of this new millennium.