American Morning

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November 19th, 2009
01:01 PM ET

We Listen – Your comments 11/19/2009

Editor's Note: Attorney General Eric Holder’s appearance on Wednesday before the Senate Judiciary Committee generated strong opinion and questions for Thursday’s "American Morning" audience. While the majority supported a trial in New York City at the federal court level, some wondered if alternative courts would be more appropriate.

  • Bill: I don’t believe the terrorist should be tried in NYC. Are we going to try every one we capture in the U.S. Why should the tax payers have to pay for this trial. We have been hurt enough already. Holder is an idiot.
  • Sue: Regarding trying terrorists in civilian court. I am a mental health professional and believe that trying the terrorists in New York would stimulate an adverse response for those who suffer from PTSD related to Twin Tower Attacks. No terrorist should be afforded the rights of an American to be tried by a jury of their peers. If that were the case you would have to round up peers (terrorists) in order for him to get a "fair" trial. Let the military handle this, they are much better equipped to do so!
  • Mark: Why can't we ask the World Court at the Hague to hold a trial for the terrorists? Do they do that anymore? Wasn't 9/11 a crime against all humanity?
  • David: If the trial of the sheik is done in either court system and he is found guilty with the death penalty, where would he be housed while all the appeals are used, which more than likely would take years? I also understand that the military has not executed anyone in years. So where is the justice?
  • Lee: Why is no one talking about the right of the terrorists to a speedy trial? I am sure any defense attorney will file a motion to dismiss based on the denial of a speedy trial. Why would that motion not succeed?

What is your opinion on where the trial of the accused 9/11 conspirators should be held?

Filed under: We Listen
November 19th, 2009
10:41 AM ET

Fourth American hiker: 'No warning signs'

It's been three months since three Americans – Shane Bauer, Sarah Shourd, and Josh Fattal – were arrested in Iran. They reportedly crossed an unmarked border while hiking in Northern Iraq and are being held in Tehran where government officials say they now face espionage charges.

The families say it was an innocent mistake and in his first television interview, Shon Meckfessel – the "fourth" hiker, who was not arrested – told CNN's Kiran Chetry what they were all doing there in the first place.

Related: Iran to charge 3 American hikers with espionage, says prosecutor

Filed under: Exclusive • Iran
November 19th, 2009
09:58 AM ET

Richardson: New path forged with N. Korea

President Obama returns to Washington today after a busy week in Asia. His final stop was South Korea where he announced plans to send an envoy to North Korea for direct talks on its nuclear weapons program.

New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson has experience negotiating with North Korea and has made numerous trips to the communist country. He spoke to John Roberts on CNN's "American Morning" Thursday.

Read more: Obama to send envoy to North Korea

Filed under: North Korea
November 19th, 2009
09:08 AM ET

Dr. Gupta answers your mammogram questions

The new guidelines on breast cancer screenings have left a lot of women upset and confused. But what do they really mean for you? CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta answers your questions.

Filed under: Dr. Gupta's Mailbag • Health
November 19th, 2009
06:00 AM ET

Is it weakness to try terrorists in civilian court?

By Carol Costello and Ronni Berke

Should alleged 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammed be tried in a civilian court?

He’s been linked to a virtual smorgasbord of terror crimes, among them: September 11th, the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, the 1995 attempted assassination of Pope John Paul II, and the gruesome killing of journalist Daniel Pearl.

Critics question the decision of Attorney General Eric Holder, saying it gives this “enemy combatant” the same rights as an American citizen. “This is a perversion of the justice system,” South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham said.

In a hearing Wednesday, lawmakers grilled Holder, questioning whether America is growing weak in the war on terror. “I suspect our enemies and friends must be wondering what's going on in our heads,” said Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama. Wondering, he said: “are they serious about this effort?”

Holder shot back: “We are at war and will use all tools … to win. We will not cower in the face of this enemy.”

But in a WNYC radio interview, former 9/11 Commission member, Republican Tom Kean, also expressed concern that Mohammed would use the trial as a platform to entice followers. “He wants to be Che Guevara ... I worry a little bit that we’re giving him that forum.”

Others say the American judicial system is best suited for such cases. “What would they prefer we do? Execute these people without a trial?” said Karen Greenberg, the executive director of NYU’s Center on Law & Security. Besides, she says, military commissions have had little success. Only three individuals have been tried in seven years – compared to more than 300 others prosecuted successfully in civilian courts.

Just Sayin’ – Is it weakness to try terrorists in civilian court?

Filed under: Just Sayin'