Miranda Rights for Terrorists, New Obama Policy?

American Thinker | by Rick Moran | Nov. 19, 2009

Does Osama bin Laden need to be read his Miranda rights if we capture him? The question put to Attorney General Eric Holder (who was appointed by President Obama) by Lindsey Graham got this response:

Again I’m not — that all depends. I mean, the notion that we —

Such clarity of thought is about par for the course in the Obama administration.

Credit Graham here for boring in and not letting the AG wiggle away. Some other tidbits from Holder’s appearance before the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday from Noel Sheppard’s post at Newsbusters:

GRAHAM: If bin Laden were caught tomorrow, would it be the position of this administration that he would be brought to justice?

HOLDER: He would certainly be brought to justice, absolutely.

GRAHAM: Where would you try him?

HOLDER: Well, we’d go through our protocol. And we’d make the determination about where he should appropriately be tried. […]

GRAHAM: If we captured bin Laden tomorrow, would he be entitled to Miranda warnings at the moment of capture?

HOLDER: Again I’m not — that all depends. I mean, the notion that we —

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’d 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.

Noel also points to a question about the history of trying enemy combatants in civilian court that the AG was simply unable to answer.

This is unprecedented, of course. And the Obama administration’s point man has yet to give us a good reason why it is better to try KSM in New York rather than before a military tribunal.

. . . more


4 thoughts on “Miranda Rights for Terrorists, New Obama Policy?”

  1. From a Weekly Standard story from June 2009:

    When 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammad was captured on March 1, 2003, he was not cooperative. “I’ll talk to you guys after I get to New York and see my lawyer,” he said, according to former CIA Director George Tenet.

    Of course, KSM did not get a lawyer until months later, after his interrogation was completed, and Tenet says that the information the CIA obtained from him disrupted plots and saved lives. “I believe none of these successes would have happened if we had had to treat KSM like a white-collar criminal – read him his Miranda rights and get him a lawyer who surely would have insisted that his client simply shut up,” Tenet wrote in his memoirs.

    If Tenet is right, it’s a good thing KSM was captured before Barack Obama became president. For, the Obama Justice Department has quietly ordered FBI agents to read Miranda rights to high value detainees captured and held at U.S. detention facilities in Afghanistan, according a senior Republican on the House Intelligence Committee. “The administration has decided to change the focus to law enforcement. Here’s the problem. You have foreign fighters who are targeting US troops today – foreign fighters who go to another country to kill Americans. We capture them…and they’re reading them their rights – Mirandizing these foreign fighters,” says Representative Mike Rogers, who recently met with military, intelligence and law enforcement officials on a fact-finding trip to Afghanistan.

    Rogers, a former FBI special agent and U.S. Army officer, says the Obama administration has not briefed Congress on the new policy. “I was a little surprised to find it taking place when I showed up because we hadn’t been briefed on it, I didn’t know about it. We’re still trying to get to the bottom of it, but it is clearly a part of this new global justice initiative.”

  2. Would you agree that aiding or abetting the enemy is TREASON ??

    If so…. then giving “Our Enemy” a stage in New York City… IS TREASON !

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