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9.11 investigation

German Court Acquits Muslim of 911 Terror Connection

Now that it's officially known that the USA is a state which tortures witnesses to produce "confessions," other countries' justice systems now must impose stringent requirements on testimony produced by American authorities. Germany thus demonstrates that there is considerable resistance in the world to the United States of Al Qaeda. Will Germany be targetted for the next terror attack?
Germany to drop 9/11 plot charges

Evidence against only man jailed for terror attack 'weak'

David Rose in Hamburg
Sunday July 18, 2004
The Observer

German prosecutors are preparing to drop all the most serious charges against the only man convicted for the 11 September attacks, because they fear that crucial American evidence was obtained by torturing detainees.

The case is set to deepen further the rift between Germany and the United States, which accused the Germans of failing to act against terror when it first emerged three of the hijacking pilots had lived in Hamburg. 'No doubt they will complain bitterly,' a German anti-terrorist official said yesterday. 'Let us say we have different views on how to handle this problem.'


Mounir Motassadeq, 29, an alleged member of al-Qaeda's Hamburg cell based around hijack leader Mohamed Atta's apartment, admitted going to a training camp in Afghanistan, signing Atta's will and transferring thousands of dollars to accounts controlled by Ramzi Binalshibh, one of the plot's main planners.


But an appeals court quashed his original conviction and 15-year sentence last April on the ground that he should have had access to statements Binalshibh made to US interrogators after his capture in Pakistan.


Motassadeq claimed that Binalshibh's statements, which the Americans were refusing to make available, would have confirmed he knew nothing of the 9/11 conspiracy. The appeal judges said without testimony from Binalshibh or the plot's mastermind, Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, the case that Motassadeq was an active conspirator was weak. His retrial starts next month.


A senior German intelligence official told The Observer that, although the US Justice Department has now supplied the interrogation records, they would be virtually useless in their present state. 'They contain no details as to where Binalshibh and Mohamed were questioned, nor whether torture or other forms of force were used to make them talk,' he said. 'Their contents may be information and they may be disinformation.'


After the recent publication of photographs of Iraqi prisoners being tortured at Abu Ghraib, and the admission by the US administration that a range of coercive methods were authorised for inter rogators in the war on terror, a German court would need firm evidence that the statements were truly voluntary, the official went on.


He said the German authorities were now resigned to dropping the charge that Motassadeq was involved in 9/11, and would have to settle for trying to convict him of membership of a terrorist organisation, for which he is unlikely to be jailed for more than the two and a half years he served between his arrest and appeal.


Josef Graessle-Münscher, Motassadeq's lawyer, said that under German law techniques which have been authorised in Guantánamo Bay, such as sleep deprivation and psychological deception, would render any statements inadmissible.


However, Binalshibh and Mohammed are prisoners not of the military but of the CIA, at an undisclosed location. It has been widely reported that their techniques have been harsher and have included 'waterboarding' - covering a prisoner's face with towels and pouring on water until he believes he is about to drown.


'In Germany, any use of force to produce a statement is unlawful,' said Graessle-Münscher. 'After Abu Ghraib, if the Americans want to see Motassadeq convicted for 9/11 they are going to have to prove both Binalshibh and Mohammed are in good health, and that they say Motassadeq was a conspirator.'

 http://observer.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,6903,1263796,00.html

homepage: homepage: http://www.naicr.org

... 18.Jul.2004 10:30

this thing here

>A senior German intelligence official told The Observer that, although the US Justice Department has now supplied the interrogation records, they would be virtually useless in their present state. 'They contain no details as to where Binalshibh and Mohamed were questioned, nor whether torture or other forms of force were used to make them talk,' he said. 'Their contents may be information and they may be disinformation.'<

i find it very interesting that many if not most of the cases against terrorists held in custody which have NOT resulted in prosecution have occurred at the very same time as the bush admin. seeks to weaken the rights of the accused by the likes of the "enemy combatant" label, the PATRIOT ACT, indefinite detentions, government monitored sessions between lawyers and the accused, etc.

it was also reported a while back that a majority of those hudreds the justice dept. touted as being terrorists were in fact NOT terrorists, and the cases against them did not go to trial or were dropped completely.

given the dismal record of successful prosecutions against those accused of being terrorists, i would have to say that bringing to trial, and successfully prosecuting someone as engaging in terrorism is a very very difficult task for a government. and it is this difficulty which in my mind explains the bush admin.'s attempts to weaken the rights of the accused as much as possible, thereby making their job easier: by labelling them enemy combatants, by holding trials in military tribunals, and most aggregious of all, holding the accused indefinitely. using their logic, they do this to give themselves time to build cases against the accused. but there is no way, if those accused of a crime are still protected by the constitution, that the prosecution can have all the time in the world to come up with a case.

"hell, i don't know. we may need a year or two, maybe five or six years to come up with something. it all depends on what evidence the other cases stir up. of course, those trials are five years out as well." this is not what the notion of a speedy trial is all about.

so in a tough spot, this government has weakened the strongest obstacle in it's path, the rights of human beings. and it would be naive not to think going in to this that they KNEW it would be hard. and i think this also explains how quickly the PATRIOT ACT sprang up out of nowhere, and how desperately they wanted it passed. so desperate that, if you believe their story, some crazy random individual just happened to send weapons grade anthrax to opposition leaders at the exact same time the ACT was going to be reviewed and debated. they KNEW it was going to be hard, and so they wrote the act a long long time ago, in order to insure they would an advantage when the time came, when the stork delivered their "new pearl harbour" right on demand.

thanks! 18.Jul.2004 23:56

new american centurions (AP)

this thing here is very smart
and has good taste in art