Attorney General Michael Mukasey is defending the use of military commissions to prosecute suspected terrorists. He says the upcoming trials will be "in the best traditions of the American legal system."

Mukasey's remarks at a conference Wednesday of Washington federal judges come amid fresh criticism of the legal process at Guantanamo Bay. The Pentagon this week defended its decision to remove a judge from a case after he issued rulings unfavorable to the government.

The attorney general says the decision to try terrorism cases outside of civilian courts is not made lightly.

"Our nation and our Constitution are never put in a more flattering light than when we prosecute in federal court those who have sworn to kill us," Mukasey said.