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McConnell: Obama Admin Must Get Foreign Terror Suspects Out Of Courts In Kentucky And Into Gitmo | Missouri Political News Service

McConnell: Obama Admin Must Get Foreign Terror Suspects Out Of Courts In Kentucky And Into Gitmo

June 16th, 2011 by mopns · No Comments

The AP reported Tuesday, “The top-ranking Republican in the U.S. Senate wants two Iraqis facing terrorism-related charges in Kentucky sent to the prison at Guantanamo Bay rather than allow them to face trial in a civilian court. Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, spoke on the Senate floor Tuesday morning and called 30-year-old Waad Ramadan Alwan and 23-year-old Mohanad Shareef Hammadi ‘foreign fighters’ who should be subject to the same system as combatants caught on a battlefield. McConnell said sending the men to the facility on the southeastern tip of Cuba is the best way to ensure that there will be no disruptions that could come with a civilian trial. ‘Send them to Guantanamo where they belong. Get these terrorists out of the civilian system — and out of our backyards,’ McConnell said. ‘And give them the justice they deserve.’”

The AP also offers some background on the suspects: “Alwan and Hammadi are charged in a 23-count indictment with conspiring to send weapons and money to Al-Qaida in Iraq. Alwan is also charged with attacking American soldiers in Iraq. A grand jury in Bowling Green charged the men last month. . . . Alwan is charged with conspiracy to kill a United States national, conspiracy to use a weapon of mass destruction and attempting to provide material support to terrorists. Hammadi is charged with attempting to provide material support to terrorists and knowingly transferring, possessing or exporting a device designed or intended to launch or guide a rocket or missile. Authorities say the weapons and money from Alwan and Hammadi didn’t make it to Iraq because of a tightly controlled undercover investigation. The FBI said in an affidavit that Alwan spoke of setting roadside bombs near Bayji, Iraq from 2003 through 2006. The FBI said investigators found his fingerprints on an unexploded bomb, but didn’t match the prints to Alwan until January. . . . Alwan and Hammadi were admitted into the United States with refugee status in 2009. Homeland Security officials have said the men slipped through cracks in the system that have since been fixed.”

Unfortunately, the Justice Department has decided to process Alwan and Hammadi through the federal civilian court system in Kentucky, instead of putting them into the military commission system designed to try foreign terror suspects.

Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell explained the problems with this approach to John King on CNN last night: “You can put foreigners in U.S. Article III courts but the question is, should you? The answer is: you should not for a whole variety of reasons. Number one, you bring the war on terror to Bowling Green, Kentucky. You have security problems with regard to the judge, the prosecutor, the jurors. You have security problems that the local government ends up having to pick up – related to the transferring of prisoners back and forth between the jail, if you will, or the prison and the court system. . . . There’s no reason for American communities to be subjected to this. You remember the administration thought about doing it with KSM, Khalid Sheikh Mohammad, the master mind behind 9/11, he’s at Guantanamo. They were going to take him to New York and be tried there. You saw the reaction of New York to the possibility of this foreign terrorist being tried in New York. You’re going to have the same reaction in Bowling Green, Kentucky. This is not a place for these characters.”


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