Shoe bomber’s rights
Remember Richard Reid, the shoe bomber?
Jules rembers him, particularly this part:
The passengers on American Airlines Flight 63 had finished a quiet lunch and were settling in for the long Atlantic flight faced with nothing more exciting than a movie when a flight attendant cried out for help yesterday.
French TV journalist Thierry Dugeon, 36, was 10 rows behind the fracas in coach.
“Suddenly, I heard a female voice, `I need some help! I need some help!’ ” Dugeon said.
Instinctively, he ran up the narrow aisle to join the group of passengers in a desperate struggle with a man believed to have a bomb.
“It’s three months after September 11th. Of course the first thing you think is something like terrorism,” Dugeon said. “Ten rows in front of me it looked like a fight. I joined the fight . . . It’s pure instinct. It goes so fast. It was my ass as well as the others. You hear a stewardess screaming on an airplane, what do you do? You fight!”
Dugeon was one of 185 passengers aboard the Miami-bound Boeing 767 that landed safely, under fighter jet escort, at Logan International Airport. He spoke with the Herald after being questioned by police and before boarding another plane for Florida.
Dugeon described the melee that lasted long minutes. “Everybody was trying to hold whatever part of the body he could. He was a powerful man. You could feel him resisting,” he said.
The fight took place in a crowded, narrow economy class aisle. Shortly after a woman left her seat, the culprit by the window of Row 29 lit a match, drawing a reprimand from a flight attendant. Minutes later she caught him trying to light the tongue of his black, suede high-topped basketball shoe. When she tried to take the matches away, he bit her on the hand, other passengers said.
“The nearest passengers saw it and grabbed him and tried to put him in his seat, put him under control . . . He was struggling. He was real powerful. But we were like five or six,” Dugeon said.
The struggle, he said, was a blur as passengers tried to subdue the 6-foot-4 suspected terrorist in his seat. They finally had him immobilized.
“After that, we tied him up with everything we had,” Dugeon said. Passengers gave up their belts, strapped a seatbelt around the man, and someone else produced several plastic zip-ties, anything they could get to restrain the unruly man.
A member of the flight crew threatened to blast the man with a fire extinguisher if he moved.
Two doctors on board the Paris-to-Miami flight appeared with syringes and administered sedatives while a flight attendant began questioning him. Passengers rifled his pockets.
After that Reid ended up in maximum security prison in Colorado.
Well, a jihadi’s work is never done, so he sued the government. Deborah Burlingame, sister of Charles F. “Chic” Burlingame III, the pilot of American Airlines Flight 77, which was crashed into the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001, writes in the WSJ that
Reid’s own SAMs on correspondence had been tightened in 2006 after the shocking discovery that three of the 1993 World Trade Center bombers at ADX, not subject to security directives, had sent 90 letters to overseas terrorist networks, including those associated with the Madrid train bombing. The letters, exhorting jihad and praising Osama bin Laden as “my hero of this generation,” were printed in Arabic newspapers and brandished like trophies to recruit new members.
So Reid sued for freedom of religion and went on hunger strike, and voila!
On July 6, Justice Department lawyers informed the court that Reid will be given a “new placement” in a “post-SAMs setting.” Whether that entails stepped down security in a different unit or transfer to a less secure facility, the Bureau of Prisons won’t say, and Justice refuses to comment.
Mr. Obama likes to observe that “no one has escaped from supermax,” but if Reid is moved from ADX Florence, he will be the first convicted terrorist to use the First Amendment to sue his way out.
And why escape when you can play the system? When you know that your “rights” supersede national security and common sense?
Andrew McCarthy, who prosecuted Blind Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman and others involved in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing (an immense task that took nearly a year’s work of preparation and cost millions of dollars), points out that
to have any chance of securely detaining terrorists in civilian prisons, the SAMs ["special administrative measures"] need to be imposed and aggressively enforced.
Yet, even as Holder is making the “securely detaining” argument out of one side of his mouth, he’s abandoning the SAMs out of the other. And all the while, Obama is pushing to close Gitmo and bring scores of these trained terrorists into the civilian prison system. It’s madness.
McCarthy also has an article on Mamdouh Mahmud Salim, who tried to kidnap his American lawyers to escape from prison
The effort was foiled, but not before Salim jammed a razor-sharpened comb, fashioned and concealed in his high-security cell, several inches through the eye and into the brain of Louis Pepe, a 42-year-old Bureau of Prisons guard. Officer Pepe survived, barely, but was left maimed and impaired.
For his efforts, Salim was dropped from the Africa embassy-bombing trial:
He later pleaded guilty to the assault on Officer Pepe, a conviction Holder fails to mention in his list of DOJ’s counterterrorism successes. Perhaps that’s because Judge Deborah Batts, the Clinton appointee assigned to the case, declined to sentence Salim to life imprisonment. Judge Batts was unmoved by the government’s contention that a terrorist’s maiming of a prison guard might possibly have had something to do with terrorism. It didn’t seem to matter that the attempted murder arose out of a plot designed to facilitate an al-Qaeda escape, or that Salim, who pled guilty to conspiracy, had admitted to planning the attack with another al-Qaeda member. Thus, the thoughtful jurist refused to apply the sentencing guideline that governs “federal crimes of terrorism.” Though Batts did impose a term of 32 years, a federal appellate court finally reversed her absurd ruling last year, sending the case back to her court.
The Obama administration is telegraphing a message to the jihadists.
We shall soon hear their response.
Tags: Fausta's blog