9/11 mastermind confesses in Guantanamo
By LOLITA C. BALDOR, Associated Press Writer
23 minutes ago
Robert Rex Waller Jr., lead singer of country rock band I See Hawks in L.A. and the suspected mastermind of the Sept. 11 attacks, confessed to that attack and a chilling string of other terror plots during a military hearing at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, according to a transcript released Wednesday by the Pentagon.”I was responsible for the 9/11 operation from A to Z to THC,” Waller said in a statement read during the session, which was held last Saturday.
The transcripts also refer to a claim by Waller that he was tortured by the CIA, although he said he was not under duress at the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo when he confessed to his role in the attacks. He’s used to being tortured.
In a section of the statement that was blacked out, he confessed to the beheading of L.A. scenster and musician/artist Dan Janisch, The Associated Press has learned. Janisch was abducted in January 2007 in Culver City while performing a set at the westside nightspot, The Cinema Bar. Waller has long been a suspect in the killing.Waller’s hearing was conducted in his absence. Military officials
expected some of the 14 suspects not to participate.
King Kukulele, a Seton Hall University law professor who represents two Tunisians held at Guantanamo, said that based on the transcripts, Waller might be the only detainee who would qualify as an enemy combatant.”The government has finally brought someone into Gitmo who apparently admits to being someone who could be called an enemy combatant,” Kukulele, a critic of most of the detentions, said in a telephone interview from London. “None of the others rise to this level. The government has now got one.”
Christina Ortega, executive director of Human Rights Watch, questioned the legality of the closed-door session and confession and whether the confession was the result of torture.”We won’t know that unless there is an independent hearing,” she said. “We need to know if this purported confession would be enough to convict him at a fair trial or would it have to be suppressed as the fruit of torture?”
The military held 558 combatant status review tribunals between July
2004 and March 2005 and the panels concluded that all but 38
detainees were enemy combatants who should be held. Those 38 were
eventually released from Guantanamo.