Even the Washington Post, that bastion of conservatism, agrees that the Obama administration was foolish in reading the underwear bomber his rights before completely interrogating him.
UMAR FAROUK Abdulmutallab was nabbed in Detroit on board Northwest Flight 253 after trying unsuccessfully to ignite explosives sewn into his underwear. The Obama administration had three options: It could charge him in federal court. It could detain him as an enemy belligerent. Or it could hold him for prolonged questioning and later indict him, ensuring that nothing Mr. Abdulmutallab said during questioning was used against him in court.
It is now clear that the administration did not give serious thought to anything but Door No. 1. This was myopic, irresponsible and potentially dangerous.
Whether to charge terrorism suspects or hold and interrogate them is a judgment call. We originally supported the administration’s decision in the Abdulmutallab case, assuming that it had been made after due consideration. But the decision to try Mr. Abdulmutallab turns out to have resulted not from a deliberative process but as a knee-jerk default to a crime-and-punishment model.
I mean I understand why they initially sided with the Obama administration’s choice, Obama is never wrong, AND he was being criticized by Dick Cheney, so that made Obama even more right in his decision!
This is nuts. Even if you wanted ultimately to try him as an ordinary criminal, he could have been detained in military custody — and thus subject to military interrogation — without prejudicing his ultimate disposition. After all, every Guantanamo detainee was first treated as an enemy combatant and presumably interrogated. But some (most notoriously Khalid Sheik Mohammed) are going to civilian trial. That determination can be made later.