The White House
September 6, 2006
Bringing Terrorists to Justice
Today, The President Announced That Khalid Sheikh Mohammed ("KSM"), Abu Zubaydah, Ramzi Bin Al Shibh, And 11 Other Terrorists In CIA Custody Have Been Transferred To The Custody Of The Department Of Defense, At The U.S. Naval Base At Guantanamo Bay. More information on the individuals transferred to Guantanamo is available at http://www.odni.gov/announcements/content/DetaineeBiographies.pdf.
These Men Have Provided Valuable Information That Has Saved Innocent Lives In The United States And Around The World. In addition to terrorists held at Guantanamo, a small number of suspected terrorist leaders and operatives captured during the war have been held and questioned outside the U.S., in a separate program operated by the CIA. The detainees recently transferred to the U.S. Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay were previously held and questioned by the CIA. The CIA program focused on a number of suspected terrorist leaders and operatives – dangerous men with unparalleled knowledge about terrorist networks and plans for new attacks.
The CIA Program Has Been, And Remains, One Of The Most Vital Tools In Our War Against The Terrorists. Questioning of detainees in the program has given us information that has saved innocent lives by helping us to stop new attacks in America and abroad.
Information From Detainees Questioned In This Program Has Helped Unravel Plots And Terrorist Cells
According To Our Intelligence Community, The Program Has Produced Information That Has Saved Lives. Some Examples Include The Following:
Suspected Terrorists In The CIA Program Have Provided Everything From Initial Leads To Photo Identifications To Precise Locations Of Where Terrorists Were Hiding – Helping Us Take Potential Mass Murderers Off The Streets Before They Were Able To Kill Or Kill Again. Detainees in this program have helped us identify individuals that al Qaida deemed suitable for Western operations, including terrorists sent to case targets inside the U.S. Detainees in this program have identified al Qaida travel routes and safe havens, and explained how al Qaida's senior leadership communicates with its operatives in Iraq. They have identified voices in recordings of intercepted calls and helped us understand the meaning of potentially critical terrorist communications.
Legislation Authorizing The Creation Of Military Commissions To Try These Suspected Terrorists For War Crimes
Today, The President Sent Legislation To Congress To Specifically Authorize The Creation Of Military Commissions To Try These Suspected Terrorists For War Crimes. The Bill ensures that these commissions are established in a way that protects our national security and ensures a full and fair trial for the accused. As soon as Congress acts to authorize the military commissions the President proposed, the men our intelligence officials believe orchestrated the deaths of nearly 3,000 Americans on September 11, 2001, can face justice. We will also seek to prosecute those believed to be responsible for the attack on the USS Cole – and an operative believed to be involved in the bombings of the American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.
The Legislation Also Includes Vital Provisions To Preserve Our Ability To Question Key Terrorist Leaders And Operatives. We will continue to hunt down terrorist leaders and operatives. And as more high-ranking terrorists are captured, the CIA program will be crucial to obtaining the life-saving information they can provide.
Passing This Legislation Is A Top Priority, And We Will Work With Congress To Act Quickly To Strengthen And Clarify Our Laws To Meet The Threats Of A New Era. We will ensure that the CIA program goes forward in a way that follows the law, meets the national security needs of our country, and protects the brave men and women we ask to obtain information that will save innocent lives.
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