Inside Guantánamo with 9/11 suspect Ammar al-Baluchi
The 9/11 trial is the biggest criminal trial in all of US history. Because it was an event that had never happened before it’s not easy for the legal team to come up with a protocol to handle it.
Guantanamo occupies a strange position is US jurisprudence, which is why it was chosen for this particular case. It’s considered extraterritorial to many of the laws of the United States.
Ammar al-Baluchi is charged for being a conspirator on 9/11 along with four other men accused of planning the terrorist attack. Allegedly his involvement was that he was given some money, somebody called him and asked for that money and he wired the money to that person.
Ammar was arrested in Pakistan in 2003 and transferred to CIA custody shortly afterwards. He was shackled for months in stress positions, he was subjected to sexual humiliation, made to stand for days, brutally beaten constantly, and tortured with water. In fact, the first 25 minutes of the movie Zero Dark Thirty is a depiction of the treatment that Ammar received. The director of the movie was given access to the records, yet Ammar’s legal team has been told that the information contained in those reports is irrelevant to their case. This is a death penalty trial and the defense lawyers should be entitled to every scrap of evidence that could be material to their case.
The legal team consists of civilians and uniformed officers. It’s a unique position to be a uniformed officer whose job is to take on the government.
The family members of victims are invited to observe the proceedings. They feel like the same things are argued over and over again and that the issue won’t be resolved in their lifetime.
One of the reasons this process has been so long is because the government has been getting in its own way. It illegally reviewed the attorney-client privileged communications, tried to put an informant on one of the defense teams, and has even planted listening devices in the meeting rooms. Also they deny every discovery request and witness request. What is really going on? Find out more now.