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Durbin: Dzhokhar Tsarnaev should not be tried in a military court

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WASHINGTON--Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said Sunday on NBC's "Meet the Press" Boston marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev should not be tried in a military court as an enemy combatant.

Durbin told host David Gregory that there are questions the FBI needs to answer regarding anything was missed when agents talked to Tsarnaev's older brother, Tamerlan --who died Thursday following a carjacking and a confrontation with police. The brothers mother told reporters FBI agents had interviewed Tamerlan.

Asked by Gregory, "Do you have questions about the FBI's tracking of the older suspect here who is now dead and whether something was missed," Durbin replied, " Of course I do.

"And I think we should ask those questions. That's our responsibility. But I listened to Mike Rogers and I thought he laid it out as a former FBI agent himself as to what we were faced with when we were asked these hard questions. We've got to make sure as well, let me add David, that we give to the intelligence and law enforcement agencies, federal, state, and local, the resources they need to keep America safe. We live in a dangerous world. We live also in a free and open society, which we value very much. In order to keep Americans safe at the marathon, at every other public event, we need to invest the resources that are necessary for law enforcement."

Some Senators have said Dzhokhar Tsarnaev should be treated an enemy combatant.

Gregory asked Durbin, "I want to make sure I nail you down on that point, you-- you oppose that?'

Said Durbin, "You bet. Well, let me just tell you, history tells us that we're doing the right thing. Hundreds-- literally hundreds of terrorists, those accused of terrorism, have been successfully prosecuted and imprisoned in the United States using the same process that's being used in this case in Boston. The handful, Liz Cheney and others, who are calling for military commissions, have to explain to us why in-- since 9/11 only six times have we used military commissions. I think we are approaching this in the right way following the law as we should. We are gathering the evidence, and I think at the end, the right decision is being made to pursue this."

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on April 21, 2013 12:31 PM.

Obama standing with Boston in weekly address.Video, transcript was the previous entry in this blog.

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