Ship bombing suspect in a Guantanamo Bay military courtroom Wednesday
A U.S. sailor salutes the American flag at Guantanamo Bay Navy Base
November 7th, 2011
06:35 PM ET

Ship bombing suspect in a Guantanamo Bay military courtroom Wednesday

By Senior National Security Producer Charley Keyes

A terror suspect will emerge from the shadows after nine years of detention this week when he’s led into a military courtroom at the U.S. Naval Base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri’s was captured in 2002 and has remained virtually invisible since then, detained first overseas in secret facilities and then at Guantanamo.

The United States claims he is the brains behind the 2000 bombing of the U.S.S. Cole, which killed 17 U.S. Navy sailors, wounded dozens more and left the warship crippled in the harbor of Aden, Yemen.

The officer in charge of the ship at the time, Commander Kirk Lippold, U.S. Navy (Ret.), says this court appearance is long overdue. “The crew and families have been patient for 11 years,” Lippold told CNN Monday. “It is time for justice to be served.”

The arraignment Wednesday morning is expected to last only an hour or so, with al-Nashiri’s formal military trial still months away. But this potentially could be the first death penalty case in the military commission system if he is found guilty.

And the allegations of water boarding and other torture will turn the international spotlight back to Guantanamo and to how the U.S. deals with its most notorious suspects.

The case is seen as a test run for the future trials of Guantanamo’s most notorious detainees, those accused of planning the 9/11 terror attacks.

Al Nashiri’s military and civilian defense lawyers have said the torture – including repeated water boarding, intimidations by power drills and threats to his family - make a fair trial impossible.

"By torturing Mr. al-Nashiri and subjecting him to cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment, the United States has forfeited its right to try him and certainly to kill him," a defense brief said. "Through the infliction of physical and psychological abuse, the government has essentially already killed the man it seized almost 10 years ago."

And just in recent weeks defense and prosecution lawyers have been sparring, with motions and counter motions, over whether al-Nashiri would be released even if he is acquitted - and whether that should be disclosed to the military officers who will service as jurors in his trial.

“Under the circumstances of this case, where it has been publically acknowledged that Mr. al Nashiri was tortured by the U.S. government, a trial without any real possibility of reprieve is yet another form of torture,” his lawyers said in a motion last month.

The colonel acting as judge in the case has not ruled on that, but the prosecution has argued that release of al-Nashiri goes beyond the authority of the Military Commission.

The suspect faces additional charges related to an attempted attack on the USS The Sullivans in Yemen in January 2000 and an attack on a French tanker in 2002 that resulted in the death of one crew member. The two attacks on U.S. Navy vessels predate the federal Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) against terrorists passed by Congress in the days after the 9/11 attacks.

Some 30 journalists have already been flown to Guantanamo by the military to observe the trial, either in the courtroom or via a television feed to a offices set up for reporters in a nearby abandoned hanger. And for the first time journalists– another 20 or so– will be able to watch the proceedings from the United States, from an auditorium at Fort Meade between Washington, D.C. and Baltimore. Fort Meade is headquarters to the super-secret intelligence organization, the National Security Agency.

And survivors of the USS Cole attack and families of the victims will be provided a closed circuit feed in Norfolk, Virginia. No photographs or recordings are allowed either in Guantanamo or in the remote locations in the United States. All the transmissions are controlled by the military and will have a 40-second delay and kill switch should military censors decide that classified information has been divulged and should be protected.

The al-Nashiri defense team has asked the Military Commission to pay four outside experts, to rule on the acquital and release questioin and to give their client privacy in correspondence with his lawyers. “We are hopeful on Wendesay the court will hear and decide various outstanding issues,” Indianapolis lawyer Richard Kammen told CNN. He is a nationally recognized expert on death penalty cases. He admits that it hard to predict outcomes in the military commissions. “This is a the fuirst hearing in essentially what is a made up system,” Kammen said “They are making this up as they go along.”

Also travelling to Guantanamo, in addition to journalists, lawyers, legal support staff, and representaties of the USS Cole families are representatives of public action groups. Among the observers will be Human Rights First’s Melina Milazzo. She like other critics of the military commissions says terrorists like al Nashiri should be tried in federael courts. This is a risky case. Whativer happens it will be attacked and challenged on a variety of grounds,” Milazzo told CNN. “The al-Nashiri case will highlight a lot of what is wrong with the military commission system.”

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Filed under: Gitmo • Terrorism • Yemen
soundoff (55 Responses)
  1. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc,Int'l Intst'r

    If you are infected and somehow survive and then get reinfected with the tetanus group of bacteria poisons they often find the patient (untreated )in a twisted tortured body state of paralysed death. They report that the dogs got him or her.
    Then people wander around trying to solve the murder as if some crime group that uses dog games and dogs themselves killed the person. but in the final end it was the litterally hoof and mouth disease or mad dog disease. they would be searching to see of a giant had mangled them to death or some kids gang beat them to a pulp maybe but there were no bruises left by the time their body was found. sometimes it means the army dogs too, when they say that.
    You would look like they were going to put you in suitcase but changed their mind about finishing the job that way.
    Giant crime harrassment around centers of that kind of criminal medical mass neglect are to arouse diversionary suspicion blame.
    Regarding Lactose intollerance problems concerning sabotaged milk, which isn't really about lactose itself if that is in fact a milk sugar. Add a gas x tablet to your glass of milk – tall glass, by shaving the tablet in it with a paring knife or steak knife and that should clear any gastric pain or diarhhea affects and bloatiness from milk because everyone needs to drink milk or equivalent substitue. i just tried two glasses with those tablets and i will verify the test later.i knew there was a neutralizer tablet somehow as i had recommended for certain water condition problems. there are lactose tablets but i beleive just the regular rolaids or gas x and such works. maybe a ranitidine which is more economical would work as well. though i regret harm to military defence vets etc. you allowed me and engaged from the different other sides of rule in extreme torture of various degrees forcing me to fight eveyone and i lost many who weren't interested in playing your dirty game to ruin me or sabotage themselves too in the process. and you were all the terrorist extortion game planners and takers. you had no legal or human rights or racial respect reason for obstructing me and stealing my identity in repeated numerous waves of ignorant lies and publicity exploits. the way i managed to get a main site host block for defending myself and others saved what remained of my strength to recover and round all of you up somehow. with me though to be accurate you would have to report that the rusty construction nail got me that was sticking out of the doorway frame.i am pretty sure the dogs didn't want to get. that one also wanted me on the cross all the time to build more new church dynasties to their satanist fiend worship bosses. also the one that likes building a lot of museums and libraries of presidents to honor ? and hospitals and new laboratories and more medical office centers, plus the big industry nail you to the dirt buiders too, and bigger heavier city hall centers that is the door you wanted me to go through to be saved. it was the rusty nail that gave the dogs mad dog disease as well.
    The tablet of gas x in the milk seems to settle stomach upseting effects in the milk now that wasn't in it and it is also in yogurt and chocolate milk but it may need two tablets. i drank almost a litre for the test with one tablet in each glass. i will try a gas x tablet and a ranitidine tablet and see if that perfects it into a gentle calcium food supply. but with ranitidine you are supposed to only take one tablet or two a day. so that has to be weighed out for its use. and more importantly is the dairy cattle infected with tetanus and sickening our natural milk supply and us? we may not be getting the tetanus infection in the milk but the damages of it so the dairy cow can't produce a acid free milk. tetanus would make the dairy cow produce too much digestive acid types. it itself would have cancer indicative looking acid reflux disease that becomes bleeding digestive organ cancer disease (?) Sort of re-examine forensic evidence. There is no benefit in using the gas x because in fact they did do what i first suspect and put maillox laxative liquid which tastes like chalky milk in the milk to stretch the supply. now i have to search out what maillox is made or milk of magnesia, the latter maybe the more accurate suspect mix additive. i can't remember now if those are two different laxative liquids you can buy without a prescription or if they are one using the two titles. milk may have some other laxative in it or there is too much veterinarian laxative given to the cattle, dairy, but the cheese and the icecream and whip cream is protected, maybe the heavy cream too, which i am testing soon and which if clear can be diluted with water for a milk product. theresa noelle younan ymma-iii younan research management I-PIC interpole galactica. i reported these problems more than once to agriculture canada's inspection department and to the grocery store chain and doctors etc. but to no avail.

    November 9, 2011 at 4:40 pm | Reply
    • rick

      ?

      November 9, 2011 at 5:44 pm | Reply
  2. masail

    It is said that no one truly knows a nation until one has been inside its jails. A nation should not be judged by how it treats its highest citizens, but its lowest ones.”
    ― Nelson Mandela

    November 9, 2011 at 2:53 pm | Reply
  3. Sonny

    Why bother to take him to court or put him in jail? it is such a waste of money and time. Shoot thise psycho scumbag and feed his body to liions and alligators in the zoo.

    November 9, 2011 at 10:29 am | Reply
    • Dman

      Lions wont eat that crap##

      November 9, 2011 at 1:04 pm | Reply
  4. RevLA

    Cover the.bastard in pig's blood and slow roast him until he's well done.

    November 8, 2011 at 11:17 pm | Reply
  5. Luke Weyland

    USS Cole bombing Yemen, Somalia or elsewhere = terrorism
    USS Cole being attacked ioutside the United States = heroism
    US warplanes, drones, naval vessels, tanks, troops must return to USA, and USA there to stay.

    November 8, 2011 at 9:54 pm | Reply
    • Ethernet

      Non sequitor

      November 9, 2011 at 8:03 am | Reply
  6. zcaveman

    Y can't we use simple justice, eye for an eye?

    November 8, 2011 at 9:03 pm | Reply
    • Tom

      Umm because if we did eye for an eye, there would be a crapload of dead Americans...

      November 9, 2011 at 11:14 am | Reply
  7. jersey3038

    The bombing of the U.S.S. Cole although a horrible loss and crime has ultimately saved american lives. If you don't agree then just try to do the same thing again. I can't think of a safer place to serve. What country would be dumb enough to test one of our ships?? U.S. Navy rules.

    November 8, 2011 at 7:45 pm | Reply
    • Navygirl

      I agree. One of my good friends had just left Pearl Harbor, HI for a tour on the USS Cole a few months before the attack. Once the attack happend it took almost a week maybe longer can't really remember how long it was to hear from her, we didnt know whether she was alive or dead. She suffered so much, but she was alive. She had bruises and cuts all over her body; lost hearing in one of her ears and a large chunk of her cheek was missing. I'm wondering why it took all these years to finally begin to bring her and her shipmates some justice?

      November 9, 2011 at 1:16 pm | Reply
  8. Unruly Mob

    If they are more concerned about international opinion than American justice, we should give the little bloodthirsty scumbag some Libyan style justice. Drag him through the streets, then give em a pop. That should make them all happy.

    November 8, 2011 at 3:58 pm | Reply
  9. Da Man

    They should never be prosecuted, they should be let free, they should never be charged, they should never even be investigated–just like the people who attacked the USS Liberty.

    BTW, the civilian courts have a much higher conviction rate than do military tribunals.

    November 8, 2011 at 3:36 pm | Reply
    • yo wrong sir

      cival courts would never handle this case or ANY case that involves a BOMB/BOMBING/TERRORISM!!! that goes straight to the SUPREME COURT WHICH IS NOOOOT A "CIVAL COURT"... AND IF IT DIDNT GO TO THE SUPREME COURT IT WOULD GO TO THE MILITARY TRIBUNAL!! AND AFTER THAT HE should be SHOT IN THE HEAD via FIRING SQUAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! WITH M60 MACHINE GUNS!!

      November 8, 2011 at 8:24 pm | Reply
  10. Pig Profit

    awwww we gave him a degrading treatment, poor terrorist.

    November 8, 2011 at 1:37 pm | Reply
    • dieshard

      He is guilty punishment DEATH by HANGING!! End this crap now, he is guilty as charged "Hang him HIGH and hang him LONG: Let his body rot !!!

      November 8, 2011 at 2:43 pm | Reply
      • yo wrong sir

        8TH AMENDMENT STATES THAT THERE SHALL BE NO CRUEL OR UNUSUAL PUNNISHMENT...HANCE...HANGING IS NO LONGER USED...CUZ IT TAKES UP TO 15 MINUTES FOR THEM TO DIE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        November 8, 2011 at 8:40 pm |
      • uh huh

        It's not cruel and unusual if it's done right.

        November 9, 2011 at 6:26 am |
  11. Dave

    They should never have rights in the US in a US court of law. The military tribunals is the way to go. it is a different time and calls for different rules. These people are not loyal to a country, they are loayl to a cause and a psuedo-religion.
    Get all the information we can from them for as long as it takes. If that means "torture", so be it.

    November 8, 2011 at 1:21 pm | Reply
  12. Rider83

    As soon as we are done with him then we can take the time to address the attack and murder of American sailors by the terrorist country of Israel!! Israel is the only country to attack America and get away with it, in fact it is the only act of war on America that has never been investigated by congress! Israel and the people of the jewish religion have done more to harm America and the American people then all the Arab countries put together! Israel, our so called close ally, spies on us, lies to us, uses us, steals from us, and has attacked us yet the whores in congress ignore everything Israel does! In fact congress puts Israel's needs before America's even in a time of war which makes them traitors!!!! Keep in mind that jewish is a religion and that is all it is, you CANNOT be born jewish or be part jewish any more than you can be born luthern or catholic or be part of either religion! Question: Are people of the jewish religion living in America loyal to America or to Israel? You CANNOT be loyal to both!!

    November 8, 2011 at 11:46 am | Reply
    • Guy K.

      People like you make me want to vomit. It's Israel's fault, Known Terrorist caught in the act have Rights ! What about the rights of the sailors who were murdered ! What about the hundreds of the innocent people in Israel who were murdered in the 80 & 90's by terrorist bombers were were there rights ?
      Why don't you hang out with your pot smoking free sex, if it feels good do it in the road, Occupy freaks, and let the military do what it dose best. Protect idiots like you from harm. We ought to kill every one in Git mo and get it over with.

      November 8, 2011 at 12:04 pm | Reply
      • yo wrong sir

        THAT WOULDD BE GENOCIDE IF YOU KILLED OF AN ENTIRE RACE OF PEOPLE AND YOU WOULD BE WORSE THAN HITLER CUZ HE NEVER FINNISHED THROUGH WITH IT

        November 8, 2011 at 8:33 pm |
    • Carlos

      Unfortunately Ryder83 is correct

      November 8, 2011 at 12:23 pm | Reply
      • yo wrong sir

        HELL NO HE AINT SIR!!

        November 8, 2011 at 8:34 pm |
    • mr magoo

      funny, people said the same things about catholics regarding their loyalty to the pope. It was a huge issue when Kennedy ran for president. Read a book and try to lay off the bong.

      November 8, 2011 at 12:35 pm | Reply
    • C.Brown

      Wow someone hasn't taken there crazy pills this morning.

      November 8, 2011 at 1:11 pm | Reply
    • Tufu

      Rider83, You are on to something, here. Yes, Israel is a pampered, spolied rotten child.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:08 pm | Reply
    • Unruly Mob

      Strange that you would single out Israel. If you changed the topic of your rant to Pakistan, or China, or any other nation that serves it's own interests ahead of our own, it would read the same. But since you have your anti-semitic blinders on , that probably had not ocurred to you. What people have been more oppressed that the Jews and I don't hear them whining about it. But here you are whining about one of our nations strongest and most reliable allies, warts and all. Wow! Do you get your "news" from Al Jazeera?

      November 8, 2011 at 4:08 pm | Reply
    • rick

      uss liberty was a tragiic accident. war is hell and friendly fire unfortunately occurs. your out of context ravings are obviously based on an irrational anti semitic hatred and comparing the USS Liberty incident to the premeditated attack on the USS Cole is absurd.

      November 8, 2011 at 6:39 pm | Reply
    • yo wrong sir

      YO LAY OFF THE BONG BE-YACH!!!! I KNOW JEWS AND YOU ARENO BETTER THAN HITLER IF YOU THINK THEY ARE EVIL OR CORUPT SO HOW DARE YOU EVEN THINK THAT!! AND YA YOU CAN BE BORN INTO A RELIGION! IF YOUR PARENTS ARE LUTHEREN OR CATHOLIC THAN YOU ARE BORN INTO A LUTHERAN OR A CATHOLIC FAMILY!!! HENCE YOU ARE BORN INTO A RELIGION BUT YOU CAN OPT OUT IF YOU WANT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

      November 8, 2011 at 8:31 pm | Reply
    • dickdeadwood

      I wauz just wondering that myself...what about the attack on the USS Liberty by Isreal in 1967, 34 american sailors murdered twice that many wounded! Why do we we pursure those responsible for the attack on the USS Cole ( with FAR less loss of life) yet sweep the same kind of act on the Liberty under the rug?

      November 9, 2011 at 8:24 am | Reply
      • rick

        because it was an accident Dick deadhead. during an active war. even you should be able to tell he difference between a friendly fire incident during an ongoing war and a premeditated attack such as the attack on the USS Cole, or maybe not, "Dick".

        November 9, 2011 at 11:17 am |
  13. ART

    You know a little arsenic on his free meals would do the trick, why bother with a trial.

    November 8, 2011 at 11:28 am | Reply
  14. Sybaris

    If found guilty he should suffer the fate befitting a crime committed at sea.

    CO: "How did he die?"
    Sailor: "He fell down a ladder"
    CO: "17 times?"
    Sailor: "It was a short fall"

    November 8, 2011 at 11:25 am | Reply
  15. Indy Jim

    Some good legal questions being asked. I don't think you should be able to try someone who if found not guilty for any reason would then not be set free. Otherwise it is just a show.

    November 8, 2011 at 11:20 am | Reply
  16. J.D.

    All these activits are idiots. I've been to GTMO and let me tell ya, those pricks that are incarcerated are treated better than anyone in a state or federal prison here in the U.S. Half of them don't want to leave! Best medical and dental they have ever had! Not to mention three squares a day. Average detainee has gained fifteen pounds since they have been at GTMO. As a Gunny in the Marines once told me, he had a simple solution to this whole issue. Let them go and then let me at em. Problem solved...

    November 8, 2011 at 10:51 am | Reply
    • the truth

      yes gitmo is a good as abu grave. You know torturing people day and night. Raping the "terrorists". Making them get naked and taking humiliating pictures of them day and night. Pumping horrible music into their cells. Extreme cold or extreme heat.

      I mean if it's so good, why don't we just try them. Simple because we're torturing them. Let's see you get torture and say it's the greatest place on earth.

      November 8, 2011 at 12:56 pm | Reply
      • Unruly Mob

        Rape? Never happened! But if you feel the need to lie in order to bolster your argument, please feel free.

        November 8, 2011 at 4:13 pm |
      • yo wrong sir

        SPOKEN LIKE A TRUE TRUTH SPEAKER!

        November 8, 2011 at 8:36 pm |
    • C.Brown

      J.D. what unit were you in? I doubt you have ever been to GTMO as no one that has ever been stationed their has liked it. I was stationed their prior to 9/11 and was part of RFC Windward, at that time we used Camp X-Ray to hold problematic refugees and even than the place was a dump. GTMO was the worse year of my 8 years in the Corps I would rather go back to Iraq than to Cuba with the Banana Rats, Iguanas, Boas, Mosquito's, Flies, high temperatures, salt flats, beaches covered in rocks (not sand), Vulchurs circling above as we hiked up and down the hills of the fence line, standing post for 24hrs straight with only one other Marine and than doing 24hrs straight as part of the react force or going on an overnight patrol. Yeah Cuba sucked but if this man did what he is being accused of than he is in the right place cause GTMO is hell.

      November 8, 2011 at 1:25 pm | Reply
    • Pharos

      Actually, camp x-ray was the first facility that prisoners were held at. Some abuses did happen there. The prisoners are not held there anymore. You would know that if you were really involved.
      It really bugs me when people pretend to be soldiers.

      November 8, 2011 at 3:10 pm | Reply
    • Unruly Mob

      Those pricks are treated better than many of our servicemen that are deployed.

      November 8, 2011 at 4:10 pm | Reply
  17. Gaddffly

    Did anyone see the news about the Taiwan fishermen that recaptured their boat from pirates? "All six pirates fell into the sea and their fate is unknown" Way to go fishermen !!!

    November 8, 2011 at 10:48 am | Reply
  18. why?

    why do they hate the world trade center, pentagon, and USS Cole so much?

    November 8, 2011 at 10:45 am | Reply
    • why?

      and who are "they"?

      November 8, 2011 at 10:45 am | Reply
    • why?

      good that the families of USS Cole have input into this. hard for them to go to va to see that though.

      November 8, 2011 at 10:49 am | Reply
  19. jACKSON

    A tall tree and a short pice of rope are all that is needed.

    November 8, 2011 at 10:38 am | Reply
  20. Barry G.

    I'm glad he's off the streets.

    November 8, 2011 at 10:22 am | Reply
  21. Torturer

    After he is convicted, we need to slowly torture the sh|t out of him. Bamboo under the finger nails. Put lice on his scalp and balls. Put him next to an open fire pit. Throw acid on his torso. Rub salt in the wound. Mash his big toes with a ball peen hammer. Hit him in the throat with a baseball bat. Put him in a vat of scalding hot water. Stab his knees with a bayonette. Let me see how many more treatments I can think of.

    November 8, 2011 at 8:58 am | Reply
    • SW3 Ortega

      Dont hold back. Tell us what you really think!

      November 8, 2011 at 10:08 am | Reply
    • yo wrong sir

      THAT WOULD FALL UNDR THE PROTECTION OF THE 8TH AMENDMENT: ...NOT INFLICT CRUEL OR UNUSUAL PUNNISHMENT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

      November 8, 2011 at 8:38 pm | Reply
  22. billybob22

    Hello courtroom goodbye reality

    November 8, 2011 at 1:13 am | Reply
    • Barry G.

      Hopecfully he won't be tried in LA.

      They have a bad record of letting the guilty walk.

      November 8, 2011 at 10:24 am | Reply

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