Yesterday, 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed (KSM) was arraigned at Gitmo along with his four co-conspirators.

The team at This Ain’t Hell was there, in person, and liveblogged the entire trial beginning with this photo taken from the parking lot full of media:

This Ain’t Hell reports that KSM, whose appearance most remember as a man in a dissheveled white t-shirt, now wears a “long, flowing beard.” Lawyer Cheryl Bormann appeared in court completely covered in the traditional hijab and requested that other females present also be required to alter their dress “for fear [of the defendants] committing a sin under their faith.”

The AP reported that the men refused to take part in the proceedings, removing their earphones and “passing around copies of the Economist.” For the handful of 9/11 family members who given the opportunity to attend, the scene was extremely difficult to bear.

The Obama administration renewed plans to try the men at the U.S. base at Guantanamo Bay after a bid to try the men in New York City blocks from the trade center site faced political opposition. It adopted new rules with Congress that forbade testimony obtained through torture or cruel treatment, and officials now say that defendants could be tried as fairly here as in a civilian court.

The liveblog account of Saturday’s proceedings gives a [very candid] snapshot of just how the September 11 masterminds are being treated. It is helpful for its description not only of the legal ins and outs, but also of the tone, sights, and subtext of the Gitmo events.


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