The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Donna Marsh O'Connor (315) 559-2183
Riptide Communications, Inc. (212) 260-5000

9/11 Families Call For AG Holder to Try KSM and Others Accused of 9/11 Crimes in Civilian Courts


November 11-Responding to news (WSJ) that Attorney General Holder is near to a decision regarding the form and venue of the upcoming trials of Khalid Sheik Mohammend and accused co-conspirators of 9/11 crimes, September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows released the following statement to AG Holder:

Attorney General Holder:

We, family members of those who died in the attacks of 9/11, entreat you to try Khalid Sheik Mohammed and his Guantanamo cohorts in federal courts that rely on the U.S. Constitution and the tenets of America's 200 year-old system of justice. The location is not of consequence, although New York, Virginia, or another venue in the East where most of the families reside, would be optimum.

The overarching consideration is that these self-confessed, accused detainees must be tried under well-tested and fair laws recognized by the world. Our American sensibility for justice and fairness must be demonstrated openly to our allies and our enemies. We must stand tall in rebuking those who accuse us of witch hunts. The American justice system works without resorting to newly-minted courts whose shaky underlying justification is scorned by most of the world as self-serving.

We are proud of our country and our justice system: we know you are too. Now please let us prove it to all.

Many of us met with you face-to-face on June 16, 2009 and you told us at that time of your personal commitment to bringing these trials to open, transparent courts. We urge you to stand firm.

September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows

September 11th Families for Peaceful Tomorrows was formed around the core
issue of civilian casualties: We did not then and we do not now condone the killing of civilians in other lands. Our organization was founded to oppose any action that would necessitate the deaths of civilians. Worse, still, is the denial of any value of these Iraqi lives, through the concealment of their very existence.

Peaceful Tomorrows is an organization founded by family members of those killed on September 11th who have united to turn our grief into action for peace. By developing and advocating nonviolent options and actions in the pursuit of justice, we hope to break the cycles of violence engendered by war and terrorism. Acknowledging our common experience with all people affected by violence throughout the world, we work to create a safer and more peaceful world for everyone.