The DOJ has arraigned Osama Bin Laden’s son in law in federal court in New York and, naturally, the right wing media is throwing a hissy fit about it. And Andrew McCarthy is throwing fuel on the paranoid fire and telling ridiculous lies about it as well.
McCarthy admitted that he and fellow prosecutors have amassed a strong conviction record against terrorist suspects, but possible exoneration is not his biggest concern. He said trials in civilian court always trigger intelligence flows that make our nation more vulnerable.
“You have to turn over discovery, meaning all of our intelligence files under the due process rules. You’re also, in effect, rewarding the worst actors,” McCarthy said. “Basically, we’re taking the insane position that if you’re a foreign or even an American enemy combatant, and we happen to catch you in Yemen, we can take you out with a drone strike with no due process, no anything, even if you haven’t actually carried out a terrorist attack yet. But if you hit the jihadist jackpot and manage to get to the United States and kill 3,000 Americans, we’ll bring you into Manhattan and give you the bells-and-whistles civilian trial. That’s a pretty perverse set of incentives to give our enemy.”
Yeah, I’m sure all of the terrorists locked up in the Florence Supermax prison are just thrilled with how they were “rewarded” for their crimes by being tried in civilian court. And it’s simply a lie to claim that you have to turn over everything in discovery in such a case. McCarthy knows damn well about the Classified Information Procedures Act, though when he was a prosecutor in one high profile case he failed to use its procedures to protect information. He now uses that minor release of information that he failed to protect as the example — the only example — of a civilian trial of a terrorist ever resulting in the release of information.
Andrew McCarthy is a fraud selling lies and his own incompetence to a credulous right wing media.