12 Angry Men Named Mohammed

So they're trying Khalid Sheik Mohammed in NYC in a civilian court.

I have always opposed this move because of:
  • downgrading the War on Terror to a criminal prosecution.
  • damage to our intelligence gathering that will come from sharing info with defense lawyers, who will themselves almost certainly have connections with extremists (as lawyers for the mob tend to have mob ties)
  • danger to civilians of having such men on our soil
  • danger to civilians from extremist intimidation (would you want to sit on the jury or be related to the judge that returns a guilty verdict?)
  • expense to the government of multiple trials and re-trials
  • gross injustice to our citizens of crowding our court system --thus delaying justice to our own
  • disgusting notion of extending Miranda and other rights to enemy combatants.
It took NPR precisely 30 seconds from the announcement to give me another objection. Their instinctive reaction? NO questions whatever about the wisdom of the decision. Instead, immediately they ran an interview with an ACLU lawyer fretting about how the poor man will ever get a fair trial.

And indeed, how will he? The lawyer just pulled some questions for potential jurors off the top of his head.

1. Did 9/11 effect you?
2. Are you related to or friends with any emergency responders?

I'm thinking maybe only members of Islamist sleeper cells could pass voir dire.

Update: a nice round-up of responses. I had a moment of paranoia in which it occurred to me that since in a civil court evidence gathered under duress must be tossed out, perhaps Mohammed's confession would be tossed because he was waterboarded and the whole trial would be used as an excuse to flog Bush on that issue again. (This is, after all, the AG who wants to prosecute CIA interrogators). However, I asked Mr. W. to talk me down from the crazy ledge, and he assures me that if Mo. gets off for any reason, there will be a public revolt against judges' technicalities and against the Obama administration.

So I feel slightly better, but this is still a wicked move. Not least because, as in the case of Saddam Hussein's trial, it's a show trial; we know what the result must be. "Process" has overcome "purpose."

Update 2: in comments, Ken asks a question which intensifies my belief that the Administration made this decision without due concern for protecting American citizens:
Has anyone made the point that a public spectacle, in which the "defendants" put the US on trial, will encourage violence by extremists to get "their day in court"?