This is a response to a piece written by Jessica Pieklo in the Causes section found here: http://www.care2.com/causes/civil-rights/blog/more-abuses-from-war-on-terror/
While the chosen authors of that section can spew nonsense at will, we are allowed only 1800 characters to correct them. Rather than attempt the impossible, I am responding here instead.
Jessica Pieklo wrote one of the rankest pieces of propaganda ever to appear on Care2 - and that is saying a lot. Entitled "More Abuses From War on Terror", it purports to bemoan the unjust treatment of an innocent young Muslim named Sabri Benkahla, who has found himself in maximum isolation in a Federal prison, solely due to the mean spiteful Department, of Justice for perjury after being acquitted in his terrorism trial. As Miss Pieklo informs us:
The federal government was not pleased with Benkahla's acquittal. Less than a month from Benkahla's exoneration in federal court Benkahla was forced to testify before a federal grand jury where he was accused, and eventually convicted of, perjury. The statements forming the basis of Benkahla's perjury conviction involved the same facts and circumstances of Benkahla's previous acquittal and thus formed an improper and unlawful basis for his conviction.
Here are the salient facts dishonestly omitted by Miss Pieklo. First the background from the report by the US Attorney's Office:
This investigation arose as part of the investigation of individuals attending the Dar al Arqam Islamic Center in Falls Church, Virginia. In June 2003, Benkahla and ten others were indicted by a grand jury in Alexandria for conspiring to commit various offenses including mounting expeditions to attack India in Kashmir and Russia in Chechnya in the course of training for jihad in Virginia and Pakistan. Among the defendants, Masaud Khan, Seifullah Chapman, Randall Royer, Ibrahim Al-Hamdi, Mohammed Aatique, Yong Kwon, and Khwaja Hasan, were alleged to have attended jihad training camps operated by the Pakistani terror group, Lashkar-e-Taiba, in 2000 and 2001. In September 2003, in a superseding indictment, Khan and Royer were charged with conspiring to wage war against the United States, aid the Taliban, aid Al-Qaeda, and Khan, Royer, Chapman, and Hammad Abdur-Raheem were charged with providing assistance to the Lashkar-e-Taiba; in that same indictment, Sabri Benkahla was charged with supplying services to the Taliban, and using a firearm in furtherance of that offense in connection with his alleged participation in a jihad training camp in Afghanistan in July 1999.
Benkahla succeeded in having his trial separated from the other defendents, and was subsequently acquitted in a bench trial while the other ten were convicted. After the acquittal, Benkahla was given immunity, as we learn from the US Attorney's Office:
Following his acquittal, Benkahla was granted statutory immunity. Pursuant to his immunity agreement, he testified twice before the grand jury, and submitted to interviews with the FBI. Benkahla testified before a grand jury in Alexandria in August 2004 and again in November 2004, and was asked about the circumstances of his participation in jihad training camps or combat in Afghanistan or Pakistan in the summer of 1999. He further was asked about individuals that he knew who had participated in such jihad training or combat, or individuals he knew due to their connection to terrorism. These individuals included eight individuals from Dar Al-Arqam who either obtained jihad training from Lashkar-e-Taiba or otherwise associated with the group in Pakistan, another from Dar Al-Arqam who joined Al-Qaeda in Saudi Arabia in 2003, two specially designated global terrorists, and an individual suspected of being an aide to Abu Musab al Zarqawi and to Al-Qaeda of Iraq.
Of the individuals associated with Dar Al-Arqam, Randall Royer and Ibrahim Al-Hamdi attended jihad training camps run by Lashkar-e-Taiba in Pakistan in 2000. Seifullah Chapman was at those camps on 9/11; Yong Kwon, Khwaja Hasan, Muhammed Aatique, and Masaud Khan left the United States to go to those camps immediately after 9/11 upon the urging of Ali Al-Timimi in order to obtain training to fight against the American troops they expected soon to invade Afghanistan. In 2002, Ahmed Abu Ali joined Al-Qaeda in Saudi Arabia.
Lashkar-e-Taiba was designated a terrorist organization by the United States in December 2001. After that time, Ali Asad Chandia, Masaud Khan, and Seifullah Chapman assisted Lashkar-e-Taiba official Muhammad Ajmal Khan in his attempts to acquire for the organization materials including software to control an unmanned aerial vehicle, kevlar, and night vision goggles.o
This poor innocent boy, as Miss Pieklo would have us believe, is actually a very bad character - a terrorist who trained to attack us. And that isn't just the opinion of the Justice Department, it was the unanimous decsion of the jury that heard the evidence and convicted him of lying about his involvement and that of the others.
Miss Pieklo also seems a bit put out about Benkahla's accomodations:
While serving out his 121 month sentence and challenging the basis of his perjury conviction, Benkahla was transfered to a secret housing unit within the federal prison. Called Communication Management Units (CMUs), they were designed to house prisoners viewed by the government as terrorists. Conditions in the CMUs are desolate. Prisoners face near-solitary confinement are intentionally cut-off from the outside world. Despite the fact that Behkahla's sentencing judge stated specifically that Benkahla was not a terrorist, called him a "model citizen" and stated that the likelihood of Benkahla committing another crime were "infintesimal" Benkahla was transferred to a CMU where he remains in restrictive custody.
No kidding. He was convicted for lying about his terrorist trainings, activities and associations. Do you really think it's a good idea to let these terrorists continue their conspiring in prison? A lot of bad guys are in solitary - so what? Here's another question for you, Miss Pieklo: why do you so grossly distort the facts here, and invent fanciful legal arguments in order to enable somebody who would just as soon kill us - and yes, you too?
Nobody should ever trust a writer who so dishonestly misstates a case for partisan purposes. Even Miss Pieklo must realize the weakness of her position, or she would not have felt the need to so grossly distort reality.
CMUs disproportionately house Muslim prisoners, many of whom like Benkahla, have never been convicted of terrorism-related crimes. Prisoners are transferred to CMUs without any opportunity for a hearing and without any legitimate means of challenging the basis for the move.
Let me give you a clue about that: there are some number of Muslim prisoners there because they are the ones who currently conspire to and commit anti-US attacks on civilians. In other words, Islamist extremists are the enemy. During World War II the POW's tended to be disproportionately German and Japanese. That's just the way it works.
Boy, this Jeffery guy sure gets paid well to post this drivel.
I'm especially fond of his ad hom approach ot debating the issues: that is attack the character (or in this case, make up a character to attack) of anyone who disagrees with him--characterize them as "America-Hating Liberals" and ignore any key points and researchable fact.
Gee, I wonder why this group is mainly just "Jeffery" talking to himself.
Because he is a paid troll? Hmmmmm.....
It's true. I'm paid millions of dollars because the right really cares what a few people on some obscure website think.
Methinks the 'gentleman' doth protest too much
Why are such bizzare accusations made? If you believe such drivel put your name to it