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Some Animals Are More Equal.

Sulaiman Abu Ghaith  Bin Laden’s Son in Law  Charged in New York   NYTimes.comA US citizen, found to be engaged in terrorist activities overseas (or just having a quiet dinner) can be killed by a US drone strike.

On the other hand, a militant Islamist who runs al Qaeda gets a plane ticket to NYC, legal representation and all the comforts of the US legal system.

The appearance of Mr. Abu Ghaith before Judge Lewis A. Kaplan of United States District Court, in the cavernous, wood-paneled ceremonial courtroom in Lower Manhattan, just blocks from ground zero, the site of the Sept. 11 attack on the World Trade Center, was not without symbolism. But details of both the defendant’s role in Al Qaeda and his arrest remained unclear.

Not so much unclear as hidden.

As linked to by Powerline, Andrew McCarthy explains the details of the arrest in a column at the National Review Online’s The Corner:

Last month, Turkey found itself in custody of longtime al-Qaeda bigwig Sulaiman Abu Ghayth, the son-in-law of Osama bin Laden and described by the FBI as the terror network’s “consiglieri.” To satisfy its Islamist base, Erdogan’s government pretended to extradite the Muslim terrorist to his native Kuwait rather than cooperate with American agencies. But the Turks conveniently shipped Abu Ghayth to Kuwait by way of Jordan . . . where the U.S. has more open, effective counterterrorism cooperation and where our government was thus able to take Abu Ghayth into custody.

So, was this high-ranking member of the enemy forces shipped to Gitmo for long-term detention and interrogation in the hope of gleaning fresh intelligence? Of course not. Because Abu Ghayth was not detained at Gitmo, he was not subject to the statutory prohibition against using government funds to transfer enemy combatants into the U.S. So, while no one was paying attention, the administration whisked him into lower Manhattan, where his indictment in civilian court was promptly announced. He thus promptly received legal representation — so much for interrogation — and is enjoying all the protections of the Bill of Rights.

So why is it that a foreign national, an actual terrorist, gets more rights under US law than a US citizen?

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