Former N.J. Gov. Thomas Kean opposes trial in N.Y.C. for alleged mastermind of 9/11 attacks
Former N.J. Gov. Thomas Kean opposes trial in N.Y.C. for alleged mastermind of 9/11 attacks By Brian Donohue/The Star-Ledger
November 17, 2009, 10:59AM
NEW YORK -- Thomas H. Kean, chairman of the commission that investigated the 9/11 terrorist attacks, today criticized the decision by the Obama administration to try the alleged mastermind of the attacks in federal court in New York.
In what he described as his first interview since the decision by United States Attorney General Eric Holder last week, Kean told WNYC radio he feared an open trial in Manhattan federal court would make the suspect, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed a "martyr" and "hero" among al Qaeda sympathizers around the world.
Thomas H. Kean, former New Jersey governor and chairman of the 9/11 Commission, and Co-Chair Lee H. Hamilton confer during a news conference in 2005 in Washington, D.C.
Kean's comments came in a radio interview with Brian Lehrer on WNYC.
Kean, a Republican who is also former governor of New Jersey, appeared on the program with fellow 9/11 commission member Richard Ben-Veniste, a Democrat.
Ben-Veniste took an opposing view of the decision, saying he thought a trial in civil court was appropriate and would demonstrate the power of the American justice system.