Is former Stanford University scholar Rahinah Ibrahim connected to Malaysian jihadists, as the FBI once suggested, or is she the victim of misguided U.S. bureaucrats who erroneously placed her on a U.S. terror watchlist? Is she even on a watchlist at all?
Those are the lingering unanswered questions in the first-of-its kind federal trial challenging a traveler’s alleged placement on America’s notorious no-fly list. The 48-year-old Malaysian woman’s case against the U.S. government — in which she seeks solely to clear her name — is awaiting a judge’s verdict after a week of testimony, the bulk of it classified and given behind closed doors here in a San Francisco federal courtroom.
But underscoring the Kafkaesque flavor of the trial, there’s a real possibility the verdict itself will be kept a secret, even from Ibrahim.