- I am overjoyed to finally see the judiciary step up to the plate in defending the rights of the accused. According to MSNBC, U.S. District Judge Gladys Kessler has ruled that the government has 15 days to reveal the names of those detained in the investigation of the 9-11 attacks, subject to a few narrow conditions:
- 1. If the detainee is a material witness to a terror investigation
2. If the detainee requested it.
She also said that the names of the attorneys representing those individuals must be released as well. (Click here to find the case in PDF format on the website of the US District Court for D.C.)
What happens next should be interesting. Presumably, AG Ashcroft (past readers of this blog will know how low of an opinion I have of this man) will appeal to the Supremes. If they don’t cave into fear, I think they will rule in the detainees favor. But if this happens, will the Justice & Defense departments comply with the ruling? I don’t know. I personally think this could turn into a genuine constitutional crisis.
No matter what though, I am so proud that Judge Kessler is doing the right thing here. Maybe her ruling will be shot down, but I am just very thankful that at least one judge had the guts to stand up for the rights of criminal defendants, even when it is extremely unpopular to do so.