That's fine with us. Although trials generally ought to be located where the crime occurred, there are plenty of reasons in this case to make an exception. The problem, however, is that President Obama's change of heart could embolden those in Congress who opposenot just a trial in New York but, more broadly, the president's determination to show the world that even accused terrorists will receive due process in this country. Obama must prevent his critics from exploiting the trial's relocation to try to dismantle his larger policy of bringing the war on terror under the rule of law.
Even before it was reported that Mohammed and the others might not be tried in Manhattan, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and several other Republican senators were savaging the Obama administration for treating Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, who allegedly tried to destroy an airliner on Christmas Day, "as a civilian defendant -- including advising him of a right in a civilian law enforcement context not to cooperate -- rather than as an intelligence resource to be thoroughly interrogated in order to obtain potentially life-saving information."