Guantánamo detainees say they planned September 11: report & excerpts
March 10, 2009
WASHINGTON (Reuters) — The five detainees at the U.S. Guantánamo Bay
prison camp charged with plotting the September 11 attacks have filed a document
expressing pride at their accomplishment and accepting responsibility for the
deaths of nearly 3,000 people, The New York Times reported on Monday.
The document, which the newspaper said may be released publicly on Tuesday,
describes the five men as the “9/11 Shura Council,” and says their
actions were an offering to God, according to excerpts of the document read
to a reporter by an unidentified government official, the report said.
“‘To us,’ the official read, ‘they are not accusations. To us they are
a badge of honor, which we carry with honor,'” the paper said.
The document is titled “The Islamic Response to the Government’s Nine
Accusations,” the military judge at the U.S. Naval base said in a separate
filing, obtained by the Times, that described the detainees’ document.
The document was filed on behalf of the five men, including Khalid Sheik Mohammed,
who has called himself the mastermind of the attacks.
Some of the men had said earlier that they planned the 2001 attacks and that
they wanted to be martyrs. The reason for the new filing, which the report said
reached the military court on March 5, was not clear. The brief court order
describing the filing said the men sought no legal action.
(Writing by Patricia Zengerle; editing by Mohammad Zargham)
Excerpts from the statement of five Sept. 11 defendants filed with
the Guantánamo war-crimes court.
By The Associated Press
March 10, 2009
With regards to these nine accusations that you are putting us on trial for;
to us, they are not accusations. To us they are badges of honor, which we carry
- Your intelligence apparatus, with all its abilities, human and logistical,
had failed to discover our military attack plans before the blessed 11 September
operation. They were unable to foil our attack. We ask, why then should you
blame us, holding us accountable and putting us on trial? Blame yourselves and
your failed intelligence apparatus and hold them accountable, not us.
- In fact, it was you who had wiped out two entire cities off the face
of the earth and killed roughly half a million people in a few minutes and caused
grave bodily harm by nuclear radiation? Did you forget about your nuclear bombs
in Hiroshima and Nagasaki?
- Also, you have violated all laws of war, and in particular, your treatment
of Prisoners of War, in Afghanistan and Iraq. We are the best example of such
violations and your “Black Sites” for torturing prisoners. This, and
with your “Abu-Ghurayb” prison in Iraq. Guantánamo camps are witness
to all of that.
- Remember, that you are the ones who attacked the Iranian civilian aircraft,
flight 655, in 1988 with your Cruise missiles over the Hermuz straights, killing
all of its 290 passengers, among them 66 children. They are still shedding tears
today over your victims. Does your blood have a value and the blood of Muslims
- So, our religion is a religion of fear and terror to the enemies of
God: the Jews, Christians, and pagans. With God’s wiling, we are terrorists
to the bone. So, many thanks to God.
- We have news for you, the news is: You will be greatly defeated in
Afghanistan and Iraq and that America will fall, politically, militarily, and
economically. Your end is very near and your fall will be just as the fall of
the towers on the blessed 9/11 day. We will raise from the ruins, God willing.
We will leave this imprisonment with our noses raised high in dignity, as the
lion emerges from his den. We shall pass over the blades of the sword into the
gates of heaven.