NOVEMBER 27, 2006
The former U.S. Attorney General who in the 1990s rejected an FBI plan to capture Osama bin Laden and refused to try the World Trade Center bombers as terrorists is legally challenging a new system that is tougher on terrorists.
Best known for ordering a Waco, Texas farmhouse raid that killed dozens of innocent children, Clinton Attorney General Janet Reno is opposed to a military commission law that, not only allows the CIA to use tough interrogation techniques on terrorist detainees, but also allows the government to try them outside the criminal court system.
After years of silence on the issue of terrorist detainees, Reno finally spoke out by filing court papers opposing the Justice Department’s decision to bring a known al-Qaida terrorist, Ali Saleh Kahlah al-Marri, before a military commission rather than a regular criminal court.
Reno’s soft spot for terrorists is not surprising considering that she and her boss weren’t exactly known for being tough on them, despite several vicious attacks on Americans during their tenure. They insisted on trying the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, which killed six Americans and injured more than 1,000, as a crime and not terrorism because they weren’t convinced it was a terrorist act.
In 1998 Reno killed an FBI plan to capture bin Laden because she thought it was “too dangerous.” The plan was to attack a compound in Kandahar Afghanistan, where the al-Qaida leader was hiding, but Reno halted the mission because it was risky.
A few years later al-Qaida bombed the USS Cole in Yemen and 17 United States sailors were killed in the blast. Reno prohibited any retaliation to this vicious terrorist attack, arguing that it would violate international law.
Now the former Attorney General thinks America is too tough on terrorists.
Fausta’s blog sarcastically writes – referring to Waco–that Reno’s court challenge suggests a more humane alternative – that terrorists be incarcerated in old Texas farm houses until they can be surrounded by the FBI with the terrorists being burned alive on national television.
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