Thursday, May 04, 2006

Big Talker 

President Bush on the Moussaoui verdict, May 3, 2006:
The end of this trial represents the end of this case, but not an end to the fight against terror. The enemy that struck our shores on September 11th is still active, and remains determined to kill Americans. We will stay on the offensive against the terrorists. We will end their ability to plot and plan. We will deny them safe haven and the ability to gain weapons of mass murder. In these four and a half years, with good allies at our side, the United States has killed or captured many terrorists, shut down training camps, broken up terror cells in our own country, and removed regimes that sponsored terror. We have many dedicated men and women fully engaged in this fight - in the military, intelligence, and homeland security; law enforcement personnel; and federal investigators and prosecutors who gather the evidence, make the case, and ensure that justice is done. They are doing superb work every day to remove this danger and to protect our country.

We have had many victories, yet there is much left to do, and I will not relent in this struggle for the freedom and security of the American people. And we can be confident. Our cause is right, and the outcome is certain: Justice will be served. Evil will not have the final say. This great Nation will prevail.
CNN News on the Moussaoui verdict, May 3, 2006:
Moussaoui, 37, a Frenchman of Moroccan heritage, is the first person convicted in the United States for his role in the attacks.
UPDATE: The always-enlightening Dahlia Lithwick of Slate on the significance of the verdict:
This case was about a conspiracy, about some factual connection, however attenuated, between Zacarias Moussaoui's jihadi heart and the events of 9/11. And although the government has steadfastly stood by its legal claim that it was enough for Moussaoui to have wanted to be on those planes on 9/11, enough for him to have delighted as those planes went down, the jurors recognized this afternoon that a conspiracy to aid in a terror plot requires more than just a bad heart, and more than mere willingness to participate in the next one.

This decision, which will doubtless bring with it some serious national fallout, is more subtle, and more courageous, than the prosecution itself. Acting as a check on a runaway state, these jurors refused to allow a government needing a scapegoat and a man wishing for martyrdom to stand in the way of the facts. These jurors understood that for this country to kill a terrorist for his ideas, hopes, and dreams is not much different than the terrorist's desire to come here and kill us for ours.

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