kahlidmuhammad1 Khalid Shiekh Mohammed, the alleged mastermind behind the September 11 terrorist attacks on the Twin Towers and the Pentagon, will be going to trial in New York. Virginia (home of the Pentagon) was competing with New York over who will decide the fate of this senior al Qaeda leader, but decided on a joint effort in a New York based courtroom. With President Obama’s decision to close down the Guantanamo Bay prison, all the terrorist suspects held at Guantanamo Bay prison will get criminal trials in state courts instead of military commissions.

Khalid Shiekh Mohammed’s formal charges will not be announced for a couple of weeks, but Mr. Mohammed did claim that he was the one responsible for the terrorist attacks and was the head of the operation. However, he also accused the the U.S. of torturing him for their use of admitted harsh tactics, including water boarding, a technique intended to simulate drowning. Will this affect Mohammed’s trial? We will see once formal charges are made against Mohammed.

(Via WSJ)

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Sept 11 AnniversaryProbably the biggest tragedy in U.S. history, everyone remembers where they were on September 11th, 2001.

I remember visiting the World Trade Center in 5th grade on a family trip from Boston. It was one of the biggest buildings I’d ever seen, and I practically had to bend backwards to see the entire building. I jumped on the elevator to the top, which took much longer than any other elevator and made everyone’s ears pop.  Once I reached the top, I remember stepping out on the deck to huge gusts of winds and the best view that Manhattan had to offer. 5 years later I would have never imagined sitting in math class and hearing that a plane had hit one of the towers. Panic, loss, and sadness. How could such powerful and grandiose buildings fall so easily?

Today, the scene is much different. In the center of Lower Manhattan’s hustling and established Financial District, lies an empty void marked by construction cranes and dirt. 8 years later, the site looks very much similar to the days after the event. The air is heavy and sad.

Today is a somber day in New York City, both in weather and tone, as the nation and world remember the tragic events that took place on that fateful day. Thousands gathered this morning at the site of the World Trade Center to hear the victims’ names read aloud and to listen to words of remembrance. Never forgotten, both New York City and the world are standing behind the victims, the FDNY, the NYPD, and the countless volunteers who contributed hours, time, and their lives on that fated day.

(Via USA Today)

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