Friday, December 05, 2008

LAX Wannabe Jihadi Reneges On Cooperation..And still Keeps Same Sentence

This is exhibit "a" in how not to win the War on Jihad.

Al-Qaeda operative Ahmed Ressam, pictured above, was convicted of attempting to bomb Los Angeles International airport.

His prison term was reduced to 22 years, on the basis that he agreed to cooperate with Federal authorities in arresting and convicting some of his jihad associates.

He gave evidence on the training camps he attended in Afghanistan and on al-Qaeda's use of safe houses, and on the basis of his testimony, two al-Qaeda associates, — Abu Doha, identified by US authorities as one of Europe’s highest-ranking Al Qaeda figures, and Samir Ait Mohamed, who allegedly helped Ressam in the Los Angeles bombing conspiracy were picked up and charged.

Except Ressam suddenly stopped co-operating with the feds back in early 2003, and recanted his testimony, after federal prosecutors went back to court to get his original sentence of 45 years re-instated.

“Our government was put in a horrible situation,” said Mark Bartlett, first assistant U.S. attorney in Seattle. “We had gone to two of our closest allies, Great Britain and Canada, and said . . . arrest these people, keep them in custody, and we promise we will bring them to the United States. . . . We will hold them accountable. And then we have to go back and say we are unable to try them.”

Ressam’s decision to stop singing forced the U.S. to abandon prosecution of Abu Doha and Mohamed, in spite of the fact that Britain and Canada had held the men in custody at our request. The British are still watching him, but they changed Abu Doha’s detention to house arrest back in July. It's obvious that someone in al-Qaeda got to Ressam and let him know that unless he kept quiet, he was unlikely to live long, even in prison.And that threat probably included his family.

Ressam told the Federal judge, semi-retired John Coughenour that he recanted statements he made earlier implicating other alleged terrorists.

"I did not know what I was saying," Ressam said. "I have escaped my words, finally. . . . Sentence me to life in prison or anything you wish. I will have no objection to your sentence. Thank you."

So..what do you think the judge did? He allowed Ressam to get away with this double dealing without any penalty, refusing to recalculate his sentence - Ressam gets to keep the benefit of the shorter sentence he got for agreeing to cooperate without having to follow through on his end.

Coughenour's rationale for this stupidity was that Ressam had cooperated sorta, he was therefore entitled to his original sentence of 22 years...for trying to kill hundreds of people at LAX.

I must wonder if the judge would have felt quite so lenient if Ressam had been successful and a few of Judge Coughenour's loved ones had been in that terminal.

However, I believe I have a compromise that satifies th enecessities of justice and is compassionate in sparing Ahmed Ressam th ehorrors of prison.

Offer to change his sentence from prison to hanging ( ideally from one of the towers at LAX), followed by a pigskin burial. Not only is it far more just and a good example to other like minded jihadis, but the willingness of th ecourt to impose that sentence might just convince this cockroach that abiding by his contract in helping to put his fellow jihadis behind bars is a pretty good idea after all.

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