RUSH: The comedy of errors that is the decision to try the 9/11 mastermind and his cohorts in a civilian court in Manhattan continues. This morning on NBC’s Today Show, the chief White House correspondent F. Chuck Todd interviewed President Obama in Beijing China, and F. Chuck Todd said, ‘Can you understand why it’s so offensive for some for this terrorist to get all the legal privileges of an American citizen?’
OBAMA: I don’t think it will be offensive at all when he’s convicted and when the death penalty is applied to him.
TODD: But having that kind of confidence in the conviction… I mean, one of the purposes of doing the justice system, going with justice, going with legal and not the military court, is to show off to the world our fairness in our court system. But you’ve also now just said he’s going to be convicted and given the death sentence.
OBAMA: Look, what I said was that people will not be offended if that’s the outcome. I’m not prejudging it. I’m not going to be in that courtroom. That’s the job of the prosecutors, the judge and the jury.
RUSH: He’s already poisoned the case! He says from Beijing that he’s going to be convicted and he’s going to be put to death. And so KSM’s lawyers can say, ‘Hey, this has been prejudged by the president who also admitted my client was tortured.’ There’s something diabolical about this, and it is not about showing the world the fairness of the United States of America. The world doesn’t doubt that. The world that we care about doesn’t doubt that. We do not have a rotten image in the world. It is manufactured by the left in this country and around the world and it’s supported by people like Obama. We do not have a rotten image. We’re on the way to acquiring one, however, because we are going to willingly give away what it was and is that makes this country exceptional and makes this country the place that everybody on this planet wants to come and wishes they lived.
We’ve chronicled on this program all of the pitfalls of this trial: Miranda rights, he didn’t get any; the president admitting that the client was tortured, thereby jeopardizing the validity of the confession and so forth; the circus soap opera aspect; the opportunity for these terrorists to just launch and make their case against the United States in a courtroom in our country that will be broadcast all over the world. But here’s another aspect that I think is worth considering in a sort of generic, overall way. What rules are they going to use in this courtroom? What rules? What precedent? For example, if they apply existing rules and precedent to these cases, which includes Miranda and all the rest, then what? The case has to get thrown out, does it not? And who determines what rules and precedent applies? The judge? And if not, where are these rules written? We don’t have rules for what’s going to happen here. If they should be tried as criminals, then that would seem to require the application of the usual rules of evidence and the usual defenses. If that’s not the case, why bring them to a civilian court in the first place and how are they going to be tried here?
There’s a bit of conventional wisdom that is evolving out there, and it is this: ‘Rush, Rush, Rush, Rush! Don’t worry about this. There’s no judge in the world that’s going to let these guys go. There’s no judge in the world that’s going to let these guys get off — and if that happens, there’s no appellate judge that’s going to let these guys get off.’ Oh, really? Now, that seems to be conventional wisdom because no judge wants to become that kind of a target. Folks, they just confirmed one of the most radical leftist judges in the history of this country yesterday, a guy named Hamilton. You don’t think there’s some ACLU types that are judges who would love to let these guys go who think the United States is the guilty party here? I’m not at all convinced that some judge won’t let him off. The left is so perverted, they have plenty of judges who would probably consider themselves heroes to find the United States guilty here, as opposed to Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.
Remember all the conventional wisdom: ‘Hey, Rush, don’t worry about Bush signing campaign finance reform. The Supreme Court will never, never find it constitutional.’ Today we’ve got campaign finance reform. So all of this conventional wisdom, when it forms, you’ll find old El Rushbo running in the opposite direction. I don’t know if these questions are being asked of Eric Holder today: ‘What rules are you using standard criminal rules, precedent? What rules are you going to be using to try these cases here?’ All the legal defenses, the usual legal defenses would apply. If not, then what does apply, who decides, and how? And what’s the point of all this if the same rules don’t apply? What this is is chaos. And don’t forget one of the ancillary objectives here is to have some international court issue indictments or charges against Bush, Cheney, members of that administration for war crimes and all this. Make no mistake: That’s what Eric Holder and Obama have in mind here.
Now, here’s something else, and some people are talking about this but not loudly enough. Eric Holder has (in my opinion, anyway) a huge conflict of interest and should have recused himself from these decisions. You know why? Eric Holder’s law firm has had a significant role already in defending over a dozen of these terrorists, and that law firm did so when Holder was a senior partner there. No one is asking this question or any of the others I asked today. I know that they own media and so forth and so on. But to not even question regarding Eric Holder’s conflict or to question how the cases will actually be tried is incompetence of the worst kind. This is deadly serious stuff. Now, some of what Holder said today, he called the shooting at Fort Hood ‘tragic.’ No, it was a jihadist massacre. It was a terrorist act. It was not a ‘tragedy.’ He also said that the civilian justice system has been handling terrorism cases successfully for years. He doesn’t mention the case of Mamdouh Salim, the Al-Qaeda founder. He was never brought to trial for 1998 US embassy bombings because he maimed a Bureau of Prisons guard in an escape attempt during which he attempted to kidnap his taxpayer-funded defense lawyers.
Eric Holder said, ‘We can protect classified material because of the Classified Information Procedures Act.’ But, folks, it’s not just classified information that’s helpful to terrorist organizations. The list of people who might be identified as unindicted coconspirators that Andy McCarthy had to turn over in 1995 at his trial of Omar Abdel Rahman wasn’t classified but it told Al-Qaeda who was on the government’s investigative radar screen. This is a disaster! He says we’re going to be able to protect classified information just as we do in a military commissions act, in the military tribunals ’cause they’re based on the same set of rules. Well, they might be based on the same set of rules, but they’re NOT the same set of rules. ‘A civilian trial is no more a platform for Khalid Sheikh Mohammed than a military commission would have been,’ which is ridiculous. This guy was ready to plead guilty and be executed 11 months ago. Whatever soapbox he’s going to have he’s largely already had and while we would have had to let him speak before a sentence was imposed, that would have been the end of it. Now he’s going to get a full-blown trial after combing through the discovery for a couple years, after putting the Bush administration under the spotlight.
And then Dick Durbin got into the act. ‘Durbin claims that no one complained about the Moussaoui trial being in a civilian court.’ Not true. A lot of people did complain, Senator ‘Turban.’ And that trial, if you’ve forgotten, folks, that trial was a circus. The Moussaoui trial was exactly what we’re going to get here. Durbin forgets it; Holder forgets it. The district judge in this case… Look at me. The district judge in the Moussaoui trial actually tried to dismiss the indictment. People may have forgotten that, but I haven’t. And that’s why I’m not convinced at all that the judge in this trial is going to bend over backwards to make sure these guys don’t get off. I know the left. I know how much they have people who despise this country and would love to acquit these guys and have it all blamed on the corrupt, unjust, immoral systems of intelligence gathering, torturous punishment and so forth that has become the United States of America.
The district judge in the Moussaoui trial, Zacarias Moussaoui, ‘actually tried to dismiss the indictment, and that we don’t know what would have happened had Moussaoui not surprised everyone by pleading guilty,’ and he did defend himself. So the judge tried to dismiss the indictment. ‘When the Court of Appeals reinstated the Moussaoui indictment, it also said it was sensitive to the trial judge’s concerns and would look very carefully to ensure that the government made available to Moussaoui all the information he needed to present his defense. What would have happened if Moussaoui had continued to press his demand for access to classified information and testimony from al-Qaeda captives like KSM? We don’t know. If Moussaoui is their shining example of how well the civilian courts handle international terrorism cases during wartime, they’re in trouble.’ And Andy McCarthy reports that a reader at National Review Online remembered some other things, too: ‘Moussaoui was arrested in Minnesota at a time when the military commission system did not yet exist. Unlike KSM & Co., he wasn’t captured in wartime outside the US and detained outside the United States at a time when a military commission system had been implemented.’
So there are enough similarities here but a significant number of differences, too, but enough similarities here to really give us great pause over this — and, folks, I refuse to believe that this is being done, as Holder says, ’cause ‘it’s the right thing to do. We’ve looked at it and I think it’s a fair thing. We’re going to bring these guys to trial.’ Lindsey Grahamnesty has accused Holder of making bad history with this decision. ‘A top Senate Republican on Wednesday accused Attorney General Eric Holder of ‘making bad history’ in his decision to send professed Sept. 11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and his co-conspirators to New York for trial in civilian court. Speaking at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in which Holder testified, Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-SC, raised concerns that the attorney general was imperiling national security by determining that war-time combatants, potentially even Osama bin Laden, might be sent into the criminal system. ‘We’re making bad history here,’ Graham said. ‘The big problem I have is that you’re criminalizing the war. … I think you’ve made a fundamental mistake here.’ … ‘I know that we are at war,’ Holder declared.’
A little side note: Lindsey Grahamnesty voted to confirm Eric Holder as attorney general.
RUSH: Now let me give you a couple of other things to think about here based on the salient (and I might add, brilliant) questions I asked moments ago: What rules are going to be used in this trial? Standard criminal justice rules, like Miranda? Rules of evidence, rules of discovery? If not, what rules will be used? And who’s going to make ’em? Let’s assume here that standard rules that have been established over time in our legal system were used. Remember something here — and I know this statement is going to be controversial to some who don’t know it. The ACLU’s original goal was to bring down the US legal system. Now, think about something here. There are going to be a lot of precedents set in this trial. For example, let’s just look at Miranda. Right now, every suspect has to be read his rights and is told he doesn’t have to say a word, that he can get a lawyer.
But if he says something, it can be used against him. Now, if these clowns, if these terrorists are convicted without having been Mirandized, what does that precedent set? If he can be convicted without being Mirandized, if he didn’t get his habeas corpus rights, can’t they then be denied to us in the future, under this precedent? Well, but they’re being given every constitutional protection as though they were citizens. See, this is the point. They get Mirandized, or they don’t get Mirandized, and they get convicted. So a precedent is set that suspects do not need to be Mirandized and they can still be found guilty. Okay, so then you end up in the court system, and they don’t Mirandize you, and you say, ‘Wait a minute, I wasn’t Mirandized!’
‘Well, the rules are different now. The terrorist trials said that –‘
‘Wait a minute! Those guys weren’t citizens!’
‘Doesn’t matter, they were still tried in a US civilian court, criminal court in New York.’
Let me go to an extreme. If the president of the United States can tell the world that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed was tortured, and then did not get Mirandized, and was convicted, does that mean that the rest of us can then be waterboarded? If we’re going to convict anybody, despite being waterboarded, and they got their confession after that waterboarding, then is torture — as they define it — now permitted by officials? Even though these are military people that did it? This is why this doesn’t belong anywhere near a US civilian court, ladies and gentlemen. Habeas corpus rights, the same thing. Can’t they then be denied to us in the future under the precedent that’s going to be set here?
And a friend of mine sends another brilliant point. He says: ‘If the goal of the civilian trials is to showcase to the world the fairness of our system, it’s going to have exactly the opposite effect. Holder’s explicit promise is that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is so clearly guilty that he can never be acquitted. And even if he were, [that] the government won’t let him walk away anyway sends what message? That our judicial system is rigged! That the result of the trial is fixed in advance — and that’s how the Islamic world’s going to interpret it.’ So this is a disaster. It’s insane. It is diabolical and it is insidious and I refuse to believe these people are that stupid. But it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter if they’re diabolical or if they’re stupid. The result is still the same: Rotten.
So here we got this big, ‘Oh-ho! We know the world hates us because of George Bush! The world hates America! We have destroyed our image of being a beacon of freedom and fairness and morality, and here we tortured, Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo Bay… Oh, it’s horrible what we did! Oh, we flushed a Koran down the toilet’ even though we didn’t ‘at Guantanamo Bay. Oh, but we’ve gotta do this! We have got to show the world that our values are back and that we are fair. So we’re going to put these guys on trial. We’re not gonna hang ’em, we’re not going to execute them at dawn in front of a firing squad, but we’re going to give ’em a fair trial.’ Except (laughing) the president has already convicted ’em. He’s already said they’re going to get the death penalty. Holder has said (paraphrase), ‘They’re so clearly guilty that there’s no way they’re going to get acquitted, and even if they are, we’re not letting ’em go.’ And the rest of the world is supposed to see this as the new, reborn United States of Fairness, Justice, and Equality? What an abomination this administration is!
RUSH: Now, more on the Moussaoui trial, ladies and gentlemen, because here we’ve got the president in China (being lambasted by the ChiComs, by the way, on our debt) and the president says, ‘Eh, he’s going to be convicted. He’s going to get the death penalty. People will like it then.’ So he’s already prejudged the case. Holder has said the same thing: ‘Oh, he’s so clearly guilty the guy’s going to fry — and if he doesn’t, we’re not going to let him go anyway.’ Washington Post, May 12th, 2006: ”One Juror Between Terrorist and Death; Moussaoui Foreman Recalls Frustration — Only one juror stood between the death penalty and Zacarias Moussaoui and that juror frustrated his colleagues because he never explained his vote, according to the foreman of the jury that sentenced the al-Qaeda operative to life in prison last week. The foreman, a Northern Virginia math teacher, said in an interview that the panel voted 11 to 1, 10 to 2 and 10 to 2 in favor of the death penalty on three terrorism charges for which Moussaoui was eligible for execution. A unanimous vote on any one of them would have resulted in a death sentence. The foreman said deliberations reached a critical point on the third day, when the process nearly broke down.’
Then, on April 6th of 2006, Richard Cohen, a column: ‘Let Moussaoui Live.’ The libs, they didn’t want to execute Moussaoui. You think we’re not going to be able to find a couple wacko jurors and a judge? Let’s go to audio sound bite number three, Mike. This is Holder today swearing in his opening statement that justice is why he decided to try these terrorists in New York City.
HOLDER: For eight years, justice has been delayed for the victims of the 9/11 attacks. It has been delayed even further —
RUSH: Stop the tape, stop the tape, stop the tape. That’s another slam at Bush — and it was the libs that caused these delays! It was libs and lawyers who were getting in the way trying to stop the military tribunals. They did everything they could to delay this. Recue that, Mike. Here’s Holder now once again dumping on Bush. ‘It’s time, it’s time, eight years, justice has been delayed.’ Listen to the rest.
HOLDER: For eight years, justice has been delayed for the victims of the 9/11 attacks. It has been delayed even further for the victims of the attack on the USS Cole. No longer. No more delay. It is time. It is past time to finally act, by bringing prosecutions in both our courts and military commissions, by seeking the death penalty, by holding these terrorists responsible for their actions, we are finally taking ultimate steps toward justice. That is why I made the decision.
RUSH: That is an outrage. Only now with Obama in are we actually going to take some action on these guys? Only now? Bush didn’t care? Well, which was it? You guys cannot have it both ways. You can’t say that Bush was out there torturing these guys and masterminding all the torture and making sure these guys paid the price and now say he had nothing to do with it, that he was lackadaisical, lazy and wasn’t moving on this. And about punctuality, how many years before we even get to opening statements in this stupid trial? Do you realize how many years it’s going to take with the discovery process and all the motions that the defense will file to delay this? Jeff Sessions had an exchange with Holder.
SESSIONS: I don’t think the American people are overreacting. I don’t think they’re acting fearfully. I think they think that this is war and that the decision you made to try these cases in federal court represents a policy or a political decision. Wouldn’t you agree?
SESSIONS: It’s a policy decision at least, is it not?
HOLDER: It was a policy decision. It was a decision that was case driven. It’s a decision based on the evidence that I know and, frankly, some of the people who have criticized the decision do not have access to.
RUSH: Ohhhh, there’s secret stuff, huh, that we don’t know? How about the secret stuff that your law firm where you were a senior partner defended 18 of these same kinds of guys, defended them? Anybody else would recuse themselves and anybody else the pressure would be on to recuse. Now we move on to sound bite 22, and this is the exchange between Lindsey Grahamnesty and Eric Holder. Grahamnesty says, ‘Let’s say we capture Bin Laden tomorrow. When does custodial interrogation begin in his case? If we capture Bin Laden tomorrow, would he be entitled to Miranda warnings at the moment of capture?’
HOLDER: Again, that, uh, it all depends —
GRAHAM: Well, it does not depend. If you’re going to prosecute anybody in civilian court, our law is clear that the moment custodial interrogation occurs, the defendant, the criminal defendant is entitled to a lawyer and to be informed of their right to remain silent. The big problem I have is that you’re criminalizing the war, that if we caught Bin Laden tomorrow, we have mixed theories and we couldn’t turn him over to the CIA, the FBI, or military intelligence for an interrogation on the battlefield because now we’re saying that he is subject to criminal court in the United States, and you’re confusing the people fighting this war.
RUSH: Exactly right. And who in the world is going to want to join the intelligence agencies now with the possibility their work is going to be made public and brought into court in trials of these people? On this one, I mean, I gotta say Grahamnesty is right. This is why I was asking: What rules? What rules? He says our law is clear. The moment custodial interrogation occurs the defendant is entitled to a lawyer and to be informed of their right to remain silent — and that didn’t happen to Khalid Sheikh Mohammed or any of these other clowns. And if they’re convicted without having been Mirandized don’t they have an automatic appeal to get the thing thrown out? This is sick stuff.
By the way, you want to hear something funny? Chuck-U Schumer moments ago — I was reading it on the closed-captioning here on the TV — is asking Attorney General Holder if he, meaning the federal government, will reimburse New York City for the cost of security during these trials. Now, wait a second. You know what’s funny about this? We just yesterday were told by Dick ‘Turban’ and a number of other Democrats all the jobs that are going to be created by bringing terrorists to the United States. Oh, yeah, we could bring 200 of these clowns from Gitmo, put them in an Illinois prison and Durbin is out there talking, ‘Whoa, look at all the jobs created! Schools, roads, bridges, all the jobs.’ So they made the joke yesterday that seems to be the Democrat job creation theory is to bring every terrorist we can find into this country and we’ll create jobs like we’ve never seen before. And yet the next day, here is Chuck-U Schumer asking to be reimbursed for the costs of the security. I thought bringing terrorists here was going to create all kinds of jobs! Apparently that’s not the case.
RUSH: By the way, folks, this audio sound bite we played, sound bite number three? Grab that real quick. I just want the first couple sentences here. Eric Holder was talking about the delays. It’s just been too long. It is time to finally act.
HOLDER: For eight years, justice has been delayed for the victims of the 9/11 attacks. It has been delayed even further for the victims of the attack on the USS Cole. No longer.
RUSH: Stop the tape! Attorney General Holder, we’ve got you. It’s been delayed even further for the victims of the attack on the USS Cole. The USS Cole was bombed in Yemen in the year 2000. You know who was deputy attorney general? Eric Holder! The current attorney general was the deputy AG in 2000 when the Cole was bombed, and the Clinton Justice Department never even filed an indictment. That didn’t happen until the Bush Department of Justice filed one after 9/11. Have you no shame, Mr. Holder? These Republicans that voted for this guy to be confirmed, some of them are backtracking now. Byron York had that story yesterday. It’s a little too late now because all this was known about this guy. It was known who he is, just as it was known who Obama is. And what about justice for the Khobar Towers bombing in 1996? That was investigated on Holder’s watch. He was deputy AG then. No indictment ever filed by the Clinton administration. The charges, again, were finally brought by the Bush administration years later.
You know, Clinton never paid a dime’s worth of attention to terrorism because Clinton didn’t take on tough issues. He was obsessed in the second term with Lewinsky, a semen-stained blue dress and keeping the approval numbers up while sending Carville and The Forehead out to destroy Ken Starr — and that’s when terrorism was a criminal matter to boot. That’s when Jamie Gorelick and Reno had made it a criminal matter and they weren’t even pursuing it all. (interruption) Well, I know he had a terrorism summit. I know he fired a bomb into an Iraqi building on a Saturday night that killed a custodian, and he bombed an aspirin factory somewhere in Africa, a Tylenol factory or whatever it was. But Clinton refused to intervene with the Saudis to let the FBI conduct the investigation of Khobar Towers and interview the witnesses. Do you remember that? See, Clinton was trying to engage the mullahs and strike the grand deal with Iran, but somehow seeking justice and applying the rule of law wasn’t all that important back then. When Eric Holder was deputy AG they aren’t paying a dime’s worth of attention to terrorism. Holder goes out there today (summarized), ‘Well, it’s been too long. It’s been too long. We’re going to get in gear; we’re going to fry these guys.’ Ha.
RUSH: Just to sum all this up, folks, this Holder guy and this whole administration offends me each and every day. I try not to give people the power to offend me, but these people infuriate me. They probably more than offend me; they infuriate me. Obama’s people, including Holder, are fictionalizing the facts. It was a Democrat president, Bill Clinton, who did nothing about the ’93 bombing at the World Trade Center. It was Bill Clinton, a Democrat president, who did nothing about the buildings being blown up in Kenya or the USS Cole or the Khobar Towers and Iraq and Afghanistan, respectively. He did zilch, zero, nada. What Clinton did was bomb Kosovo and the Chinese embassy in the Balkans, and a building in Iraq with a custodian. Remember he bombed the Chinese embassy ‘by mistake’? The military got that wrong.