Wednesday, April 14, 2004

And Another Thing About This Ricin Guy...

The federal complaint doesn't indicate that Alberg had a set plan to release the ricin, and an FBI spokeswoman said no one was at risk. [U.S. Attorney's spokesman] Lincoln declined to speculate whether Alberg has terrorist ties.
Vague statements of terroristic intent (""It's now exciting working with poisons perhaps I'll find a way to end all life on Earth through some interesting items."), with no defined plan for carrying out a specific attack. Who does that remind me of?

...Oh yeah. Jose Padilla.
Within hours of Ashcroft's announcement, administration officials were pointing out that Padilla had no radioactive material or any other bomb-making equipment. Nor had he chosen a target, or formulated a plan. And while his connections with al-Qaeda operatives were never in doubt, he suddenly began to look a lot more like the accused shoe-bomber Richard Reid (i.e. another disaffected ex-con from the West desperate to get in with al-Qaeda) than like the sophisticated professionals who put together September 11.
Padilla, as we all know, is still being held without charges or trial, although the Supreme Court may be changing that any day now.

Okay, so Padilla had actually made contact with al-Qaeda. But he didn't actually have any weapons of mass destruction, whereas this Robert Alberg did. How come Padilla gets indefinite imprisonment without trial or benefit of legal counsel, and Alberg gets nice, aboveboard, by-the-rules legal proceedings? How come the government has to prove its case against Alberg, but not against Padilla?

My guess: it's not what you know - or what weapons of mass destruction you have - but who you know.

(I'm waiting for Mona Charen to write about how morally bankrupt conservative family cultures inevitably produce people like Robert Alberg. Think I should hold my breath?)