Thursday, August 16, 2007

Padilla guilty, Bush and cronies still at large

By Michael J.W. Stickings

A Florida jury has found Jose Padilla guilty, as CNN puts it, of "conspiracy to support Islamic terrorism overseas," a charge suitably vague to ensure conviction. Two co-defendents were also found guilty. But here's the kicker. Padilla has been in custody since 2002. And yet:

Padilla was originally arrested on accusations that he planned to set off radioactive "dirty bombs" in the United States. Thursday's convictions are not related to those accusations, and prosecutors did not present the "dirty bomb" plot to the jury.

Just as prosecutors did not present the dirty bomb plot to the jury, neither were jurors told that Padilla was held in a Navy brig for 3½ years without charges before his indictment in the Miami case.

Is Padilla a great guy? No, maybe not. Did he deserve all this? No, certainly not. This trial, but even more his treatment as an "enemy combatant," was a sham, and a despicable one at that.


The mouth-frothing haters of habeas corpus over on the far right are loving this, of course. Check out Malkin, for example, if you must.

There will be a lot of reaction to this story throughout the day. You can find some right now over at Memeorandum, but keep checking back there for more. And allow me to recommend a response by my friend Shaun Mullen over at Kiko's House.

This is truly America's shame.


Update: See all the latest at Memeorandum. A lot of good posts, but here are four I want to single out: "Michelle Malkin Hates Our Freedoms" by Barbara O'Brien (best line: "Malkin is having an orgasm of celebratory righteousness"); "Padilla reactions" by Mark Gisleson; "Padilla Round-Up" by John Cole; and "The menticide of Jose Padilla" (great title) by Lindsay Beyerstein.

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