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More proof of secret State Department negotiations came yesterday in the pages of the New York Post. Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) and an unnamed Obama administration source confirmed that the government is considering sending the mastermind behind the 1993 World Trade Center bombing back to Egypt where he is now a revered figure for attacking the U.S.
King, chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, sent a letter to Secretary of State Clinton and Attorney General Eric Holder demanding answers.
Releasing “Abdel-Rahman or any terrorist who plots to kill innocent Americans would be seen for what it is — a sign of weakness and lack of resolve by the United States and its President,” King wrote.
“While considerations regarding the blind sheikh’s release would be disturbing in any context, they are particularly alarming given recent events. The 11th anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks was marked by the assassination of America’s ambassador to Libya and an attack on the U.S. Embassy in Egypt. The violence in Egypt has been attributed, in part, to that government’s demands for the blind sheikh’s release.”
The letter was signed by other House leaders including Foreign Affairs Committee chairman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.), Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), and Armed Services Committee chairman Howard P. “Buck” McKeon (R-Calif.).
The new Muslim Brotherhood-backed president of Egypt, Mohamed Morsi, considers Abdel-Rahman to be a U.S. political prisoner, and has asked the Obama administration to release him. The Arabic language newspaper al-Arabiya reported more than six months ago that the Obama administration offered to send Abdel-Rahman to Egypt as part of a prisoner swap. Called the “Emir of Jihad” by some, Abdel-Rahman is a spiritual leader to al Qaeda and other militant Islamist groups.
Andrew McCarthy, who led the prosecution team that put Abdel-Rahman behind bars, is worried about the Obama administration’s intentions. “There’s no way to believe anything they say,” he said. “I believe there may already be a nod-and-wink agreement in place.”
On September 10, the day before terrorists assaulted the U.S. Embassy in Cairo and the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, Abdel-Rahman’s terrorist organization demanded the release of the Blind Sheikh and all detainees in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. His group, Jamaa Islamiya (also known as al-Gama’a al-Islamiyya or, in English, Islamic Group), works closely with al Qaeda, the group that ultimately succeeded in incinerating New York’s World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. At least two of the other groups that demanded Abdel-Rahman’s release — Islamic Jihad and the Sunni Group— also have al Qaeda ties.
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