Thursday, August 29, 2013

Obama's Not So Secret Plan to Close Gitmo

The Obama administration has faced criticism that they have no plan to close the Guantanamo Bay prison. President Barack Obama campaigned on closing the Guantanamo Bay detention center. Obama has been blocked by both parties in Congress from closing Gitmo.

Candidate Obama was asked on 60 Minutes if he would use the power of executive order to close Gitmo. Obama said yes. Obama has never been the wisest tactician. The Senate voted to block funding for transfers of Gitmo prisoners. The vote was held on May 20, 2009. Obama should have just moved the prisoners when he came into office.

The Obama administration's secret plan really isn't that secret. A two page memo really isn't much of a plan. It does cast a lot of blame on Congress. Much of that blame is deserved.

Prosecution and Detention. The U.S. Government will prosecute detainees in federal courts or military commission proceedings to the extent feasible and in the national security interest. The President has directed the Department of Defense to identify a site in the United States for military commission proceedings. But current law bars the transfer of detainees to the United States for any reason. As a result, the Government is prohibited from prosecuting any detainees in a military commission in the United States or in a federal court, even if it represents the best – or only – option for bringing a detainee to justice. This is true even though the Government has successfully prosecuted more than 490 terrorism-related cases in federal courts since 9/11. For those not prosecuted, the Administration will use the PRB process to regularly and carefully review the threat posed by detainees and, where appropriate, they will be designated for transfer.

The leaked secret plan. It really isn't a secret plan if the memo lists prisoner policies the Obama administration has been pushing for and that this secret plan was handed to the media by White House staffers.

White House Plan to Close Guantanamo

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