GUANTANAMO BAY NAVAL BASE, Cuba —
The five detainees arraigned Thursday in connection with the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks on America face the death penalty if convicted at their war-crimes trial. Each is charged with conspiracy as well as murder in violation of the law of war, attacking civilians, attacking civilian objects, intentionally causing serious bodily injury, destruction of property in violation of the law of war, terrorism and providing material support for terrorism:
— Khalid Sheikh Mohammed boasted that he proposed the attacks to Osama bin Laden as early as 1996, and that the al-Qaida leader approved and funded the operation, which included training hijackers in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Born in Pakistan’s Baluchistan province and raised in Kuwait, Mohammed graduated from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University in 1986, and converses easily in English. He was captured near Islamabad, Pakistan, in March 2003 by Pakistani and CIA officers.
— Waleed bin Attash, a Yemeni better known as Khallad, allegedly ran an al-Qaida training camp in Logar, Afghanistan, where two of the 19 Sept. 11 hijackers were trained. Bin Attash is believed to have been bin Laden’s bodyguard. Authorities say bin Laden selected him as a Sept. 11 hijacker but he couldn’t join the others because he was briefly detained in Yemen in early 2001.
— Ramzi Binalshibh, a Yemeni, allegedly helped the hijackers enter the United States and find flight schools, and helped with the operation’s financing. Allegedly selected as the “20th hijacker,” he made a “martyr video” in preparation for the operation, but was unable to get a U.S. visa and could not enter the United States. He also allegedly led a foiled plot to crash aircraft into London’s Heathrow Airport. He was captured in September 2002 at a house in Karachi, Pakistan, after a shootout.
Sept. 11 Trial — Ali Abd al-Aziz Ali, also known as Ammar Al-Baluchi, allegedly sent about US$120,000 to the hijackers for their expenses and flight training, and helped nine of them travel to the United States. He allegedly served as a key lieutenant to Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in Pakistan. He was born in Baluchistan and raised in Kuwait.
— Mustafa Ahmad al-Hawsawi, a Saudi, allegedly helped the hijackers with money, western clothing, traveler’s checks and credit cards. Al-Hawsawi, who was captured in Pakistan in 2003, also answered questions that helped the defense of Zacarias Moussaoui, who once claimed to be part of the 9/11 plot. Al-Hawsawi said he had seen Moussaoui at an al-Qaida guesthouse in Kandahar, Afghanistan, in the first half of 2001, but was never introduced to him nor conducted operations with him.
Four of the five — Mohammed, bin Attash, Binalshibh and Aziz Ali — are also charged specifically with hijacking the jets that hit the World Trade Center towers in New York, the Pentagon, and a field in western Pennsylvania.
Khalid Sheikh Mohammed has made it known that he wants the death penalty. I’d give it to him alright, but it would be slow, painful, and agonizing. Along with the others, that son of a bitch needs to be chopped up in little pieces (alive) and flushed down a toilet along with pig parts and a copy of the Koran.
Where he’s going there won’t be 72 virgins.