In Civilian Court, Terrorist Sentenced After 17 Months; At Guantanamo Tribunal, Still No Trials After 17 Years

Ahmad Rahimi appeared in New Jersey state court to be arraigned in 2016. Mike Segar/Reuters/NewscomTuesday saw two major developments in America’s efforts to prosecute accused terrorists. Between them, they undermine an argument about the alleged need to try terror suspects in military courts.

The first development was the sentencing of Ahmad Khan Rahimi, the so called “Chelsea Bomber,” who detonated three homemade bombs in New York and New Jersey in September 2016. A judge in the Federal District Court in Manhattan sentenced Rahimi to two life terms yesterday, just 17 months after Rahimi’s arrest. It’s hardly the first time our civilian courts have taken care of a terror case with such efficiency. “Shoe bomber” Richard Reid was sentenced in January 2003, just over two years after he was arrested. Sayfullo Habibullaevich Saipov, the ISIS-inspired Uzbek who allegedly drove a truck through a crowd of pedestrians in downtown Manhattan last Halloween,

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