Residents in the area of where the trial will be held have been demonstrating against the move. They have made it clear that the disruption caused by the enormous security measures and fear of retaliation in the area, will make life for local New Yorkers miserable. Merchants have also offered their protestations to the trial of foreign terrorist being held in their backyard. They claim that the massive security operation will create unbearable congestion and disruption that will disrupt and in some cases, shut down local commerce. Streets will be closed and stores, stores will be empty and small business owners will suffer yet again because of terrorism.
After detailed assessments of what the cost New York will be forced to cover because of the President’s decision to not try the 9/11 Five in a military court . Mayor Bloomberg out the price tag at a minimum of $1 billion dollars.
Between the heavy price tag and the chorus of cries from the New Yorkers who will be most affected by the President’s decision, the Mayor concluded that he hopes Attorney General Holder and President Obama “change their mind”. But Bloomberg is not concerned with the unseemliness of trying foreign, enemy combatants in a civilian court. His concern is the cost. And it is not an unreasonable for a City going through tough economic times. Bloomberg suggests that decision makers move the trial from the Daniel Patrick Moynihan Federal Court house to a military base or possibly even West Point. He adds that such a location might be inconvenient for jurors to get to, but the traffic in New York City will be so tied up in knots because of the trial that getting the downtown Daniel Patrick Moynihan Federal Court will also be inconvenient.
Although Bloomberg’s wish that the powers that be conduct the civilian trial on a military installation is only based on financial concerns, others are concerned with the elevated threat that the trial will attract. Many also wonder how enemy combatants who have not been read their Miranda rights can actually be tried in a court with the standards for a proper trial has not been met. Without having their rights read to them when they were captured on fields of battle, there exists a strong case for having charges dropped .
If the President does not reverse his decision and change not just the location of the terrorist trial but the its jurisdiction from a civilian to a military court, than not only will there be an unnecessary severe inconvenience to New Yorkers along with a an unnecessary disruption to commerce but there will be an unnecessarily heightened risk to New Yorkers in addition to a ton of loopholes that could allow these terrorists to walk if the rules of a civilian court are applied to foreign enemies of the state who are captured by non-civilian American forces on the field of battle.
I have stated before that the timing of this civilian trial for enemy combatants that should be tried in a military tribunal will be a major factor in President Obama’s reelection loss in 2012. But that is the least of our concerns, just ask New Yorkers and mayor Bloomberg.