Friday, December 4, 2009

Rep. Nadler, 9-11 Widows, Distinguished Military Leader Take Stand Supporting Federal Trials in NYC

/PRNewswire/ -- U.S. Representative Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Brigadier General (ret.) James P. Cullen and four 9/11 widows who were largely responsible for the establishment of the 9/11 Commission that examined the tragic events of that day say efforts to block federal trials for the men accused of plotting the attacks threaten national security and delay justice for thousands of victims' family members in New York and across the nation. The group will hold a conference call on Friday, Dec. 4 at 1 p.m. to discuss their concerns and urge that the facts be put before fear-mongering as the trials approach.

This conference call comes just one day before the 9/11 Never Forget Coalition plans to gather at the federal court house, a site that is within Rep. Nadler's New York City district, to protest the trials. Participants on the call say that coalition, which has close ties to Liz Cheney's Keep America Safe organization and was joined by ultra-conservative "Tea Baggers" during a press conference last week, does not speak for all elected officials, national security experts or 9/11 victims' family members - many of whom support Attorney General Eric Holder's decision to hold suspected 9/11 terrorists accountable in federal courts. They note that federal courts are the only venue that has successfully tried such cases and that bringing these common criminals before military commissions threatens soldiers overseas who face an enemy that uses "special courts" as a recruiting tool.

WHAT: Congressman, Retired General, 9/11 Widows Support Federal Trials in NYC

Say fear-mongering tactics threaten national security, justice for suspected terrorists

WHEN: Friday, December 4 at 1 p.m. EST

WHO: U.S. Representative Jerrold Nadler (D-NY)
Brigadier General (ret.) James P. Cullen
Lorie Van Auken, 9/11 Widow
Monica Gabrielle, 9/11 Widow

CALL INFO: 800-894-5910; Code: Human Rights First


U.S. Representative Jerrold Nadler represents New York's Eighth Congressional district. The Eighth, one of the most diverse districts in the nation, includes Manhattan's West Side below 89th Street, Lower Manhattan, and areas of Brooklyn including Borough Park, Coney Island, Brighton Beach, Sea Gate, Bay Ridge, and Bensonhurst. Congressman Nadler was first elected to the House of Representatives in 1992 after serving for 16 years in the New York State Assembly. He was re-elected to his seventh full term in 2004 with a resounding 80 percent of the vote. Throughout his career he has championed civil rights, civil liberties, efficient transportation, and a host of progressive issues such as access to health care, support for the arts and protection of the Social Security system. He is considered an unapologetic defender of those who might otherwise be forgotten by American law or the economy, and is respected specifically for his creative and pragmatic legislative approaches. Rep. Nadler is an Assistant Whip and a senior member of both the House Judiciary Committee and the House Transportation Committee.

Brigadier General (ret.) James P. Cullen is a retired Brigadier General in the United States Army Reserve Judge Advocate General's Corps and last served as the Chief Judge (IMA) of the U.S. Army Court of Criminal Appeals. He currently practices law in New York City. Cullen was among the military leaders who stood with President Obama in the Oval Office as he signed Executive Orders ending the use of torture and ordering the closure of the Guantanamo detention facility and joined dozens of military leaders urging Congress to stay the course toward closure of the U.S. detention facility at Guantanamo Bay and to see past the fear-mongering tactics designed to delay the Administration's efforts to close the facility and bring those held there to justice.

Lorie Van Auken knows first-hand why the federal trials in New York City are important to 9/11 widows. Van Auken, the mother of two, lost her husband Kenneth Van Auken in the September 11th terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. Lorie is one of the "Jersey Girls" who, along with Kristen Breitweiser, Mindy Kleinberg, and Patty Casazza, advocated for a commission to investigate the September 11 terrorist attacks.

Monica Gabrielle is a 9/11 widow who fought for the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) investigation into the collapse of the World Trade Center. She was also an advocate for the commission to investigate the September 11 terrorist attacks.

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