Monday, May 31, 2010

Israel does not have a lot to explain

Herewith a video taken of the attacks against IDF troops landing on the ship Mavi Mamara containing "peaceful" activists.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Terrorists get college education? Israelis hope to say "no more."

The Jerusalem Post believes that a newly introduced bill removing some of the privileges enjoyed by Hamas terrorists held in Israeli prisons is a step in the right direction towards balancing Hamas's treatment of Gilad Schalit.
In an attempt to put pressure on the Hamas leadership in Gaza to release Gilad Schalit, the Ministerial Committee for Legislation this week approved a bill that, if ratified, would take away some of the amenities enjoyed by Hamas terrorists currently incarcerated in Israeli prisons, including many captured by the IDF during December 2008-January 2009’s Operation Cast Lead. No longer would these inmates be allowed to enjoy the cultural edification of multi-channel cable TV. Nor would they be permitted to pursue a higher education through Israel’s Open University. Access to books and visits by relatives might be curtailed. Prolonged isolation of prisoners is also being considered.
Gilad Schalit is the Israeli soldier who was kidnapped by Hamas from Israeli soil about four years ago and remains hidden by Hamas without being allowed contact with the outside world during that time.

The Israeli bill should be enacted, sooner rather than later. It will not free Gilad Schalit, but it will salve the wounds of Schalit's absence.

Read the full editorial.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Krauthammer - Modernize Miranda for the age of terror

"[Law enforcement] interviewed Mr. Shahzad . . . under the public safety exception to the Miranda rule. . . . He was eventually transported to another location, Mirandized and continued talking."

-- John Pistole,

FBI deputy director, May 4

All well and good. But what if Faisal Shahzad, the confessed Times Square bomber, had stopped talking? When you tell someone he has the right to remain silent, there is a distinct possibility that he will remain silent, is there not? And then what?"

So begins Krauthammer's analysis of the use of Miranda warnings for terrorism suspects. He ends his column-

My view is that we should treat enemy combatants as enemy combatants, whether they are U.S. citizens (Shahzad) or not (the underwear bomber). If, however, they are to be treated as ordinary criminals, then at least agree on this: no Miranda rights until we know everything that public safety demands we need to know.

I couldn't agree with Krauthammer more strongly. Treating these folks as "ordinary criminals" is too great a risk for public safety.

What do you think?

Read the full column here.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Mumbai Attack Conviction

The Associated Press reports out of Mumbai,
"An Indian court on Monday convicted a Pakistani man of murder and waging war for his role in the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks that left 166 people dead in the heart of India's financial capital. Two Indians accused of helping plot the attacks were acquitted."
Mohammed Ajmal Kasab,

"the lone survivor of the attack's 10 gunmen, ... was convicted on nearly all the 86 charges against him, including murder and waging war against India. While an exact total of the convictions was not immediately available, the handful of acquittals appear to have been for relatively minor charges, such as forging an identification card. Sentencing is expected to be Tuesday. He faces a possible death sentence."

It's still hard for this Westerner to understand the motivation behind the attack. The New York Times has many, many articles and reports on the attacks. You can read the archive results, here.

Read the full report on 1010 WINS & AP.

Domestic Terror - a fortunate fizzle

I have no doubt he will be caught but I wonder if his motives will ever be fully understood. The "he" is the would-be murderer who loaded a SUV in New York City's famous Times Square with components of an home made bomb.Fortunately, the bomb did not properly detonate and a sharp-eyed citizen notified a police officer when he noticed smoke coming from the car.

According to Raymond W. Kelly, the New York City police commissioner, the materials found in the Nissan Pathfinder — gasoline, propane, firecrackers and simple alarm clocks — also included eight bags of a granular substance, later determined to be nonexplosive grade of fertilizer, inside a 55-inch-tall metal gun locker. Had it exploded, he said it “would have caused casualties, a significant fireball.”

So, how do you track down the culprit? Today "good old fashioned police work" also includes the review of surveillance video tapes of the Times Square area. One has already succeeded in identifying what the police call a "person of interest" who is seen stripping off a shirt near the scene of the crime.

Claims from one Taliban related group are already being dismissed out of hand.

Where's this going to lead? No one knows and no one is placing bets on any particular ideology or group. As for me, I say let's see what happens when they round up some suspects. And they will, I have no doubt about it, get to the bottom of this.

Read coverage in The New York Times.