Tahawwur Rana held not guilty by US for 26/11 Mumbai attacks

Discussion in 'International Politics' started by ajtr, Jun 10, 2011.

  1. ajtr

    ajtr Veteran Member Veteran Member

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    Pakistani-Canadian convicted of terrorism, but cleared in Mumbai attacks
    COLIN FREEZE

    Globe and Mail Update
    Published Thursday, Jun. 09, 2011 6:04PM EDT
    Last updated Thursday, Jun. 09, 2011 6:42PM EDT

    A Chicago jury has found Pakistani-Canadian Tahawwur Rana guilty of aiding a terrorist plot to attack a Danish newspaper, but found he did not have a role in planning the 2008 Mumbai massacre.

    The trial has been closely watched because of allegations that agents in Pakistan's spy agency, the Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate, had worked with a terrorist group known as Lashkar-e-Taiba to plot the carnage of more than 160 people in India's largest city.

    The targets in India were scouted by David Headley, a Lashkar operative of mixed Pakistani and American heritage. Now a confessed terrorist, Mr. Headley testified in the hopes of minimizing his eventual sentence.

    Mr. Headley, a lifelong friend of Mr. Rana, told the jury his friend had a role in helping him scout out sites for attack in India and for a distinct, but never executed, plot in Denmark that targeted the Jyllands Posten, which published cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad in 2005.

    The jury, which delivered a verdict late Thursday, partly agreed with Mr. Headley's testimony.

    "A Federal Court jury has convicted defendant Tahawwur Rana on one count of conspiracy to provide material support to the Denmark terrorism plot and one count of providing material support to Lashkar-e-Taiba, " the U.S. Department of Justice said in a statement released shortly after the verdict.

    But it added Mr. Rana was "not guilty of conspiracy to provide material support to the Mumbai terrorist attacks in November 2008."

    The jurors, who were not identified in court, declined to talk to the media to explain their split verdict. Though the jury found him not guilty of the most serious accusation, Mr. Rana still faces up to 30 years in prison on the other two charges.

    “We're extremely disappointed. We think they got it wrong,” defence attorney Patrick Blegen told reporters.

    At the centre of the trial was testimony by the government's star witness, Mr. Headley, Mr. Rana's longtime friend who had previously pleaded guilty to laying the groundwork for the Mumbai attacks and helping plot the attack against the Danish paper. That attack was never carried out.

    Mr. Rana, who did not testify, was on trial for allegedly allowing Mr. Headley to open a branch of his Chicago-based immigration law services business in Mumbai as a cover story while Mr. Headley conducted surveillance ahead of the November, 2008, attacks. He was also accused of letting Mr. Headley travel as a representative of the company in Copenhagen.

    The trial was highly anticipated because of Mr. Headley's testimony. His five days on the stand provided a rare glimpse into the inner workings of Lashkar-e-Taiba, which took credit for the Mumbai attacks, and the alleged co-operation with Pakistan's ISI. The trial started just weeks after Navy SEALs found Osama bin Laden hiding outside Islamabad, raising concerns that Pakistan may have been protecting the world's most wanted terrorist.

    Pakistani officials have denied the allegations and maintained that they did not know about Mr. bin Laden or help plan the Mumbai attacks.

    During his testimony, Mr. Headley described how he said he took orders both from an ISI member known only as “Major Iqbal” and his Lashkar handler Sajid Mir. Through emails, recorded phone conversations and his testimony, he detailed how he met with both men — sometimes together — and then communicated all developments to Mr. Rana.

    Mr. Rana's defence attorneys spent much of the time trying to discredit Headley who they say duped his longtime friend. They attacked Headley's character saying how he initially lied to the FBI as he cooperated, lied to a judge and even lied to his own family. They claim he implicated Rana in the plot because he wanted to make a deal with prosecutors, something he'd learned after he became an informant for the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration after two heroin convictions.

    Mr. Headley's co-operation means he avoids the death penalty and extradition.

    After the verdict was read, one of Mr. Rana's attorneys approached his wife and said, “I'm sorry,” then huddled with her in conversation. A day earlier, Mr. Rana's wife, Samraz Rana, told The Associated Press that Mr. Headley and her husband were not as close as prosecutors had portrayed during the trial.

    While much of Mr. Headley's testimony had been heard before — both through the indictment and a report released by the Indian government last year — he did reveal a few new details. Among them was that another militant leader Ilyas Kashmiri, who U.S. officials believed to be al-Qaeda's military operations chief in Pakistan, had plotted to attack U.S. defence contractor Lockheed Martin. Mr. Kashmiri was reported killed on June 3 by U.S. drone attacks inside Pakistan. While U.S. officials haven't confirmed the death, Pakistani officials say they're certain Mr. Kashmiri is dead.
     
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  3. ajtr

    ajtr Veteran Member Veteran Member

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    this is another back stabbing of india by usa..india's future doesnt are not with usa but against it.india must see to it that it undermine usa interest everywhere.
     
  4. Phenom

    Phenom Regular Member

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    Well this is what happens if you rely on someone else to do your job. I hope atleast this serves as a wake up call to those Indians who think India should deal with Pakistan by putting pressure through the "world community".
     
  5. mayfair

    mayfair Elite Member Elite Member

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    American justice system is a joke and so is the Indian government.

    Chullu bhar paani mein doob maro aur choodiyan pehen lo.
     
  6. sob

    sob Moderator Moderator

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    The Americans only needed to convict him and expose the links of the ISI with Terrorist organisations. They have succeeded in their task. If we were wishing that they would be clearing our shit also then we are sadly mistaken. This has to be taken as a step forward, with data collected from the interrogation/confession.
     
    chex3009 likes this.
  7. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    No one is asking anyone to clear anyone's faeces.

    All one wants to see is that based on the facts of the case, justice being done.

    Now, do the facts indicate that he had no connection including as an instrument to the fact?
     
  8. mayfair

    mayfair Elite Member Elite Member

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    Saying Rana had no role in planning Mumbai massacre is like saying Osama Bin Laden had no role in planning 9/11, USS Cole, Embassy bombings etc.

    Bugger off ye slimy degenerate yanks.
     
  9. Blackwater

    Blackwater Veteran Member Veteran Member

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    Can't govt of India hire conman to kill Rana in USA ???????? end of story
     
  10. ajtr

    ajtr Veteran Member Veteran Member

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    Chicago jury plain stupid or complicit?

    June 12, 2011 7:57:31 PM

    Kanchan Gupta

    Few, if any at all, would remember Kawas Manekshaw Nanavati today. But in his time, the flamboyant Parsi, a Commander of the Indian Navy, was the toast of glittering parties in Bombay (as it was still known) and was warmly welcomed into the fashionable drawing rooms of Lutyens’ Delhi. While serving as Defence Attaché to VK Krishna Menon, who was then India’s High Commissioner to the UK, he met Jawaharlal Nehru and Mrs Indira Gandhi, and later came to be counted among the chosen few who could stroll into Teen Murti Bhawan. But life, as is often the case, is not always about wine and roses. While the dashing officer sailed forth on various missions, leaving behind his charming wife to look after their children, she busied herself with her lover, Prem Ahuja, a Sindhi businessman known for living the high life. When Nanavati came to know of the affair, he was sufficiently distraught to threaten his unfaithful wife that he would kill himself. Sylvia thought that would be a silly thing to do as he had done nothing wrong; so Nanavati went and shot his wife’s lover.

    In normal circumstances, this murder too would have been treated as just another crime of passion. But the circumstances were clearly not normal, not the least because of the dramatis personae involved. The media (there were no 24x7 television news channels then, but Russi Karanjia’s Blitz more than made up for their absence) went to town. Karanjia himself penned treacly stories to portray Nanavati as the ‘wronged husband’ and an upright officer, a man of middle-class principles who was ‘betrayed’ by his friend. As for Ahuja, issue after issue of Blitz made him out to be a sleazeball, a cad and a home-wrecker. Such was the outrage generated by this coverage that Town Hall meetings were called to rally support for Nanavati. Meanwhile, Blitz, which was then priced at 25 paise, sold for Rs 2 — in 1958-59, that was a princely sum. Not to be left behind, the Bombay film industry got into the act: RK Nayyar was first off the block with his Yeh Raaste Hain Pyar Ke, followed by Gulzar’s Achanak. Two books published around the time were runaway hits: Indra Sinha’s The Death of Mr Love and Nanavati ka Mukadama, a romanchak Hindi version of the events that led up to the crime and the trial that followed.

    These details by themselves are of no relevance today, but for the fact that they led to a profound change in our criminal justice system. Up until Nanavati’s trial, we too followed the Anglo-Saxon system of arriving at a ‘guilty’ or ‘not guilty’ verdict with the help of a jury while sentencing would be done by the presiding judge. In this particular case, the jury was clearly moved by the media coverage and the public show of solidarity for the ‘wronged’ husband avenging his humiliation, and gave a ‘not guilty’ verdict. The Bombay High Court later overturned that finding and sentenced Nanavati to life imprisonment, a judgement that was later upheld by the Supreme Court. That, in turn, added further proverbial fuel to the raging fire of public opinion; such was the tide of popular support for Nanavati that he was set free after three years. The Government of India was yet to become the cynical, indifferent entity it is today. Aghast at the turn of events, it decided to do away with jury trials to insulate the process of justice from human emotions and, as some would say, plain stupidity of men and women unable to comprehend the finer nuances of the case presented by the prosecution. So it was that Indian courts rid themselves of jurors, who were rarely, if ever, schooled in law and couldn’t distinguish between shades of grey, in 1960. Since then, judges have decided whether an accused is guilty or innocent.

    The reason I have recounted the story of Nanavati’s trial and how it led to the scrapping of jury trials in our country is to highlight the vagaries of a system that depends on the untested intelligence of randomly selected jurors. Those vagaries have once again been highlighted by the absurd verdict in the jury trial of the Pakistani Canadian terrorist, Tahawwur Hussain Rana, in a Chicago court. The jury has held him guilty of two of the three charges levelled against him on the basis of the same evidence, strangely absolving him of the most serious crime, that of his being involved in the November 26, 2008, attacks on multiple targets in Mumbai by Pakistani jihadis in an operation plotted by the ISI and executed by its pet terrorist organisation, the Lashkar-e-Tayyeba. The evidence in the case, largely based on the testimony of Pakistani American Daood Gilani, now known as David Coleman Headley, an American intelligence asset-turned-ISI/Lashkar operative who has struck a plea bargain to avoid the death sentence, as well as Rana’s own statements during interrogation and on affidavit, amply demonstrate that he was involved neck-deep in facilitating the mass murder.

    This is what the jury was told: Rana knew of the ISI-LeT plot to attack Mumbai; he knew of Headley’s links to the ISI and LeT; he was aware of Headley’s connection with Al Qaeda through Ilyas Kashmiri (recently killed in a US drone attack); despite that knowledge, he helped Headley to secure a multiple entry visa to scout for targets in India by giving him the cover of working as the agent of his ‘consultancy firm’, First World Immigration Services; he arranged local logistics for Headley, including his contact person, Bashir, in India; he and Headley discussed the outcome of the latter’s scouting visits to India in April 2008; he knew Sajid Mir, the LeT handler of the 10 jihadis involved in the attack; he was close to ‘Major Iqbal’, the ISI pointperson for this strike. Yet, the jury found it fit to absolve him of the charge of being involved in that ghastly bloodletting which left at least 166 people dead and scores maimed and scarred for life, while holding him guilty in the aborted attack on the offices of the Dutch newspaper Jyllands-Posteni that had published cartoons allegedly lampooning Prophet Mohammed, and of being involved with a ‘banned terrorist organisation, the LeT.

    There could be three reasons for the jury’s bizarre verdict. First, the finding reflects the average American’s indifference towards events in non-Western countries that do not impinge on their daily lives. Second, the jurors are plain stupid, unable to comprehend the intricacies of a terrorist plot of such proportions. Third, they were told to stand by god and America and do that which shall serve their national interest: Absolve Rana, and hence the ISI, of any involvement in 26/11 so that the US’s frontline ally, Pakistan, is not exposed for what it is: A terror-sponsoring state. This is important for another reason — to weaken the New York suit against the ISI and LeT which is directed against the Pakistani Army’s intelligence agency chief, Maj Gen Ahmed Shuja Pasha, and the chief terrorist of the LeT, Hafiz Mohammed Saeed. Lastly, it serves to send a not-so-subtle message to India: The US won’t punish Pakistan, no matter how horrendous its crimes against India. Yet we persist with the fiction that America is our friend and our Prime Minister singlemindedly pursues his single-point agenda of doing Washington’s bidding.

    Meanwhile,
    thankfully we didn’t have a jury sitting in on the trial of Kasab, the ‘Butcher of Mumbai’. Given the preponderance of libtards among the English-speaking classes and the proclivity of today’s media, especially, news channels, to glorify terrorists, it is more than likely that a jury would have given a ‘not guilty’ verdict, holding Kasab at best guilty of entering India without valid papers. That would have fetched him punishment meant for illegal immigration under the anodyne Foreigners Act.​


    -- Follow the writer on: Kanchan Gupta (KanchanGupta) on Twitter. Blog on this and other issues at Agent Provocateur. Write to him at [email protected]
     
  11. amitkriit

    amitkriit Senior Member Senior Member

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    Did Indian expect to get justice by piggybacking on USA? India knew from day one that this was the end result. After arm-twisting GOI against taking military route after 26/11, USA has been trying hard to turn the whole story in a way which suits it's interests. NIA did not get anything from David Headley or US authorities so far.

    I believe this is a complicity at the end of our government which has sent a signal that they can get away with this without any repercussions. Pakistan and USA have reached a secret deal on this issue. These trials are nothing more than US effort to bring the rebel servant called "Pakistan" on-line.
     

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