Following weeks of strong bipartisan criticism of their handling of terror trials and detainees, Attorney General Eric Holder released a letter yesterday defending the Obama administration’s criminal justice system approach to prosecuting the war against al-Qaeda. Defending his administration’s handling of the Flight 253 terrorist, Holder wrote: “I made the decision to charge Mr. Abdulmutallab with federal crimes, and to seek his detention in connection with those charges, wtih the knowledge of, and with no objection from, all other relevant departments of the government.”
First, this statement directly contradicts the sworn Congressional testimony of Director of National Intelligence Adm. Dennis Blair who, when asked by Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) under oath if he had been consulted about how Abdulmutallab should have been interrogated, responded: “I was not consulted.” Under intense political pressure from the White House, Blair has since said his remarks were “misconstrued.” But his politically-pressured retraction was not made under oath. His initial statement was. At the very minimum, Congress must demand that both Holder and Blair testify under oath to settle this contradiction.