Proud Jihadists Speak Out

At military commission sessions taking place this week in Guantanamo, some of the most powerful terrorists on earth have been speaking their minds. It’s good to note from the outset that while some of these men have been accused by much of the world of having been subjected to torture, primarily waterboarding while in CIA custody, all have ample opportunity to recant previous confessions.

We have seen this at the Guantanamo proceedings. Muhammad al Qahtani, ISN # 063, the previously self-confessed 20th hijacker, recanted his admissions of guilt and complicity with the 9/11 attack at his hearing.

However, those men now in the docket stand firm on admission – indeed pride – in their nefarious accomplishments.

Yesterday Ramzi Binalshibh made the chilling statement: “I want to send my greetings to Osama Bin Laden and reaffirm my allegiance. I hope the Jihad will continue and strike the heart of America with all kinds of weapons of mass destruction.”

It was certainly an “extraordinary day” at Guantanamo” that a BBC reporter recounted.

When he was not assured of the automaticity of the death penalty, KSM led the five detainees in withdrawing – at least for the moment – his guilty plea.

The BBC reporter, Jonathan Beale, interpreted the presence for the first time of some 9/11 families as a way that the Bush administration is “blackmailing” the upcoming Obama presidency. His read appears a bit nonsensical. More to the point is that beginning January 20, 2009, Obama will own Guantanamo along with the convoluted problems it poses.

Perhaps for the first time, he and his team are faced with situational realities that were easily brushed aside during the campaign. How he chooses to deal with these issues will define in a large part his presidency.

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