Mayor Mike: NYPD Can Handle the 9/11 Trial

Mike Bloomberg’s as confident as Jerry Nadler that NY can manage a trial of the alleged 9/11 plotters:

I support the Obama Administration’s decision to prosecute 9/11 terrorists here in New York. It is fitting that 9/11 suspects face justice near the World Trade Center site where so many New Yorkers were murdered. We have hosted terrorism trials before, including the trial of Omar Abdel-Rahman, the mastermind of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. When I spoke to Attorney General Holder earlier today, I told him New York City stands ready to assist the federal court in the administration of justice in any way necessary. I have great confidence that the NYPD, with federal authorities, will handle security expertly. The NYPD is the best police department in the world and it has experience dealing with high-profile terrorism suspects and any logistical issues that may come up during the trials.

Why does Joe Lieberman doubt the ability of the NYPD?

32 replies
  1. cinnamonape says:

    I’m puzzled. Why is a tiny enclave completely surrounded by a Communist nation secure while a courthouse and prison complex on the tip of NYC isn’t?

    I wonder sometimes wonder if Lieberman thinks that all our trials against terrorists should be staged in Israel?

  2. Phoenix Woman says:

    Why does Joe Lieberman doubt the ability of the NYPD?

    Because he’s a grandstanding dickwad who is going to get his revenge for never becoming president by spending the rest of his life trying to get us to bomb some Muslims on any pretext or none.

  3. shekissesfrogs says:

    Joe doesn’t want them classified or viewed as humans, or worthy of human rights or justice.
    He’s a control freak, and he wants to control the outcome of the trial and content we are exposed to. Senator Palpatine already knows they’re guilty. Oh, and the fear factor against muslims needs to be kept at pitch level because it helps AIPAC raise money, and protects the Israeli expansion and expulsion project.

  4. bell says:

    who cares what joe lieberman thinks? how often does he need to be discredited, before we move on and pay attention to someone worthy of our attention???

  5. Sara says:

    I suppose the emphasis should be on Bloomberg’s position that NYC is more than capable of dealing with a very high profile trial. They can handle media, crowds, security — all as a matter of course.

    And the point of going to an Article III Court is precisely that — the existing Criminal Justice System can handle this appropriately and easily. You want to knock down the fear factor? — make worry warts like Senator Joe irrelevant? — well then you demonstrate that standard institutions can be used to produce Justice as it is normally understood.

    I see great value in a solid federal trial on another level — It will as it proceeds retell the narrative of what the evidence shows actually happened. We have on one level some of the conspiracy theorists who have used narrow and obscure supposed pieces of evidence to fog up the story, and we have the anti-government crowd who contend serious investigators can’t get anything right. And we have the Joe Lieberman’s with their own agenda. A very well organized professionally conducted trial can knock a lot of these pins away.

  6. staygold212 says:

    I have opposed Joe Lieberman since before he was elected over twenty years ago, and I have financially supported and offered to volunteer for his opponents from Lowell Weicker (a hero of mine, one of the last good and independent Republicans) to Lamont (a Democrat). Some of these responses to Lieberman that mention Israel, AIPAC, him using pretexts to get the US to bomb Muslims, or him ‘having his own agenda’ are disturbing to me. Lieberman is an observant Jew, and I think that the commenters above are reacting to his ethnicity/religion which I fear is somewhat anti-Jewish. I don’t accept it. If these commenters do not think they have issues with Jews, then they should examine themselves more deeply and reach out to Jews and find out why what they are stating (and on a progressive site) can be offensive and unacceptable.

    • bmaz says:

      Lieberman is an ass, and no one has to refrain from so indicating simply because he is Jewish. Perhaps you are the one that should recalibrate your overactive sensitivities.

      • staygold212 says:

        I addressed this in 16, which I carefully worked out while you spent a moment blurting out your reply, Bmaz.

        To paraphrase and somewhat respectfully parody the holiest Jewish prayer: I detest and abhor Joseph Lieberman with all my heart and all my soul.

        I welcome his defeat and I’ve worked for it.

        I have demonstrated in #16 that most of the off-topic references in discussing Lieberman are validly construed as anti-Jewish, at least as a Jew who is aware of some Jewish history.

        The criticisms of Lieberman wanting Military Commissions due to his support of anti-Muslim wars and Israeli aggression are about as ridiculous as saying that Barack Obama’s support of a terror trial means that he’s soft on terrorism because he is an anti-American pro-terrorist because he has East African ancestry where some terrorists live and work.

        These are the issues: should the terrorists be tried in a civilian court or a military court; should the civilian court trial be held in downtown NYC? Joe Lieberman wants a military trial, and he’s saying somewhat justifiably that having a trial in NYC makes NYC more dangerous. I agree with the latter but not the former. What does Lieberman’s advocacy for military trials mean? Lieberman wants a military trial probably because he wants to foment the war on terror. Israel and Muslims are off-topic at best, and offensive at worst.

        Bmaz, you should recalibrate your lack of sensitivity and your tack against sensitivity, and instead of telling people to be less sensitive (to put a lid on it), you should open yourself up to learning and becoming more sensitive. Sensitivity is a good thing. Learning is a good thing. Being open-minded and tolerant is a good thing.

        I am putting my time into this, because this is one of the best places on the web. We need to use knowledge we get from this site, and use respect to unite and improve the world. We need all hands on deck.

        • bmaz says:

          I have demonstrated in #16 that most of the off-topic references in discussing Lieberman are validly construed as anti-Jewish, at least as a Jew who is aware of some Jewish history.

          No, all you have demonstrated is that somebody hell bent on construing them that way can conjure up a rationalization for doing so. You gave yourself away when you went after Sara. Of all people, Sara. It exposed the nonsense.

          • staygold212 says:

            Bmaz, this is how reasoned discussions and arguments work: we discuss ideas and facts, and we don’t personalize them or name call.

            I respect Sara’s posts here a great deal. I’m trying to convince her and get her support. I’m using facts, and so is she. She tried to state that since Joe Lieberman used religion in a political campaign 19 years ago that that is relevant to whether we have military commissions for trials or civil trials, and where the civil trial should be. I’m showing her respect by debating her. I didn’t ‘go after her.’ She strikes me as a thoughtful, knowledgeable person, who is sensitive. I was sharing with her my perceptions about what she said about religion, and that I thought that that association was irrelevant and therefore insensitive behavior/words. Joe Lieberman’s religion today is irrelevant to the discussion, and I thought she would take that in stride, and I’m confident that she is.

            I am not calling anyone here an anti-Semite or saying they are anti-Jewish. I am ‘calling people out’ based on their words/behaviors. I’m trying to raise the discourse. The least of the anti-Jewish statements on this site were from Sara.

            I’m trying to get us united. If I state that I’m feeling uncomfortable in this environment, a place that I cherish, because patterns are emerging on this thread that remind me of anti-Jewish slurs that have happened across countries for centuries, then I think that that is valid. I think that sensitive or open-minded people would weigh that in their minds & hearts and evaluate it if it is correct and maybe try to become more sensitive so that everyone feels safe and welcome. You haven’t looked at any of my examples or logic. You described me as hyperventilating (I’m not), and you described Senator Lieberman as an ‘ass,’ which is name-calling, and you described my thoughts as ‘crap’ and said that I’m making insinuations. I’m trying to be clear and get rid of the possible insinuations.

            Heck! I don’t even know what Joe Lieberman actually said! No one on this thread has quoted him or linked to his quote. The very first comment on this thread was about Mayor Bloomberg stating that NYC and the NYPD could handle the terror trial. Then the last line of the post criticizes Lieberman, whom I assumed said that we shouldn’t have the trial in NYC, that it isn’t safe, and that it should be done my a military tribunal. Those are issues worth debating. But then people added in stuff about religion and Israel, bombings and dehumanization. And then you told me to be less sensitive when I brought those issues up as a way to improve this community.

            I’m not perfectly anti-biased. I also make mistakes. Dakine01 in #19 might have pointed one out. I am not always factually correct. I sometimes sin. I just brought up several examples of anti-Israeli and seeingly crypto-anti-Jewish remarks on this thread that disturbed me. These are things worth debating. Let’s please show some respect for each other and not personalize this, use profanity, or name-call.

            I am trying to prevent ‘a tragedy of the commons’ situation here.

            I’m going to make a concession here, though: I’m agitated about this terror trial coming to NYC. The attacks on the WTC were traumatizing for many of us here in NYC. This news is opening that up for me. I’ve demonstrated, using facts, that terror trials increase danger. I recognize that I need to calm down. I have little control over this situation. The Federal Government can become perfectly effective at counter-terrorism, and also take my recommendation that we move the Federal Trial offshore to a secret location, and the terrorists can still attack again because of or not because of the trial happening here.

            A little respect and sensitivity is in order, please. Thank you.

            • bmaz says:

              If the United States is not strong enough physically, and possessed with the requisite intellectual will to implement its Constitutionally ordained process of justice, in open courts – as opposed to resorting to artificially contrived and restricted show trials in secret forums – then I am not sure what here is worth protecting and admiring. What you are suggesting is antithetical to what the ethos of the American justice system, and America itself, is supposed to stand for, and it is exactly the result that bin Laden and al Qaida prayed for.

              • staygold212 says:

                I think we should have a Federal Trial with everything that they have with federal trials: a judge, lawyers, reporters, witnesses, testimonials, and a jury. I just think the trial should be floating outside New York Harbor in undisclosed locations. Everyone but the accused take a naval vessel from Manhattan to the trial for each day of the proceedings. The accused remain on the Naval ship in a brig with federal court officers guarding them.

                I advocate for military flyovers patrolling the skies, checks of the shipments into the harbor for WMD well outside of the harbor, and I think that the Federal Government should step up and assist the NYPD in town during the trial.

                The Federal Government abysmally failed to protect my city during the last terror trial, the 1998 African Embassy Bombers. That trial was supposed to be on 9/11/01. I think that those defendants must have been pretty heartened when they learned why their trial was being postponed. I would imagine that Al Qaeda leaders and soldiers were pretty happy about the success of the attacks that day, and that their comrades in arms got a message of support from their brothers in violent jihad.

                Bin Laden declared war on the USA in 1998 to the sound of crickets from Congress and the White House. In 2000 they bombed the USS Cole. More crickets from Clinton and Bush. The terrorists stepped it up a notch with the attacks on NYC and DC eleven months later. What they wanted was what they wanted in in the 1980s, bog an empire (first the USSR then the USA) down in Afghanistan. We gave them that and Iraq.

                Holding an open trial on a Naval ship near but away from NYC does recognize that terrorists exist and that they can do very harmful things. So does protecting the city, which they consistently either don’t do or do things to endanger us.

                I remember finally getting out of NYC in late 2001; I went to Atlanta. I was amazed at how normal things were there so soon after the attacks. In NYC it was like a ghost town. People were in shock. I lost work for weeks, and some New Yorkers lost their jobs and businesses completely. Some paid with their lives. In Lower Manhattan where I live and work, Ground Zero was still burning toxic smoke, a two mile long plume of smoke with chemicals and burnt hair going into Brooklyn, population 2.6 million through the rest of 2001. People are still getting sick from it. We were traumatized, some still are.

                Yes, life goes on. Yes, we must keep the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. But this trial needs to be done responsibly, which means that the Feds need to step way up. Great court personnel and the NYPD cannot stop WMD coming in shipping containers or planes flying into buildings. The Feds created and allowed these problems to become crises, and they need to protect us this time. The terror trial of the century starring Osama’s buddy KSM who was waterboarded is an appropriate time to take extraordinary precautions. Democracy requires eternal vigilance and that costs money. We New Yorkers need the rest of America to back us if we are host to this trial.

                I don’t understand your disagreement with me. We both agree on there being an open Federal Trial with all the constitutional proceedings. The only differences I’m drawing in that the court is floating in a secret place, and that my town gets extra security. This is not a time to be skimpy. We are still occupying / protecting Korea, Germany, Japan, and Italy 50 and 60 years after those wars ended. We are talking about at least 40,000 troops overseas in these four places, maybe 100,000, and I’m getting the sense that you think it is fine that NYC continues to be wide open, undefended, so that things can be ‘normal’ and so that you are satisfied that we don’t show the terrorists that they have an effect?

                I have news for you: terrorist attacks have an effect. They killed a bunch of us here. Maybe your hometown is not a big target. Pretend in your mind that it is, and imagine that your town has been attacked and nearly attacked at least seven times since 1920 by terrorists killing thousands, raining destruction miles around in the most densely populated and developed county in the US, maybe the world. NYC is not just a bunch of people. It is an important, vital place to the USA and the world. Some attacks today can take the entire town out. You may not like us or care about us, but if we all get destroyed it is going to hurt your lifestyle, and if you think having some precautions here in NYC is too expensive and hurts your liberties, picture what this country will become like if NYC is taken out. New Yorkers could use your empathy and support.

                • lawordisorder says:

                  don’t underestimate the power of freindships…i guees what im trying to say is there are lot and lots of powerfull PSYOPS in the very fact that this is an everyday NYC courthouse…as for the US guverment and the rest of the gang i think you can be pretty damn serten that we will keep a very close lookout to make sure that what ever comes along gets a proper responce..thats not to say that we do not fumble the ball from time to time…but in cases were you know that something is a high profile target…people around the globe are pretty good at carpooling so to speak…whatever the yank needs to pull this off they get

                  What im trying to say here take pride in confronting them on your doorstep look them in the eye and go don’t think for one minute that your gonna change the way i live and (The same time as you’ll be confronting your personal ghosts here) thats all part of the healing process

                  Just my five cents worth

                • Sara says:

                  “We are still occupying / protecting Korea, Germany, Japan, and Italy 50 and 60 years after those wars ended. ”

                  No, we are not occupying Germany, Japan or Italy. I don’t know exactly what our status of forces is in Korea, as that isn’t covered by this comment.

                  Have you ever heard of NATO — the North Atlantic Treaty Organization that came into being with a Treaty Harry Truman negotiated and got through the Senate in 1949?

                  Our US bases in Germany and Italy (and a few other places in Europe) are part of our commitment to NATO, and that is their status since the 1950’s. The Occupation ended with the formation of the Bonn Government, the BRD, in 1949. We negotiated new status of forces agreements in 51, again in 1955, again in 1972, and then after the unification of Germany in 1990. The Military Government of Germany ceased to exist in 1952 under terms signed in 1951, and in 1955 West Germany received back its rights to make Foreign Policy and have an Army and Navy in 1955 — when West Germany also joined NATO. In Italy we have a couple of seaports where our fleet in the area can tie up, but it has been cut way back since the end of the Cold War, as we don’t send the Fleet to Italy all that much any more.

                  We have an airbase in Northern Italy — it too is part of NATO, and all the other NATO airforces use it. Ask the Polish and Hungarian flyers how much more fun it is these days to schedule training flights in F-16’s into Italy than it was in the old days when they flew their MIG’s to some obscure place on the Black Sea. Catch up with the times, World War II and the Cold War are over.

                  You seem to have a very very bad case of “fear of bin Ladenism” and you need to get a handle on it. You remind me of a very obscure fear I developed in my teens as a result of reading a history of the US in the 1920’s. Got into my craw, and took years to throw off. It was a fear of new tennis shoes. You see, I read of the death of President Calvin Coolidge’s Son from blood poisoning that developed from a blister he got on his heel from a new pair of tennis shoes. Of course in the 20’s they could not treat this with anti-biotics, as no such thing existed — but after the mid 40’s, dying of a blister caused by new tennis shoes was somewhat less likely. Nonetheless, for years I had a fear of new tennis shoes.

                  The home remedy for “irrational fear of bin Ladenism” is to repeat on the hour the oft quoted sentence from FDR’s first administration, particularly the second clause about how fear causes paralysis that in turn leads to retreat instead of advance. Try it, it’s cheap.

                  • lawordisorder says:

                    I think you have a very exelent point there on the FDR qoute…haven’t rialy thought of it that way, came to the same conclusion years ago though….but i think yours i just as good…..

                    Just my five cents worth (that on goes strait in the toolbox, here at the coffee maker)

                  • staygold212 says:

                    I was being facile saying that we are occupying the defeated WW2 powers and being in Korea. However, I bet if you ask Italians, Okinawans, and Koreans, I bet they would regard our large and sometimes negative presence in their countries as being like an occupation. The benefit to them, free defense and free healthcare. Meanwhile, we get to pay for tens of thousands of troops in overseas bases. We have 30,000 in South Korea alone.

                    As for Bin Laden, I think he’s mainly a brand name, just like the governments of the USA, Pakistan, Israel, Egypt, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Afghanistan. Whatever these governments represent publicly is only partially related to what people working in and among these governments actually do. Sometimes these people work at cross purposes within their own governments, since some are working for other interests. Until we get to the bottom of incidents, the scandals behind the scandals, such as money trails, then can’t begin to address the dangers since the same players are still in place running the same plays. I find the players and the playbooks quite hackneyed.

                    This is beyond systems and structures and well-meaning people working for their national interests. We are talking about billions of dollars in tax-free money, which is quite motivating for some.

              • lawordisorder says:

                bmaz please remind there was one of the first cases were terrorist were tried in the US the judge came with something of a strong remark along the lines…… Im not going to grant you the very reason that you did this act (martyr=death penalty)instead im going to trow you in a prison cell for the rest of you human life were you will have ample time to contemplate over you actions….. something like that

                Just my five cents worth (damn im in dire need of a new body and brain)

  7. staygold212 says:

    I can hardly think of anything I agree with Joe Lieberman.

    I do think that the Terrorists (now accused Terrorists) should be tried in a Federal Court, and it is appropriate that this be the one in NYC near the World Trade Center. This court has a great deal of experience with high-profile terror trials. But I want this court process and the prisoners held off-shore away from my city in a Navy ship. This is about me not feeling like having an additional unnecessary target on me in my city where I live and work.

    This is partially about our Federal Government not being able to defend my city from plane attacks, nuclear attacks, or some other kind of WMD that could be shipped here in a shipping container, a truck or a backpack. The Federal Government has an awful record with anti-terrorism, not just stopping terrorism, but helping it along.

    Al-Qaeda is a US invention from thirty years ago. Sibel Edmonds contends that we were funding them through 9/10/2001. Now the US Army is paying the Taliban for protection. The (Afghanistan Minister for Counter-Narcotics and the former Pakistani Intelligence Chief’s) allege that the US military is using military aircraft to fly drugs out of Afghanistan!

    This is about Al Qaeda being homicidal. They don’t submit to our concept of justice. They do jailbreaks around the world. They bust into jails around the world to free their fellow terrorists.

    I don’t see that happening in NYC, but let me share with you a little history that has affected us locally here in NYC:
    The African Embassy Bombers of 1998 were supposed to be tried here in NYC, but their trial was postponed for weeks due to the World Trade Center collapsing five blocks away on 9/11/01. The trial was postponed because Downtown was poisoned by toxic dust, keeping 300,000 out of work for nearly a month, causing the loss of over 100,000 jobs. Was it pure coincidence that the 2001 WTC attacks happened on the opening day of the African Embassy Bombers’ Trial (the only crime for which Osama Bin Laden is indicted for)?

    The World Trade Center was attacked before in February 1993 by the largest truck bombing in US history up to that point, and had the terrorists had 10% more explosives (which the FBI helped them get and allowed them to keep), or had they had a better (for them) parking spot, then they would have successfully brought Tower One toppling into Tower Two into the surrounding buildings. Their goal: killing 250,000 people in NYC.

    The FBI used the same informant to actually stop an attack in June 1993, while the conspirators were mixing up enough bomb chemicals with the informant to blow up every bridge and tunnel into and out of Manhattan. The attack was to start by employee-infiltrators in the Waldorf Astoria Hotel, shooting the hotel up and bombing it. Then they were going to bomb all of Manhattan’s exits (the bridges and tunnels) from our 24 square mile island of 1.5 million residents and an additional 2 million commuters. Does this plot of mayhem sound familiar? It was last year’s Mumbai November 2008 attacks which killed hundreds. The 9/11/01 attacks were a rehash of the (accidentally) foiled Bojinka Plots of 1995-96 which involved the hijacking of multiple aircraft, blowing some up simultaneously, while others would be crashed into skyscrapers and federal facilities. When Condi Rice said that ‘no one could imagine that terrorists would use planes crashing into buildings as bombs,’ either she was lying or had no idea of history. When she was confronted with the 8/6/01 PDB “Bin Laden Determined to Attack in the US” which mentioned planes, flight schools, bombings and federal buildings, she said that she didn’t do anything about it because no one told her what to do about it. And she was in charge of National Security!

    Some of the 1993 plotters stabbed a NYC resident, a federal prison guard deep in the eye with a pen, giving him brain damage and motor control loss for the rest of his life. He almost died. It was an attempt to foment a jail break for the conspirators. This psychopathic terrorist was subdued. The guard attended their trial against all odds to show that he could walk again. Bravo to him. The homicidal maniac is in a SuperMax prison in Colorado now.

    Let’s remember the other part of the 9/11/01 attacks: Despite a forty year missile stand-off with the Soviet Union, the military couldn’t defend its own headquarters over an hour after the hijackings began, around a half hour after the planes hit the WTC. I’m sure that the Pentagon has anti-missile defenses. Missiles are much smaller and faster than commercial aircraft, yet the Pentagon was hit by a plane! That was a bigger shock to me than the WTC being attacked. Since 1993 I expected that the WTC’s time was going to come one day or another, but I never thought I’d see the Pentagon attacked, especially after the USSR collapsed. (Which the CIA seemed to miss happening.) Washington DC and NYC’s federal offices couldn’t even get it together enough to evacuate all their their buildings on 9/11/01. Even President Bush stuck around promoting reading in the Florida elementary school where he was. This school could have been a target. After boarding Air-force One it circled around a half hour without Air-force escorts.

    We have troops garrisoned in 200 bases around the globe. We have the largest military in the world, about as large as every other military combined. Twenty and thirty minutes after the first hijacking the military couldn’t protect NYC. The military and the Secret Service couldn’t even protect the President during an attack on the nation.

    Talk about bubbles. We have a military bubble. We have bubble heads in the FBI and the National Security Council. I do not trust the Federal Government to protect NYC on a good day.

    On 9/10/2009 the NYPD foiled a plot involving a truck, nine identical backpacks, and mixed bomb chemicals. The FBI wanted to let the plot unfold more so they could get a better prosecution or something. This followed their pattern with their stonewalling the Moussaoui investigation in Minnesota and the Arizona investigation in July and August 2001. Luckily, the NYPD works here in NYC, so they didn’t want to risk being killed by this attack, and the President was visiting that week, so the NYPD foiled the plot. I have no problem with the NYPD and the Federal Court House’s Security, but I don’t think we have the national capability to handle an internationally famous terror trial in NYC.

    I live on the edge of mass horrific destruction every day in NYC. I can’t see myself living elsewhere. I have plastic sheets, duct tape, potassium iodide pills for a certain kind of nuclear attack, filter masks — I’ve got them. I doubt they will save my life. I love my life here in NYC and I’m willing to die here in an attack, but I don’t want my city to be a further target because of a high profile trial.

    Al Qaeda follows patterns. Trials and jails with their terrorists get attacked. This justice issue is the Federal Government’s problem. I don’t want the Federal Government’s consistent problems with dealing with terrorists to become my problem again. If they had defended my city and my country in the first place, then the WTC wouldn’t have been attacked in 1993 or 2001.

    I am fine with this trial happening via the Southern District of New York’s Federal court, but the prisoners and the trial should be in a Navy ship going to random undisclosed locations, miles out of New York Harbor. The family members of the victims, the reporters, the lawyers and the judge can be picked up by a Naval vessel to take them to the trial.

    Loath him as much as I do, I’d be fine with Rudolph Giuliani’s ghoulish face being the last thing these terrorists see after they are convicted and as they are executed by him on that Naval Ship a few miles away in a secret location. Then dump them overboard ignominiously.

    I don’t want those creeps drawing an additional attack to where I live and work. The Federal Government cannot handle protecting my city in general, much less in a crisis situation, and this trial is going to require vigilance to prevent a crisis. The Federal Government is reliable: reliably incompetent to defend and protect its citizens and taxpayers, especially New Yorkers.

    If you would like to check my references, visit the History Commons’ Complete 9/11 Timeline and you can search them.

    The reference to the US military running drugs out of Afghanistan is here in Asia Times.

  8. staygold212 says:

    I spent an hour trying to insert paragraph breaks and spaces in my above comment. I’m sorry this bulletin board system is so kludgey. If you read my response above, thank you. I put a few hours into it at this point.

  9. Sara says:

    Staygold, You might like to look into the 1990 Senate Campaign in Minnesota where Joe Lieberman supported his cross-party friend, Rudy Boschwitz, a Republican Incumbant, called the Rabbi of the Senate, against the DFL Challenger in Minnesota, Paul Wellstone. Lieberman raised a good deal of money for Boschwitz who initially didn’t think he had a real race, but ended up spending all his eleven million, while Paul Wellstone won, spending a little over a million. I was a strong Wellstone Supporter, part of the coordinate campaign with responsibility for about a quarter of Minneapolis during the general election.

    Now, the last five days of that campaign focused on Rudy Bochwitz sending out a letter to the Jewish Community in Minnesota, arriving Friday before the election, claiming that Paul Wellstone was a “bad Jew.” The letter was partially written in Yiddish. It immediately hit the front pages of the paper, was denounced editorially, and was then denounced by most of the leadership of the Jewish Community, including most of the Rabbis. What it came down to was that Paul — a good son of the radical labor Lower East Side on his mother’s side of his family, and a son of a father whose family was wiped out by Stalin when the Jewish Community of Harbin was liquidated, was a “bad Jew” because he married his Baptist High School Sweetheart, and had raised his children in both the Reform and a vaguely Christian traditions. Believe me, such electorial tactics do not go down well in predominately Lutheran/Catholic Minnesota.

    Now, the morning after that election, as a DFL Campaign Manager, I was in one of out HQ’s making certain that key lists important to future campaigns got rescued and properly filed. Telephone Rang at 7AM. It was Senator Lieberman calling, mad as hell — what in he hell happened to his good friend the Republican Rudy Boschwitz. Joe was calling for someone he knew well who worked out of that HQ office, but since she wasn’t available he let loose on me. I’ll never forget that call. In the process he said the “Bad Jew” letter was partially his idea, and I was the one to tell him that it had backfired big time, and had been front page in the newspaper for four days, and we were in the midst of a state wide debate regarding the proposition that a Swedish Lutheran who married a Norwegian Lutheran might be a bad Lutheran. (Joe didn’t appreciate essentially Garrison Keillor style humor.)

    What is “offensive” and “unacceptable” is the use of ethnic or religious identity in an election process where the intent is to “use it” to promote the notion of superior identity over the same qualities of your opponent. Where Religious or Ethnic Identity contributes to voters understanding your basic philosophy, your approach to political choices, I think it quite appropriate. When Lieberman has a history of making judgments as to who should be a Senator (in his own party) in another state based on who they happily married thirty five years previously, and with whom he raised three children, then I think Lieberman’s own sense of his Jewish Identity is deeply flawed, This kind of example should be well known, and made as public as he helped make matters when he helped develop the “Bad Jew” letter tactic against Paul Wellstone. Lieberman has never apologized to Paul, not even to his surviving sons after the plane crash. And unless one comprehends Lieberman’s tactics in this specific instance, you have no idea how destructive (and offensive and unacceptable) his use of identity can be.

    In Minnesota we are fairly used to State-wide Senate Campaigns between two Jews, endorsed by the Republican and DFL Parties, where as Jews, the candidates do not at all agree with each other’s politics, and indeed will vote in the Senate in quite different ways. We have had four of them (well three and 9/10th actually). 1990 and 1996, Boschwitz versus Wellstone. 2002, Wellstone (till the plane crash) against Coleman, and now Coleman versus Franken. In Minneapolis, the 5th District, it was largely the DFL Jewish Community that led the decision to nominate Keith Ellison, the first African American Muslim sent to Congress, largely because Congress needed a Muslim who could clarify matters, could hold our “safe seat” for years, gain senority, and in the meantime travel in the Muslim World as an authentic elected official, elected by a majority Lutheran Community with Jewish support.

    We also have, in Minneapolis, a growing Muslim Community made up primarly of recent immigrants from Somalia. You may have read bits and pieces of news in recent months about the 20 or so young Somali men who were recruited locally, and went to Somalia to fight with the al Quada linked Al-Shabass organization. Three have been arrested and indicted, and just last week the Dutch arrested the recruiter and fund-raiser who will soon be returned to Minnesota for indictment and trial.

    For months now, elders and members of the Somali Community have argued that they should be permitted to try these individuals in their own sharia court. They predicate that argument on their view of the special military commissions set up to try the Gitmo internes — they view them as special courts for Muslims. Any local radio talk show close to this topic devolves into the justification for a sharia court based on the example of Bush created special commissions for Muslims . One reason I strongly support using the Article III Federal Courts for all possible Gitmo cases is precisely because the notion of special courts for Muslims has to be discarded as soon as possible. We have to back up all the educational work Keith Ellison (a former Defense Attorney) and others do in the Somali Community regarding the fairness of Federal Court Practice — while at the same time saying quite clearly that it is illegal to go join up with al-Quada for Jihad, and if you do so, you might suffer serious consequences. I don’t think that Joe Lieberman or others who follow his thinking and argument against normal Federal Court trials comprehend this dimension of the issue.

  10. Sara says:

    Staygold — you seem well informed on much of the details, but you need to get hold of your fears. You probably have a better chance of being knocked off by one of those NYC bike messengers who hops the curb when faced with a traffic jam-up, than you do coming face to face with a terrorist.

    New York Southern District did at least five major trials against al-Quada linked persons during the 1990’s, and the only person injured was the prison guard you noted. Getting injured is an occupational hazzard for prison guards, as no matter what they are accused of, some inmates try to attack guards. Federal Court buildings have layers of security which can be increased as needed, and these defendents will get “the works.” No need for a navy ship — should we try Somalis on a ship in Lake Superior? This is why we build Federal Court buildings like Bank Vaults — and why we ship the guilty to Florence Colorado to Super-Max.

    True, the Feds get things wrong, sometimes very wrong. For instance you mention the failure of the FBI to pay attention to Colleen Rowley’s request for permission to read Moussaoui lap top computer. The real problem here is less the stupid failure prior to 9/11, it was Muller’s failure to recognize that the Minneapolis Field Office had pushed the request, probably because he was doing CYA (Cover your ass) in the wake of FBI HQ’s failure to ask for a FISA warrant when Rowley’s team first put in the request. She sacrificed her 20 year FBI career on that one when she got Paul Wellstone to ask Bob Graham to call her before the Joint Intelligence Committee to point out that Muller was lying, and released her letters to the press. Ever wonder why George Tenet fixed on Moussaoui instantly with first word of the planes hitting the towers? Well in Mpls the 2 person CIA office is on the same hallway as the FBI in the Federal Building, and unlike in DC, they are very friendly neighbors. The request to get Moussaoui’s French Files to back up a FISA Warrant was a matter of running next door and asking CIA how to do it. Like going next door and borrowing a cup of sugar. The problem was FBI HQ needed a very good ass kicking by a female agent in high heels, there were plenty of people in the system who knew how to investigate things properly, but they were not in HQ. They were not respected as quality workers. Being afraid will never change these kinds of cultural systems.

    No Question but what during the 1980’s the US, through the CIA furnished funds to what became al-Queda once the Soviets left Afghanistan. Congress voted the money, Reagan called them Freedom Fighters, and Charlie Wilson loved his role as the big buck Texan who delivered the arms and money…and brought along his beauty pagent winners when he met with his heroes from Afghanistan who did the fighting. Bill Casey loved flying into Islamabad to consult with his ISI opposite numbers. It is all fairly meaningless when you get to the late 1990’s and the beginnings of al-Quada’s attacks on American Targets…except it is sad CIA or State didn’t attach someone to all that effort who could study radical Islam when at least some Americans were quite welcome. A decent Anthropologist sent to observe in say 84-85 when things really ramped up might have been more than a good investment. I visited in Peshawar during that period and easily picked up fascinating bits of information. During dinner at the hotel someone pointed out a table of men who they claimed were the experts from the “French Connection” hired by Pakistani Army Officers to set up the Heroin labs. Nurses, running a TB program for the World Council of Churches told me about threats from Arab Men who didn’t want Muslim women and children treated for TB. One of my translators had previously helped Dan Rather during one of his visits — told me Rather had an hour’s film on the drug trade — it was never shown in the US, but the video was used by a German company for a report by German TV out of Hamburg. CBS couldn’t bring itself to show the film which might lead some viewers to question what we were doing in Afghanistan and Pakistan. But all that is now fairly irrelevant, except that unless mistakes get publicity, they probably get made over and over again. Simple fact — whenever you hire a proxy army to do a covert dirty job, you always have a disposal problem if your policy or interests change. Lesson should have been learned after the Bay of Pigs…after Iran in 1953, or in Central America in the 1950’s.

    • staygold212 says:

      Sara, I have noted that Federal Court House security in NYC is fine. What is not fine is our protection against a nuclear weapon detonating in New York Harbor in a shipping container, planes crashing into buildings, a dirty bomb going off on a crossroads making it useless for years, poison gas or germs released into the subways, affecting 2 million riders. We could really use Federal help with such things.

      Planes have crashed into buildings in NYC due to cascades of Federal failures. NYC lost more than one person due to Federal Trials in NYC. On 9/11/01, the day of the African Embassy Bombers’ trial we lost nearly 3,000 here, and we lost over 100,000 jobs.

      Sarin gas, bombs and Ricin have been used in urban terror attacks in other cities’ subways, transit centers, and buses. Congress has redacted the section of their report on intelligence failures leading up to 9/11/01’s attacks, the part about foreign assistance to the terrorists, assistance that can maybe help them get nukes. And I’m not talking about Saddam Hussein’s Iraq. That was completely false.

      But the Federal Government does not protect NYC. The Federal Government makes NYC more dangerous by funding terrorists for 30 years, and funding them today. I cited how the Federal Government (the Army) is paying the Taliban now, and if the military is shipping drugs out of Afghanistan now, then who in Afghanistan is benefiting from all that cash?

      President Bush wanted to sell our ports to Dubai, which has some links to terrorists and their networks. If the Federal Government is going to have its Federal Trial in the Southern District of New York, then move the Federal Court Facility off my island and float it in a secret place off the coast of New York City. They (judge, lawyers, reporters, witnesses) can commute to the floating Federal Court.

      As for Joe Lieberman, he is one of the most odious to serve in the Senate now or in history. I abhor him. I know he ab/uses religion for political gain, Sara. He ab/uses anything for political gain. But I don’t see how his calling for Military Commissions is directly linked with Israel like (cinnamonape) does – what is the link with Israel and this issue? That Joe Lieberman is a Jew and all Jews want Israel to take over US governmental functions? I can hardly make sense of that not even tangential reference. That one was disquieting.

      (Phoenix Woman) then said Lieberman’s trying to get revenge for not being Vice President by bombing Muslims. This reminds me of that other revengeful Jew, Shylock, who insisted on his pound of flesh for his debt. It also implies that this Jewish politician Lieberman is sneaky, taking over in secret. He’s upset, so he transforms his sick disappointment in not taking over to hurt ‘his’ enemy religion, not ‘our’ nation’s enemy, terrorists who attacked us. I’m Jewish. I have no problem with Muslims who have no problem with me. Stick to the issue of Joe Lieberman wanting military commissions and leave the innuendo out. Or if you think Jews are sneaky and vengeful, then start a thread on that, and propose your solutions to what ‘we’ need to do about ‘them, the sneaky Jews who aren’t really Americans.’

      (shekissesfrogs) mentions that Lieberman is a control freak. OK… I can maybe go with that, and that he wants the trials to go his way, and he wants tho deny the terrorists their rights, and he wants to control the message…but with all the crypto-anti-Jewishness on the thread, my hackles are up. Her comments remind me of the memes of the manipulative Jew, working to control our perceptions (deceiving the public).
      Then shekissesfrogs continues that Lieberman is dehumanizing Muslims by denying their human rights. (Just like other Jews, the Israelis, dehumanize the Palestinians in the lands that Israel took over in a defensive war.
      No mention that Israeli Arabs have more rights than in the entire Arab world. All Israelis get votes and representatives in their parliament, the Knesset.
      Meanwhile, Jews who have lived in the Arab world for thousands of years were expelled from the Arab Middle East when Israel was founded, and their property was seized. That is not respecting their human rights, and that is an expulsion. But Israel welcomed those refugees and helped them get their lives together and build a nation together.
      Meanwhile, the Palestinians across the middle east are neglected by their fellow Arabs who let them languish in bantustans not just in Palestine, but in Lebanon, and elsewhere. You could be third-generation-born Palestinian in wealthy Kuwait and they’ll ‘let’ you be a Doctor, but they won’t let you have Kuwaiti citizenship or own Kuwaiti property. The Jews and Israel are not the only nationality and people neglecting the Palestinians.)
      Then shekissesfrogs mentions AIPAC benefiting from anti-muslim fear to sneakily raise funds.
      If a Catholic Senator advocates something, is that Senator sneaking the Pope into taking over?

      (bell’s) comments are on-topic and directed at Lieberman the politician, nothing about his tendencies or his sneaking support for an another nation. I totally agree that Lieberman is worth ignoring and then we must unite to soundly defeating him and decisively ending his vile political career.

      Sara, I don’t see how Lieberman’s disgusting use of religion (good Jew / bad Jew) in the Wellstone / Boschwitz campaign of 1990 has any relevance on Lieberman wanting military commissions for terrorists today. True, he has used and tried to use religion for political gains, but I don’t see how his religion has anything to do with his stand on this issue. Lieberman is probably positioning terrorist justice as a war issue needing war courts, and if we use civilian courts, then that means the war on terror can really be a criminal justice matter and not a huge expensive open-ended war, which is probably what he and his Christian allies want. I said Christian ironically.

      I draw a parallel to Lieberman’s stand for military commissions to Fox and their friends’ positioning the mass murder in Fort Hood as a terror issue, to frame Obama as letting a terror attack happen on US soil as a result of political correctness and other current administration failures. These stands and their talking points are generated somewhere, and we, who are supposed to be people of knowledge and conscience, should be organizing to unite and deal with that, rather than bring up divisive anti-Jewish innuendos that are irrelevant at best.

      Finally, I want to address the DC Headquarter’s obstruction of the Minnesota FBI’s Moussaoui investigation. This is beyond CYA. Look up Dave Frasca of the FBI Radical Fundamentalist unit in ‘s 9/11 timeline, and refer to Kristin Breitweiser’s “Wake-Up Call: the Political Education of a 9/11 Widow.” Refer again to Coleen Crowley’s famous memo how those obstructionists have been promoted. Even after the first plane crashed into Tower One, DC FBI said, let’s not open up the Moussaoui investigation yet, because we want to “see what else happens.”

      You mentioned a trial being a good way to debunk 9/11 Conspiracy Theorists. Do you believe that 4 planes hijacked by documented terrorists wearing official airline flight uniforms was really just one person? That is absurd, of course! We know of 19 people. That is a conspiracy right there. More than one person committing a crime is a conspiracy. What we need to debunk wild theories is a real 9/11 Investigation with subpoena power with only experts on it, including family steering committee members, pilots, engineers, architects… and no politicians, especially no politicians who testified to their own commission as witnesses! Having a commission with a real budget and no political restraints is what we need.

      Let’s compare the 9/11 Commission to other investigations:
      The Triangle Commission (146 killed) had a three year long investigation avidly followed by the press. It led to 36 workplace and fire safety laws in NYS. It also led to the New Deal, including Worker’s Compensation, Unemployment Insurance, Disability, and Social Security. All of which still benefit millions of people. Could you imagine today’s recession without the good that came out of the Triangle fire of 1911?
      Bill Clinton’s sexual harassment / Whitewater investigation was about 5 years long and it cost $70 million.
      Mike Espy’s investigation for corruption at the USDA took years and tens of millions of dollars.
      The 9/11 commission was stonewalled for over a year, and then they finally extended it to 14 months with a $15 million budget (originally $3 million).
      And you wonder where conspiracy theories are coming from? They come from shadows, feelings of dis-empowerment (which are justified), and cover-up/guilty behavior.

      Sara, you seem really smart, thoughtful, experienced, and connected: get the irrelevant Jew-bug out of your head, please push for a real independent 9/11 investigation, and please advocate for the safety of NYC as an American.

      Also, I’m someone living in the target of terror, terror that is often aided by US failures and active support of terrorists. I would like you to respect my fears that the Federal Government’s actions have abidingly hurt my city and make it less safe. I want you to join me in pushing for much more Federal protection of NYC, especially with this trial locating here.

      • bmaz says:

        Well jesus, now that you put it that way, I guess we just better all cash our chips in now and run a away and hide!! None of your hyperventilating fears are any different without holding trials in NYC and/or other locations in the US. You might want to take a fresh look at the founding documents of this country; they do NOT place the perceived fringe safety of the individual above the due process exercise of the rule of law in and for this country. In fact, they do just the opposite.

        Better run for your life while you can, because that’s the end.

        And by the way, give it a rest with your “Jew bug” crap and insinuations; it is out of line.

        • lawordisorder says:

          Hear hear (standing ovation)…..

          Here at the coffeemachine we tend to focus on the WE CHOOSE NOT TO BE AFRAID approach…and we take much comfort and pride in the London commuter and subway systems approach to this problem AKA we don’t let buggers tell us how to live and what train to catch…you wanna bomb our sorry ass thats fine with us cuz you cant get us all ….everywhere in one blow …and somewhere there’s a guy doing the coffemachine that’ll nail your bum to the church door aka surrender the living culprits to the justice system

          Just my five cents worth (as the painkiller kicks in here at coffee grinder thingy….damn those things make loud noises when you swallow)

      • dakine01 says:

        Do you believe that 4 planes hijacked by documented terrorists wearing official airline flight uniforms was really just one person?

        Wow! Where the hell did that come from I wonder? They were not wearing “official airline flight uniforms.” They were wearing standards, everyday slacks and shirts if the vids showing Atta et al are at all to be believed.

        Airline personnel, even the lowly paid staffers at the gates, do tend to recognize their own airlines’ uniforms. No account I read anywhere had any airline staffers saying anything about four or five extra persons in American or United uniforms on the flights in question

        • staygold212 says:

          Thanks, Dakine01. That’s a valid response: I concede that I need to verify if they were wearing official airline flight uniforms. It is an important issue. I recall that I had read that, but it is an important fact to verify.

          This is what I also know: Madeline ‘Amy’ Sweeney indicated that some of the terrorists were in the cockpit, and that the plane was flying differently/erratically before the terrorists in First Class started killing people there and declaring that there was a hijacking. Some of the terrorists must have been allowed in the cockpit as guests.

          In addition, some flight uniforms were found in their luggage that missed the flight and/or was in their car parked at Logan Airport. I was assuming that they were wearing uniforms, and that the ones they were wearing was from a foreign national airline. I will check into this. If, for example, they were wearing the Saudi airline’s flight uniforms, that would be interesting, especially since the leaks about the redacted intelligence failures report mentions Saudi family/national assistance to the terrorists.

          Even with that leak, and without the foreign national airlines uniforms issue, my point that the Federal Government cannot be depended on to protect New York City is valid, since we have not reacted to Saudi assistance to the attackers, but include them as allies in the war on terror. Instead, we went to war with Iraq, which had nothing to do with the attacks, and allowed us to let the situation in Afghanistan flounder.

          I give many more examples of Federal failures to protect New York City and the Federal Government’s assistance or acquiescence to terrorists that attacked us from 1979 until today, too.

          Just to be clear: one or two million people work in myriad Federal Departments and Agencies. I’m not blaming every Federal Employee for New York City being endangered and not protected. I’m stating that people working for the Federal Government made these terrible decisions. Some of these people are incompetent. Some are probably out to increase their power or to foment violence, or to profit from all that. Whatever it is, the Federal Government has harmed NYC and I’m doing my best to prevent or limit the damage from this next move.

  11. JohnnyTable70 says:

    Isn’t ironic that the fear mongers don’t live in NYC? Yet, these same fear mongers who probably cheered the that eponymous Daily News header “Ford to NYC: Drop Dead!” Moreover, these same fear mongers were quick to “adopt” the suffering that NYC endured and make it there own and of course let’s not forget milking 9/11 by holding the RNC at MSG in 2004. So no it doesn’t surprise me in the least that these cowards are suddenly overcome with fear while real New Yorkers are asking why are these guys such big pussies.

  12. freepatriot says:

    anybody else gettin SICK AND FUCKING TIRED of repuglitards telling us what America is incapable of doing ???

    why do these fucking prick hate America

    is protecting george bush from criminal prosecutions really worth scraping the entire fucking country ???

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