Siddiqui’s defense team, funded in part by the Pakistani government, asserts that Lady al-Qaida is so mentally ga-ga that she should not be allowed to take the witness stand. Bleeding-heart human-rights groups have dutifully rallied around Siddiqui. She’s Mumia Abu-Jamal in a burqa. Indeed, her supporters have launched their own “Free Aafia” campaign. But two government-retained psychiatrists, working independently, determined last year that Siddiqui’s so-called symptoms of mental illness were attributed to “malingering” and “manipulation.” The judge in the case concluded that she is competent and understands full well the charges against her.
The Crazy Jihadi tactic is in perfect sync with the al-Qaida training manual advising its operatives to claim victimhood status if arrested and put on trial. This act is also in keeping with a long tradition of terror defendants invoking the insanity card -- from “20th hijacker” Zacarias Moussaoui (whose lawyers chalked up his mass-murdering ambitions to a traumatic childhood) to Fort Hood shooter Nidal Hasan (whose defense will undoubtedly play up his lonely bachelorhood).
To make matters worse, the New York Post reported this week that an “unidentified man in a white headdress” mouthed an obscenity at the Siddiqui trial and cocked his finger like a gun at two jurors. The jurors were let go; it remains unclear whether the thug in white headdress will be charged and what relation, if any, he has to Siddiqui.
Would you answer a jury summons knowing you could end up sitting in front of a jihadi sympathizer on the loose who is mentally painting a target on your forehead? And would you trust the White House ringmasters and Justice Department terror-coddlers to protect you from harm?
These suspects belong in controlled military tribunals, not federal courtrooms that are being turned into al-Qaida P.R. platforms. The O.J. Simpson spectacle of a smirking murder suspect, preening defense attorneys, a showboating judge and the judicial process run amok on cable TV 24/7 was bad enough. The 1993 World Trade Center bombing trial, which gave the bin Laden network a multimillion-dollar tax-subsidized legal team, free translation services, personal dry-cleaning services, race-baiting defense witnesses and access to information that was allegedly used by jihadists to evade surveillance, was even worse.
The specter of 10, 15, 20 Siddiqui-style courtroom carnivals -- at a cost of at least $1 billion to taxpayers -- threatens to throw our civilian court system into complete chaos. America can’t afford to clown around with national security.