Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open court. The Congress shall have Power to declare the Punishment of Treason, but no Attainder of Treason shall work Corruption of Blood, or Forfeiture except during the Life of the Person attainted.-The Constitution of the United States Article III. Section 3. Clause 1.
First, he is an American citizen. He took the oath and we gave him his certificate of citizenship. That's that. He is entitled to all of the civil rights that anyone would be when accused of a heinous crime, including a lawyer and the right to a speedy trial before a jury.
With that out of the way the question has been much debated about what to charge him with and where to try him. There are a myriad of crimes he is alleged to have committed. But there is one charge that hasn't been mentioned that I think should get some serious consideration.
Why not charge him with treason?
Some uber-strict constructionists have attempted to argue that treason can only be charged if there is a formal state of war. But that is not the case. The very narrow constitutional definition refers to levying war against them (the United States), adhering to their enemies or providing them with aid and comfort. Surely Islamic terrorists are our enemies. And a formal declaration of war is not required to recognize that someone is levying war upon us. In any case Congress has passed resolutions that the courts have recognized as the functional equivalent to a war declaration. Further there have been instances of persons tried for treason for aiding and abetting insurrections which could not as a matter of international law involve a formal declaration of war.
I feel rather strongly that his case should include a charge of treason both as a matter of law and on principal. He came to this country as a refugee. We took him in, sheltered and educated him. Later he voluntarily took an oath of allegiance to our country. Then he allegedly goes and sets off bombs killing and maiming scores of people as part of a worldwide terrorist war against us.
If that's not treason we might as well just draw a line through that part of the Constitution.