Over the past few years, Islamic State operatives or sympathizers have carried out attacks on civilians around the world, and U.S. federal prosecutors have brought ISIS-related terrorism charges in 135 cases. This week, the Center on National Security at Fordham Law School released a report on those cases. Karen Greenberg, the center's director, joins Hari Sreenivasan for more on their findings.
KAREN GREENBERG JOINS AL JAZEERA TO DISCUSS MANCHESTER ATTACK
Karen Greenberg joins Al Jazeera to discuss the Manchester terror attack and British Prime Minister Theresa May's response to it.
KAREN JOINS AL JAZEERA TO DISCUSS SALLY YATES AND RUSSIA
Karen Greenberg joins Al Jazeera to discuss the Sally Yates U.S. Senate hearing on allegations about Michael Flynn's links with Russia.
"Bid to Strip Convicted Pakistani-American Militant's Citizenship May Mark New Trump Way" The Nation
“BID TO STRIP CONVICTED PAKISTANI-AMERICAN MILITANT’S CITIZENSHIP MAY MARK NEW TRUMP WAY” THE NATION
The Nation reports that the Department of Justice is seeking to revoke the citizenship of a naturalized citizen who is currently in prison for his role in a plot to destroy the Brooklyn Bridge. Karen Greenberg commented, noting that stripping citizenship, “adds to a trend since 9/11 of treating accused terrorists differently than other suspects” and that the same punishment cannot be applied to U.S. born citizens.
The Intercept examines the possibility of a terror attack on American soil being used as justification by the Trump administration to curtail civil liberties and immigration. If and when this occurs, Karen Greenberg notes that the judiciary will be a crucial part of the response and, “if you look at the immigration ban and some of the pushback from the courts on ISIS prosecutions and how they are being handled, the courts have woken up from their ‘I want to be asleep on national security’ stage. I think the courts may rise to the occasion.” Dr. Greenberg goes on to say that the press is instrumental and will, “need to be on the ground and report information before it is misrepresented.”
"As Trump Touts Guantánamo, U.S. Prosecutors in New York Notch Wins in Terror Trials" New York Law Journal
“AS TRUMP TOUTS GUANTÁNAMO, U.S. PROSECUTORS IN NEW YORK NOTCH WINS IN TERROR TRIALS” NEW YORK LAW JOURNAL
Tom Hayes reports on the recent trial and conviction of an al-Qaida operative. The trial continued the track record of convictions for federal prosecutors in New York. Karen Greenberg commented, noting that, "it's really the last gasp of the Obama administration to prove that even in a battlefield situation, the courts work well."
CNN reports that a recent assessment from the Department of Homeland Security found that foreign born extremists do not arrive in the U.S. radicalized but rather become radicalized after a few years here. This conclusion is aligned with independent research and counters Trump’s assertion most people convicted of terrorism in the U.S. are foreign born. Karen Greenberg said, "Trump's allegation that the 'vast majority of individuals convicted for terrorism-related offenses since 9/11 came here from outside our country' is inaccurate...for the ISIS-related cases -- which represent nearly 90% of today's terrorism cases -- only one-third of those convicted (and 42% of those charged with terrorism or killed during an attempted attack) were born outside the United States."
Karen Greenberg reflects on her optimism for Obama to have closed Guantánamo during his last 100 days in office as well as her disappointment that it remains open. She hopes that, “it will be closed because it’s the only right thing to do. Otherwise there will be another set of forever prisoners -- and I’m not thinking about the future terror suspects that Donald Trump will send there, presumably forever. I’m thinking about us. For as long as Gitmo remains open, whether we know it or not, we’re imprisoned there, too, and so is the American way of life.”
“FBI Undercover Stings Foil Terrorist Plots- But Often Plots of the Agency’s Own Making” The Kansas City Star
“FBI undercover stings foil terrorist plots- but often plots of the agency’s own making” The Kansas City Star
The Kansas City Star reports on the FBI’s undercover operations to find potential terrorists. A study from the Center on National Security at Fordham Law School found that of 126 Islamic State related cases since 2014, nearly two thirds involved a federal agent or an informant. Karen Greenberg said, “if you take away the undercover cases to see what are the real organized terrorism cases, we’re not seeing it. What do we have? The threat is different from what we’re being told.”
The Intercept reports that the FBI has been using a secret questionnaire and scoring system to determine the likelihood of individuals radicalizing and committing violence. The ramifications of the survey have been critiqued and discussed since the discovery. Karen Greenberg says, “set the civil liberties issues aside for a moment, and this says that we are grasping at straws to try to figure out what the factors involved in radicalization are. They are so individualized. How much will algorithms really tell us about the threat?”
Steve Inskeep interviews Karen Greenberg for NPR’s Morning Edition. A previous guest, Representative Mike Johnson, cited a report on ISIS related cases by the Center on National Security in defense of President Trump’s executive order on immigration. Greenberg explains that Johnson incorrectly cited the report she authored. She also says that Trump should focus on the majority of cases in the report which are American citizens, “focus at home, focus in a constructive way to help individuals find constructive lives here.”
“Media Reports Extensively on Terror-- When It Happens in the West” WNYC, The Takeaway
John Hockenberry interviews Karen Greenberg for The Takeaway podcast. They discuss Trump’s claim that the media does not cover terrorism cases. Greenberg says that the media does cover terrorism cases extensively but focuses far more on terrorism that occurs in the West. She also notes that violence in the United States is predominantly from sources other than terrorism.
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“SEAL, American Girl Die in First Trump-Era U.S. Military Raid” NBC News
Robert WIndrem, William M. Arkin, Courtney Kube, and Charlene Gubash write that during the first military raid carried out under President Donald Trump two Americans were killed, the 8-year-old daughter of Anwar al-Awlaki and a member of Seal Team 6. Karen Greenberg noted that, “intentional or not, the deaths of three al-Awlaki family members will enhance the al Qaeda narrative. The perception will be that it's not enough to kill al-Awlaki — that the U.S. had to kill the entire family.” The raid was intended to capture intelligence, particularly from computer equipment.
“What Does it Mean When the President Endorses Torture?” NBC News
NBC News reports on President Trump’s comments supportive of torture both on the campaign trail and as president. His remarks have concerned many with world leaders, military officials, and legal experts all expressing chagrin over his statements. Karen Greenberg said that Trump "has taken the veil off of this, as he has with so many things, [he] is not a president who is going to pretend we're going to do one thing and say another” and that his remarks show that he "is either not concerned about, or doesn't understand, issues of recriminations and the blowback that can occur with such policies."
“Episode 136: Karen Greenberg” Global Dispatches
Mark Goldberg interviews Karen Greenberg for the Global Dispatches podcast. They discuss why President Obama failed to close Guantanamo and what might happen to the prison under President Trump. They also discuss Greenberg’s work with Eastern European dissidents during the Soviet Era at the beginning of her career in foreign policy and how 9/11 was a significant turning point in her interest in national security.
"Karen Greenberg: Why Obama Won’t Succeed in Closing Guantanamo" Fordham Notes
On Nov. 14, President Obama admitted that closing Guantanamo before he leaves office is becoming a dimmer prospect with each passing week. Between congressional restrictions, and the “nature of the evidence” against those being held, Obama said that while numbers of detainees may still dwindle before Donald Trump takes office, a complete phase-out faces significant roadblocks. Fordham Law’s Karen Greenberg, director of the Center on National Securityand author of Rogue Justice: The Making of the Security State, believes the United States is unable to bring those accused to court because the trials would draw attention to the country’s ethical choice of torturing its prisoners. Greenberg said that if the trial against tortured Muslim expatriate John Walker Lindh had been brought to court in February of 2002, things may have been different.
"Trump and Guantanamo Bay: Why he may find it a headache" Middle East Eye
Guantanamo was a minor campaign issue and Trump has not discussed plans since winning the White House. Nevertheless, his campaign trail proclamations have been pored over for hints of a future policy direction. Trump’s call to “load it up” with new inmates and reintroduce waterboarding may be rhetorical. The US no longer has big ground operations overseas and the chance of it playing gaoler to large numbers of Islamic State (IS) militants is slim. Karen Greenberg said that any bid to transfer any American charged with “terrorism” to Gitmo would be a worrisome departure from the fair trial rights enjoyed by US citizens. Trump ranks among the right-wingers who are “into the symbolism” of Gitmo, she added. “It’s symbolic and it’s kept open as a reminder to the world that the US will go outside the law to address the war on terror, and many think that’s a good message to send. Ultimately, I think it’s a self-defeating message,” Greenberg added.