Patterico's Pontifications

12/31/2009

Interrogating Abdulmutallab

Filed under: Law,Terrorism — DRJ @ 7:30 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The United States has filed a federal criminal complaint against Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, charging him with attempting to destroy a Northwest Airlines plane by detonating a high-explosive device. Abdulmutallab has undoubtedly been advised of his Miranda rights and at his initial court hearing, Abdulmutallab told the court he didn’t have funds for an attorney. The judge said the court would assign him one.

Victoria Toensing notes important questions that U.S. intelligence needs to ask Abdulmutallab:

“Questions need to be answered. Where was Abdulmutallab trained? Who trained him? Where is the training facility located? Where is the stash of PETN, the explosive used in the bomb? What are the techniques he was told to use for getting through airport security? Was there a well-dressed man who helped him board the plane without a passport as claimed by another passenger? And, most important, are future attacks planned?

Yes, we could try him first and then interrogate him. But by then the information is stale, especially if he utilizes the same legal challenges Moussaoui did to drag out the process for years.”

But we can’t question Abdulmutallab because, as a criminal defendant, he has the right to remain silent. President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder have chosen this course but this Rasmussen poll demonstrates they are in the minority:

“Seventy-one percent (71%) of all voters think the attempt by the Nigerian Muslim to blow up the airliner as it landed in Detroit should be investigated by military authorities as a terrorist act. Only 22% say it should be handled by civilian authorities as a criminal act, as is currently the case.”

What’s more, 58% of Americans would use waterboarding and other aggressive techniques to gain information from Abdulmutallab. In other words, for the moment, more Americans agree with Dick Cheney than Barack Obama.

— DRJ

37 Responses to “Interrogating Abdulmutallab”

  1. “… In other words, for the moment, more Americans agree with Dick Cheney than Barack Obama.”

    And Ear Leader and his accolytes are learning an uncomfortable truth:
    The American People can discern who is a serious man, and who is just a poseur.

    “Got Gravitas?”

    AD - RtR/OS! (c7228f)

  2. “In other words, for the moment, more Americans agree with Dick Cheney than Barack Obama.”

    Ushering in the new year to the sound of liberal heads assploding!!!!11!!eleventy!!

    daleyrocks (718861)

  3. Obama is so not fit for this job.

    Jack (e383ed)

  4. how about a TA-312, a couple of feet of WD-1, and some alligator clips?

    get him to talk, confirm what he says, then stand his ass against the nearest wall and shoot him dead, as you would any unlawful combatant under international law.

    no more “Mr. Nice Guy”: Oderint Dum Metuant.

    redc1c4 (fb8750)

  5. The public is already aroused about this case because of the visa issue. Now, they will get an object lesson in why Bush and Cheney were right about terrorists. The KSM trial, if Holder is stupid enough to go through with it, will just emphasize the point that much more. I don’t understand these people. They are supposed to understand politics.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  6. We have a real shit for president and a real asshole for attorney general or a real asshole for president and a real shit for attorney general. I am not sure which???

    I expect somewhere along the line some real o supporters will get blown up–just like you might expect in detroit michigan (if the bomb worked).

    Jim (582155)

  7. 71% say“should be investigated by military authorities as a terrorist act.”

    Not the Militaries job in fact very unconstitutional. Wow I guess we no longer trust this government. This poll result I find to be amazing and disturbing.

    Sanmon (319c0c)

  8. How is it that the current Democratic President and his administration have forgotten how the FDR administration treated wartime enemies who came — out of uniform, trying to mingle among us — to kill Americans on our soil? Ex parte Quirin, 317 U.S. 1 (1942), is ample justification for Abdulmutallab to be in a brig undergoing the most rigorous of questioning sans lawyers, to be followed by an eventual trial by military tribunal after the last pips of actionable intelligence has been extracted from him.

    Beldar (bc4d0c)

  9. Beldar – Extremely short and selective memories, just like the commenter in #6.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  10. The tribunals relied on Quirin, the three major decisions on the subject, ignored that case and Eisentrager, forcing the circumstance where AL Rubbaish and Al Shehri were released to terrorize again

    bishop (cd6b99)

  11. Help educate me daleyrocks, and Beldar. When did we declare war on Yemen, Nigeria, or currently any other country? Or what nation has declared war on us currently?

    I have no issue with interrogation with what ever means needed. I just have an issue with not following our laws. I agree our laws have not kept up with current issues in the world. That needs to be addressed and soon.

    3. The President’s Proclamation of July 2, 1942, declaring that all persons who are citizens or subjects of, or who act under the direction of, any nation at war with the United States, and who during time of war enter the United States through coastal or boundary defenses, and are charged with committing or attempting to commit sabotage, espionage, hostile acts, or violations of the law of war, “shall be subject to the law of war and to the jurisdiction of military tribunals,” does not bar accused persons from access to the civil courts for the purpose of determining the applicability of the Proclamation to the particular case; nor does the Proclamation, which in terms denied to such persons access to the courts, nor the enemy alienage of the accused, foreclose consideration by the civil courts of the contention that the Constitution and laws of the United States forbid their trial by military commission. P. 317 U. S. 24.

    Sanmon (319c0c)

  12. I have no issue with interrogation with what ever means needed. I just have an issue with not following our laws

    Pick one. You don’t get both in cases like this.

    Either we do whatever it takes to extract every possible iota of useful information, or he gets a remain silent and be advised by counsel.

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  13. Help educate me daleyrocks, and Beldar. When did we declare war on Yemen, Nigeria, or currently any other country?

    This is where

    Relevant quote:

    (a) IN GENERAL- That the President is authorized to use all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons, in order to prevent any future acts of international terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons.

    [emphasis added]

    Some chump (d97978)

  14. Scott Jacobs- I may not like our current laws that does not mean we should discard your rights to so that we can interrogate Abdulmutallab.

    Some chump- When did President Obama determine Abdulmutallab is subject to this?

    We may want to look closer at Military Commissions act of 2009 to understand the issue. President Obama signed it into law in late October.

    Don’t get me wrong my main point is our current laws do not reflect our current situation. We must still be a nation of Laws not emotions. If we legally can turn Abdulmutallab over to CIA or if the FBI has authority to interrogate without defense lawyers present I am all for it. If we legally can use enhanced interrogation on him, I am all for it. In addition our Military should not ever be used for enhanced interrogation. That is against the law and should always remain so.

    Sanmon (319c0c)

  15. He behaved as an ‘unlawful enemy combatant,’ not abiding by the rules of war, by all rights we should be interrogating him, not by the FBI, but by
    the CIA team that the Times and ABC burned

    bishop (cd6b99)

  16. Sanmon:

    “I may not like our current laws that does not mean we should discard your rights to so that we can interrogate Abdulmutallab.”

    [Standard lefty strawman – no rights are discarded]

    “When did President Obama determine Abdulmutallab is subject to this?”

    [Is an affirmative declaration required for interogation – citation please?]

    “We may want to look closer at Military Commissions act of 2009 to understand the issue.”

    Oh Noes! “With the signing of the legislation at the White House, defense officials now have 90 days to update rules and procedures for the commissions. At least a dozen suspected Al Qaeda members and leaders – including self-proclaimed 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed – are already slated for commission trials. The Obama administration is expected to soon announce which other detainees will also face military justice through the revised commission system.

    The 2009 law retains the basic structure of the existing commissions. A military judge presides over the trial, ruling on issues of law and evidence, and a panel of US service members decides issues of fact and guilt or innocence. The panel can range from five members in lesser cases to at least 12 in trials involving a potential death sentence. Under the law, the president must give his personal approval before an execution may be carried out.”

    http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Justice/2009/1029/p02s01-usju.html

    Sanmon, what was the point you were attempting to make?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  17. Some chump- When did President Obama determine Abdulmutallab is subject to this?

    I can’t tell if you’re being honestly inquisitive, or just disingenuous.

    Are you not aware that Al Qaeda has claimed responsibility for this act? That Abdulmutallab belonged to Al Qeada? That Al Qaeda has already been determined to be responsible for the 9/11 attacks?

    Some chump (d97978)

  18. Comment by Sanmon — 1/1/2010 @ 9:15 am

    Since the AUMF has not been repealed, the current Administration is derelict in its’ duties not to use it to enhance the security of the citizens, and the Constitution, that it is sworn to uphold and protect, against all enemies, foreign and domestic.

    The crotch-bomber is precisely one who falls under the provisions of the AUMF (which is, in other words, a “Declaration of War”, though it doesn’t use that language, but nothing in the Constitution proscribes what is, in effect, a “Declaration of War”), a perfectly proper legislative act undertaken in a bi-partisan manner.

    It is not one with which you may agree, but we get saddled by Congress’ with a lot of crap over which we do not agree; but, that doesn’t change its’ lawfullness.

    AD - RtR/OS! (cd4296)

  19. Comment by Some chump — 1/1/2010 @ 10:26 am

    …and that AQ declared WAR upon the United States over ten years ago!

    AD - RtR/OS! (cd4296)

  20. “Seventy-one percent (71%) of all voters think the attempt by the Nigerian Muslim to blow up the airliner as it landed in Detroit should be investigated by military authorities as a terrorist act.

    Original point and let me be clear IT IS NOT THE MILITARIES JOB NOR DUTY! AND I DON’T WANT TO BECOME A BANNA REPUBLIC IN THIS COUNTRY!

    I Fully agree that our laws, our Congress, and our President are failing us and are going to get us KILLED.

    Stop confusing Battlefield vs Civilian airliner. You want to consider me a lefty for my views fine. When some of you are the ones throwing out liberal pivot points.

    This does not change the fact:
    THAT OUR MILITARY SHOULD NOT BE THE ONE INVESTIGATING THIS ACT OF TERRORISM ON A CIVILIAN AIRLINER, PERIOD!

    Sanmon (319c0c)

  21. You might not like it that a civilian airliner was chosen to be a battlefield, but that is the reality:
    Our enemy, AQ, chose this airliner to be a battlefield, just as it chose four airliners to be battlefields on 9/11/01 in its’ quest to destroy the Great Infidel that it (AQ) declared war upon back in the 1990’s.

    An act of war, is an Act of War!

    Just as, due wholly to the acts of the Islamic Republic of Iran, a State of War exists between that nation and the United States of America since November of 1979.

    Inconvenient Facts!…but facts nevertheless.

    AD - RtR/OS! (cd4296)

  22. Comment by AD – RtR/OS!

    So you want our military personnel to be brought up on charges like is currently happening to 3 Navy Seals. There are very tight rules and laws regarding Military conduct that is why the CIA did the investigation of KSM and Abu Zubaydah.

    Inconvenient Facts!…but facts nevertheless.

    Sanmon (319c0c)

  23. I don’t care who investigates “crotch bomber”, just as long as it is not a “criminal justice” matter, but is a “national security” matter.

    But, just as a Federal Judge threw out the case against the Blackwater operators who were hired to protect DeptState personnel (and did so), the powers that be within DoD need to Deep-Six this prosecution if they expect anyone to ever accomplish this type of mission in the future – they are recreating the Carterization of the Military when the force began to hollow-out as experienced members bailed for civilian life.
    Plus, the case against the Seals is not for inappropriate investigation, but for an alleged assault.

    The whole point of this argument is that Umar has in his possession actionable intell that needs to be exploited, and that cannot be done in a LE setting when he “lawyer’s up”.

    AD - RtR/OS! (cd4296)

  24. Stop confusing Battlefield vs Civilian airliner.

    I’m not.

    THAT OUR MILITARY SHOULD NOT BE THE ONE INVESTIGATING THIS ACT OF TERRORISM ON A CIVILIAN AIRLINER, PERIOD!

    The problem is that terrorists aren’t content to fight on a battlefield, they go after civilian airliners. And when we’re already at war with the terrorists, their attacks on civilian airliners are acts of war.

    Some chump (d97978)

  25. Given how the Bush admin ended up caving when it came to Padilla (and Ramdi?) because they knew they would lose I fail to see how it’s in anyone’s interest for military tribunals to even be considered for this case. now. All that would accomplish would be screwing up a strong case against the guy and a possible court order to let him go. And with the intervening court decisions the officials might not even get qualified immunity this time around for a transfer to military custody.

    Honestly it just sounds like one of those feel good ideas that ignores the long term consequences.

    Soronel Haetir (2b4c2b)

  26. Simple solution would have been President Barack Obama could have placed his signature on a Presidential Finding and transfered Abdulmutallab to a 3 letter organization in the government. We could have gotten the information Abdulmutallab had, which is minimal.

    Abdulmutallab is a minor pawn that Al Queda is using to probe and distract. Al Queda got the information it was looking for. This minor pawn was not going to be very informative, but we could have sent a message back to Al Queda if Abdulmutallab would have disappeared for a few months.

    Just leave the Military out of this, they are not set up for this type of investigation nor of the questioning of prisoners of this type.

    Sanmon (319c0c)

  27. BTW, Sanmon, your argument is not with those on this site, but with the Rasmussen Orginization, they’re the ones who posed the question to the American People.

    Our position (well, at least mine as expressed above, and I assume it is shared by many) is that this is a National Security problem and needs to be pursued in that manner, and it is not within the purvue of the Law Enforcement community.

    Hell, if you want to turn Umar over to the CIA (or any other alphabet-soup entity) for rendition to ……., feel free, it’s fine with me, and something BHO supports, I believe.

    It is just that the American People responded to a question over whether or not they thought (in the shorthand used by the poller) this should be handled as a Law Enforcement matter, or one of National Security.

    You just don’t like the choice that the American People have made on this matter; and I don’t like the choice they made last November, but I’m trying to be civil about it.

    AD - RtR/OS! (cd4296)

  28. I think a group headed by the FBI, not the military, conducts interrogations of terror detainees at Guantanamo now.

    DRJ (84a0c3)

  29. You just don’t like the choice that the American People have made on this matter

    Your right I do not like the 71% poll. I am very concerned when people believe life is like what a TV show NCIS and news like John Stewart make the Military out to be.

    I don’t like it when Americans hang our Service members out to dry and then because a pawn of Al Queda does a no no they want the Military to take the lead. It’s BS. It is Banana Republic thinking.

    People do not realize Abdulmutallab may have thought he was part of Al Queda. Al Queda never thought he was in their ranks. He was played like many junior Jihadist will be. Lets just make sure we are not the ones being played thinking our Military is some Super Hero organization. Heros yes. NCIS TV no.

    And here is my original comment that some here did not like, but I stick with still:
    71% say“should be investigated by military authorities as a terrorist act.”

    Not the Militaries job in fact very unconstitutional. Wow I guess we no longer trust this government. This poll result I find to be amazing and disturbing.

    Sanmon (319c0c)

  30. In part, I think the poll does indicate the public trusts the military to handle terrorism far more than they trust the government.

    DRJ (84a0c3)

  31. He was sent by Al Shehri of AQ in AP, who was an original Aq captured in Afghanistan and sent to Gitmo. Besides AQ uses the regional groups like GSCF
    Gamaa Islamiya, et al as regional franchises. The Military doesn’t enter into it, the CIA should but it’s teeth have been pulled

    bishop (cd6b99)

  32. “We could have gotten the information Abdulmutallab had, which is minimal.”

    Sanmon – You know this how?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  33. In part, I think the poll does indicate the public trusts the military to handle terrorism far more than they trust the government.
    Comment by DRJ — 1/1/2010

    And there lies a major problem because the military takes it orders from the Government.

    Sanmon (319c0c)

  34. Sanmon – You know this how?
    Comment by daleyrocks

    Because he had very little operational training. Your HVT’s have been with AQ for over 15 years. Abdulmutallab was trained in months according to published reports.

    Sanmon (319c0c)

  35. I think the person here in danger of thinking life is like TV is Sanmon.
    There are very clear lines of demarcation between civilian criminal prosecutions, and prosecutions handled by Military Tribunals, but it is the civilian ACLU types that keep trying to blur the lines and move the goalposts, actions that ultimately endanger the security of all citizens of the Republic.
    Ultimately, if the civilian LE side of the government keeps encroaching on the Military/National Security side, the grunts in the line will just stop taking prisoners and/or putting themselves in the line-of-fire – just call in a Predator, and let the graves-registration guys sort it out.

    “…according to published reports.”

    Well, there you go!
    Everything in a published report is certified to be accurate, truthful, complete, and without bias.
    That’s why the Pulitzer Cmte gave that prize to Duranty.

    AD - RtR/OS! (cd4296)

  36. AD – RtR/OS!

    Thanks for your typical left wing pivot. Case law under the Bush Administration would be Richard Reid, remember the shoe bomber? Look it up and give a legal summary of reasons he was not tried in a Military Tribunal. You want to be insulting, go ahead and get your information transported to you through your tin foil brainless hat.

    If you stay clueless as you have proven to be I am sure Darwin will appreciate your contribution to extinction. Talking tough with lame points only proves when the real attack comes you will be shot while you stand in line with the fools looking for government hand outs of food and water.

    Understand fool, you use the military only when there is no other option. Not to bolster the ego of lame intellectual punk like you. Is that clear. STOP USING THE MILITARY BECAUSE YOU HAVE A SMALL DICK. It gets people killed that know what HONOR is.

    Sanmon (319c0c)

  37. Which just goes to prove that you know absolutely nothing of which you opine about, Sonny!

    AD - RtR/OS! (685f75)


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