In the March 20, 2007 edition of the Washington Post, Anne Applebaum, a member of the Post’s editorial board, goes to great lengths to portray the reported confessions of the most notorious terrorist in captivity, Khalid Sheik Mohammed, as a conviction of the United States Military and the Bush Administration.
Admittedly, KSM’s claims of direct responsibility as the chief military operative for al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden to 30 terrorist plots going back nearly 15 years seems a little much to believe even for KSM. Perhaps he was doing a terrorist’s version of resume padding, or maybe hoping to take the pressure off the global search for other most-wanteds that are still awaiting their hearing or not yet captured. Whatever the reason, for the families of the nearly 3,000 victims of September 11, the USS Cole attack and the embassy bombings, this at least brings a degree of closure to perverted tragedies that can never be reconciled.
In addition to being the operations mastermind for 9/11, KSM took credit for the beheading of Daniel Pearl, attempts on the life of President Clinton — not to mention Pope John Paul II — and virtually every terrorist strike and plot since the first World Trade Center bombing in 1993.
Whether this confession is true or just remarkably boastful, no one — not even the Post and Applebaum — suggests that KSM is anything but a bad guy of epic proportion and it’s good he’s off the street.
However, rather than note with appreciation the confession, the Post resurrects the “torture” issue. Rather than ponder the significance of not only this confession before a Guantanamo Bay military tribunal hearing, nor the recent confession by Waleed Mohammed bin Attash, long suspected as the point man for the plotting of the USS Cole attack, the Post rushes to the defense of the terrorists arguing that our military at Gitmo and the Bush Administration are the real criminals.
Their evidence in support of this contention is non-existent. In spite of volumes of testimony, congressional on-site investigations, and evidence to the contrary, the Post states boldly that “the circumstances of Mohammed’s detention have been unacceptable,” and in a second separate editorial taunts Congress with “What’s stopping the Democrats in Congress from investigating?”
As evidence that it is the U.S. and our interrogators at Guantanamo Bay who have really committed the egregious offenses, the Post and Applebaum note that the all-knowing and objective world media “greeted these confessions with skepticism and indifference.”
Ah, the Court of Global Media Opinion!
Then, apparently having concluded that those really guilty of criminal activity at Guantanamo Bay are indeed the Americans, the Post concludes “This is concrete proof, as if more were needed, that it is not merely immoral to operate outside the rule of law; it is also ineffective and in fact profoundly counterproductive.” (emphasis added)
“Outside the rule of law”? Exactly who attacked whom on 9/11?
Once again, the New World Order crowd that loves to blame America, accept any foreign criticism as fact, and jump to the defense of Islamic terrorists rights — while rushing to judgment against our own American troops — has stepped over the line.
This “America is always wrong” leftist mantra is baseless and highly counterproductive, especially as we are still very much engaged in a war against global terrorism. Frankly, how the confessions were extracted from KSM and bin Attash are secondary. Our military, almost without exception, has followed the rules, and undoubtedly valuable intelligence was gathered in the process. At the very least, we should be pleased that they are both in our control and out of operation.
The Post, however, seems to think that terrorists ought to have a room at the Ritz and a reservation at the spa.
We have the most open government in the history of the world. America — not radical Islam — is the Gold Standard for the Rule of Law. And, it is America — with no close second place — that has defended and delivered freedom to countless millions on this planet, including 45 million in Afghanistan and Iraq.
No we are not perfect, but we recognize and deal with our mistakes openly and according to the Rule of Law. Both America and the world are better for it.