In accordance with President Obama’s recent executive order, Susan J. Crawford has dropped all charges against the Cole bomber Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri. The charges were dismissed without prejudice, meaning that they can be refiled later, and al-Nashiri will remain in prison until that time, but it remains a worrisome decision. Curiously, this creates a situation for which the Bush Administration was derided – holding prisoners without charges. As Obama seems to have realized, you can’t just let these people out on their own recognizance. Andrew McCarthy suggests he has heard that all commission charges may be similarly dropped – against both Cole and 9/11 planners..
Obama later met with families of USS Cole and 9/11 victims, who apparently left feeling more assured than they were going in. President Obama told them they would have a robust legal procedure up in a year that may remain entirely military in nature. The fact remains, though, that no such plan is in place, showing to me at least that Obama rushed to fulfill an ideological goal without any thought of what to do instead. That doesn’t inspire me with great confidence, but hopefully they will work something out that will insure that justice is served.