John BrennanAnother AYFKM? moment in our nation’s history. Deputy National Security Advisor John Brennan speaking about terrorists as criminals, and using plea agreements to obtain more information.

From RCP:

MR. GREGORY: Why isn’t he be treat–being treated as an enemy combatant instead of a criminal?

MR. BRENNAN: Well, because, first of all, we’re a country of laws, and what we’re going to do is to make sure that we treat each individual case appropriately. In the past Richard Reid, the former shoe bomber; Zacarias Moussaoui; Jose Padilla; Iyman Faris; all of them were charged in criminal court, were sentenced some in–in some cases to life imprisonment. We have these tools available, whether it’s an enemy combatant avenue or to charge them criminally. We look at the cases, and in this case we decided it was best, in fact, to charge him criminally.

MR. GREGORY: Would there be additional intelligence that could be gleaned by making him an enemy combatant? And do you believe that whatever you’re learning from him, was the Christmas Day plot part of something larger from al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula?

MR. BRENNAN: Well, first of all, we have different ways of obtaining information from individuals according to that criminal process. A lot of people, as they understand what they’re facing and their lawyers recognize that there is advantage to talking to us in terms of plea agreements, we’re going to pursue that. So–and we are continuing to look at ways that we can extract that information from him. (emphasis mine)

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