Adam Gadahn Arrested! – or not

Breaking news, American born AQ member Adam Gadahn caught:

KARACHI, Pakistan – The American-born spokesman for al-Qaida has been arrested by Pakistani intelligence officers in the southern city of Karachi, two officers and a government official said Sunday as video emerged of him urging U.S. Muslims to attack their own country.

The arrest of Adam Gadahn is a major victory in the U.S.-led battle against al-Qaida and will be taken as a sign that Pakistan, criticized in the past for being an untrustworthy ally, is cooperating more fully with Washington. It follows the recent detentions of several Afghan Taliban commanders in Karachi, including the movement’s No. 2 commander.

This is a major victory on top of the string of successful strikes and arrests of AQ and Taliban leaders in Pakistan. The real question we’ll start asking is, since he at least was an American citizen, how he will be treated? POW, enemy combatant, criminal? This debate is going to be started all over again. Considering we’ve intentionally targeted him with UAV strikes in the past, my assumption is he will not be treated as an American citizen, especially since he has publicly renounced his citizenship which makes him legally stateless.

Apparently not. Seems nobody is sure at the moment.

About Chirol

Sir Ignatius Valentine Chirol (1852 - 1929) was a journalist, prolific author, world historian, and British diplomat. He began his career as a foreign correspondent and later became editor of the London Times. After two decades as a journalist he joined Her Majesty's Foreign Ministry as a diplomat and was subsequently knighted for his distinguished service as a foreign affairs advisor. Additionally, he wrote a dozen books on foreign affairs including The Far Eastern Question (1896), Serbia and the Serbs (1914), The End of the Ottoman Empire (1920) and The Egyptian Problem (1921). He is generally credited with popularizing "Middle East" in reference to the Arabian Peninsula with his book The Middle Eastern Question (1903). "Chirol" is a US citizen and graduate student studying Defense and Strategic Studies and government contractor. As with the historical Chirol, he has traveled to over two dozen countries and lived abroad for many years. Chirol speaks English and German fluently with basic knowledge of manyl of others.
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8 Responses to Adam Gadahn Arrested! – or not

  1. He was charged with treason in 2006 so I’d wager he’ll see a day in court under that charge.

  2. Joe Jones says:

    Public renunciation of citizenship is not inherently valid. You usually have to fill out paperwork at a diplomatic outpost before loss of citizenship is complete.

  3. Chirol says:

    Joe: That may be, but I wonder how publicly destroying your passport and renouncing your citizenship, all on an al-Qaeda video fails to qualify. Then again, if he didn’t do it the proper bureaucratic way. . .

    I also assume that he’ll be transferred to US custody.

  4. Well now we’re hearing from Pakistan that it wasn’t Azzam but another Taliban leader.

  5. kushibo says:

    In Orange County, we take our homegrown terrorists seriously, and the Orange County Register was saying from the get-go that this was unconfirmed.

    Gotta say, that’s one hardcore Islamist sect if it can convert even Jewish kids to it.

  6. Joe Jones says:

    Chirol: Straight dope from the State Department.

    They deliberately make it very hard to lose US citizenship–partly in order to stop tax dodgers (the US taxes citizens on worldwide income even if they reside overseas) and partly to prevent people from losing their citizenship through fraud or duress.

  7. Curzon says:

    This should have been the first comment but it got rejected, but here was what I wrote minutes after your post:

    I’m sure he’ll be in a US court soon enough — plenty of tax protesters rip up their passports but that’s not an effective renunciation, which must be done at a US embassy or consulate overseas and there must be a good reason, such as acquiring another passport that prohibits dual nationality. Also, keep in mind that treason is one of those few federal crimes outside murder for which you can be executed.

  8. Carl says:

    I’d wager the probability of him being executed by drone-delivered Hellfire is significantly higher than lethal injection.