You don’t say! Suburban Alexandria, VA not keen to host GITMO terrorists for trial
Posted by danishova on March 25, 2009
An outcry is growing in Alexandria over a prospect no one seems to like: terrorist suspects in the suburbs.
No one seems to like? Are there some people kinda sorta on the fence over this?
The historic, vibrant community less than 10 miles from the White House markets itself as a "federal friendly zone." But it has turned decidedly unfriendly to news that the Obama administration might move some detainees from their highly controlled military fortress at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to Alexandria to stand trial at the federal courthouse….
…The 2006 death penalty trial of Zacarias Moussaoui, who was convicted of conspiring in the terrorist attacks of Sept, 11, 2001, turned the neighborhood into a virtual encampment, with heavily armed agents, rooftop snipers, bomb-sniffing dogs, blocked streets, identification checks and a fleet of television satellite trucks.
Hey, it sounds like fun. We can all pretend that we’re living in an episode of 24, and take turns being Jack Bauer.
President Obama has vowed to close Guantanamo by January, and the government is reviewing files on the roughly 240 detainees. The administration has strongly indicated that some will be transferred to federal courts, and a senior Justice Department official recently named Alexandria, along with Manhattan, as possible destinations.
Don’t blame me…I didn’t vote for Barack, but how did Alexandria, VA vote? Why 71% went for Obama/Biden! Better luck next time, suckers.
Alexandria Sheriff Dana A. Lawhorne, who operates the city jail, said federal security requirements for housing suspects could "overwhelm the system" if multiple detainees are brought there.
No problem. Just ask Barack for some extra Stimulus funding. You’ll be fine.
City officials and some legislators are concerned that terror trials would take years, shut down roads and cost millions and could invite attacks from terrorist sympathizers. Business owners in the dense area around the courthouse — newly filled with hotels, restaurants and luxury apartments — fear disruptions amid a declining economy.
Okay, make that a whole lot of stimulus bucks.
Local officials acknowledged that they cannot control the docket at the federal courthouse and said they would work with the Justice Department to minimize problems. But the resistance in Alexandria, one of the few places known for handling high-level terrorism and national security cases, illustrates some of the practical complexities facing the president’s plan to shutter the controversial detention facility.
I’m shocked! Who could have known this would happen?
The Guantanamo detainees include the five accused planners of Sept. 11, among them former al-Qaeda operations chief Khalid Sheik Mohammed. Putting detainees on trial in Alexandria would mean moving them from an isolated island prison 90 miles from Florida to a neighborhood brimming with residents, thousands of federal employees and the new Westin Alexandria Hotel 190 feet from the courthouse door.
It’s too darn bad they haven’t found Bin Laden, so he could spend some quality time in Alexandria too.
"It would be a disaster," said Rep. Frank R. Wolf (R-Va.), who co-sponsored legislation to ban the use of federal funds to transfer detainees to Virginia detention facilities, one of at least 10 similar bills filed by Republicans nationwide. In a March 13 letter to Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr., Wolf questioned how officials would protect the community.
There go those torture-loving Republicans again, just champing at the bit to force the poor terrorists to live in inhumane conditions at GITMO.
…Matt Branigan, president of Fairfax-based Watermark Risk Management International, said that the security could cost millions and that a courthouse in a less-populated area would be safer than Alexandria.
There ya go, solution found. Sic them on people who live in a less-populated area (preferably a Red State). We can get back to focusing like a laser beam on the economy now.
"The concern is that someone from the terrorist side of things would want to make some statement in conjunction with the trials," said Branigan, a former senior Air Force anti-terrorism officer. He said the new development in the area "makes the security plan much more complicated. You have more locations to cover, more roofs to lock down with snipers."
No mention of whether there are schools in the vicinity.
We know that thanks to Amazing Magic Word Tricks performed by Barack the Magician, terrorism is now called a “man-caused Disaster”, and the “War on Terror” is now called an “Overseas Contingency Operation”. Anyone know what we call terrorists now? And do you know, are terrorist attacks on our own soil to be referred to as “Local Contingency Operations” or something?
Thanks to Ace for the reminder.