November 18, 2010 -- Congressman Trent Franks (AZ-02), a Member of the House Judiciary Committee and the Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties, today issued the following statement in response to the Ghailani verdict:
"Despite Attorney General Holder's promises that "these cases have to be won" and that "failure is not an option," yesterday's ruling will be remembered as one of the most blatant miscarriages of justice in the history of our federal criminal court system. I cannot imagine a greater affront to the families of the victims who have waited so long for justice on behalf of their loved ones, nor can I imagine a more dangerous signal that was sent to our enemies, than to see a man who had already admitted to the 1998 African Embassy bombings, and who continued to work as an Al Qaeda operative and even a Bin Laden bodyguard until as late as 2004, acquitted of more than 280 criminal charges due to procedural protections in the civil court that precluded critical evidence from being admitted.
"The Obama Administration has now fundamentally characterized itself with the word "failure." In this case, failure comes with the unspeakably high cost of the shock, pain, and grief to the families of the 224 innocent people who were murdered and the more than 4,000 people who were wounded in these horrific terrorist attacks, who were all just told by a federal court that the man who irrefutably helped create the bombs that maimed and slaughtered their innocent loved ones is not guilty of a single count of murder.
"If this insane policy of appeasing terrorists and granting them American Constitutional rights to be tried as quasi American citizens continues, the cost of this failure will pale in comparison to the cost of the failure that will undoubtedly yet occur as a result of this ruling. Terrorists now have incontrovertible evidence that they can exploit the American justice system and they will use this knowledge to train new terrorist recruits and manipulate their cases if and when they are caught.
"Yesterday's ruling was a demonstration of why military tribunals were created and why they are so important. Military tribunals have long been established for those accused of war crimes. By definition, these tribunals are set up to deal with the unique challenges dealing with those who commit, in cases such as this, acts of terror against innocent civilians. These types of tribunals have been used before with great success. For instance, during WWII a group of Nazis were charged with attempting to terrorize citizens within the United States, in an effort to dissuade them from entering the war. They were captured and tried in a military tribunal in less than a month.
"President Bush once said, 'We must not let foreign enemies use the forums of liberty to destroy liberty itself.' Because of the current Administration's blind commitment to a radically misguided and dangerous philosophy, President Obama is now responsible for one of the greatest cracks in the foundation of liberty I have witnessed in my lifetime. Our children and grandchildren may be made to pay a terrible price as a result.
"Unfortunately, the failure of the Ghailani verdict is just the beginning. In light of this disastrous ruling-- the obvious consequence of the Administration's own disastrous terror trial policy-- I call on Eric Holder to either repudiate the Administration's policy on terror trials, or resign immediately."
Personally, I think that he should have resigned, when he dropped the case against the Black Panthers that intimidated voters back in 2008.
Unfortunately, unless Obama tries someone like KSM that gets acquitted, I don't see this escalating to the point where Holder has to resign, and I think that the chance of that happening is nil. Obama won't chance such an embarrassment so close to the 2012 elections.