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Walker arrives in U.S. to face trial

Taliban American John Walker  


Taliban American fighter John Walker is scheduled to be in federal court Thursday morning to hear the charges against him, including conspiring to kill other Americans.


Walker, shaven and shackled, arrived from Afghanistan aboard a U.S. military cargo plane at Washington Dulles International Airport in Virginia late Wednesday. (Full story)

Walker was one of about 80 Taliban fighters who survived a bloody uprising among Taliban prisoners near Mazar-e Sharif in northern Afghanistan.

He has allegedly admitted he was told four months before the September 11 terrorist attacks that Osama bin Laden had sent people to the United States on suicide missions.

Walker is charged with two counts of providing material support or resources to terrorist organizations, including al Qaeda; one count of conspiracy to kill U.S. nationals abroad; and one count of engaging in transactions with the Taliban, the ousted regime in Afghanistan.

If convicted of the charges, Walker could face life imprisonment.

His parents received a letter from Walker expressing gratitude for getting legal representation, an attorney representing the family said Wednesday.

  •  Summary

  •  Update

  •  Key questions

  •  Who's who

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What did Walker say during an interview after the uprising? (Click here for information)

Why is Walker's father seeking mercy for his son? (Click here for information)

Read the charges against Walker (Click here for information)

Do the remaining Taliban and al Qaeda fighters in Afghanistan still pose a threat?

How long will the U.S.-led military campaign in Afghanistan last?

What is the goal of the U.S. campaign in Afghanistan? What is the key to the mission's success?


George W. Bush: U.S. president

Hamid Karzai: A Pashtun tribal leader and the chairman of Afghanistan's interim government.

Osama bin Laden: A wealthy Saudi expatriate living in Afghanistan who U.S. authorities cite as one of the primary suspects in masterminding the attacks.

Condoleezza Rice: U.S. national security adviser.

Colin Powell: U.S. secretary of state. A former Army general, Powell also served as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during the 1991 Persian Gulf War.

Gen. Richard B. Myers: Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Gen. Tommy Franks: Head of U.S. Central Command.

Donald Rumsfeld: U.S. secretary of defense.

The Taliban: A group of Islamic fundamentalists, mainly from Afghanistan's Pashtun ethnic group, which is the country's largest ethnic group. The Taliban that gained control of most of the country by 1997 and instituted an extreme form of Islamic law.

Northern Alliance: A group of former mujahedeen fighters, mainly from minority ethnic groups that oppose the Taliban.

George Robertson: NATO secretary-general and former British defense minister.

George Tenet: CIA director


The United States will try John Walker in a federal court on charges that could put him behind bars for life if he is convicted.

Meanwhile, the Bush administration is pondering whether the 158 Afghan war detainees being held at the U.S. naval base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, will face civilian court or military tribunals, or be held indefinitely.




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