Tuesday, February 9, 2010

GITMO Isn't Closing. Obama Is No Different Then Bush. We Told Ya So.

The US Justice Department has determined that nearly 50 of the remaining 196 detainees at the military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba are to be held indefinitely, without charges or trial, according to a front-page article published Friday by the Washington Post.
The Post reports that the decision is the result of a case-by-case review of the remaining Guantanamo prisoners by a Justice Department-led task force set up by President Obama last year. The detainees have been held under barbaric conditions and subjected to torture, most of them languishing in the prison camp for eight years. The Post report cites unnamed administration officials, who spoke of the task force’s conclusions in advance of the public release of its report.
News of the decision came on the one-year anniversary of Obama’s signing of an executive order to close the infamous prison at Guantanamo. That pledge was announced with great fanfare on the second full day of the new administration as evidence that Obama would reverse the Bush administration’s legacy of criminality and contempt for democratic rights. It has not been carried out.
Instead, Obama is keeping Guantanamo going while he works to open a military prison on US soil, rightly called “Guantanamo North” by its critics, to which those detainees not repatriated to their home countries or to other countries are to be kept, either to be jailed indefinitely or tried before military tribunals. Others, newly captured in the so-called war against Al Qaeda, and other “extremists” are to be thrown into the new military prison, which the administration plans to set up in Thomson, Illinois.
These moves expose Obama’s pledge to close Guantanamo as an empty gesture, designed to refurbish the image of the United States around the world while his administration continues the police-state methods of Bush.
In holding prisoners indefinitely without trial, Obama is using the same legal pretext that was used by the Bush administration--the Authorization for Use of Military Force passed by Congress one week after the September 11, 2001 attacks. The administration maintains this position even in the face of a 2006 US Supreme Court ruling (Hamdan v. Rumsfeld) that there was nothing in the congressional authorization allowing the president to abrogate the constitutional right of due process.
The Center for Constitutional Rights, which has defended a number of the Guantanamo detainees, released a statement Thursday condemning the decision to hold prisoners under indefinite detention. "Today was supposed to be the deadline by which President Obama would close Guantánamo,” the Center declared. “Now it will be the anniversary of the president’s decision to abandon our most fundamental constitutional principles. Our nation was built on the idea that no president or king should have the power to imprison people solely at will… and that it is up to the courts to determine whether individuals have engaged in acts that justify depriving them of their liberty.

"Guantánamo remains open, and remains a symbol of lawlessness and abuse. Now the president has committed to holding approximately 50 men without any trial not as a result of anything the men have done in the past but because of a fear of what the men may do in the future and because they have been deemed too difficult to prosecute but too dangerous to release. This is… an assault on the rule of law, our principles and our system of justice.”
Anthony D. Romero, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union, said, “There is no statutory regime in America that allows us to hold people without charge or trial indefinitely.”
The government argues that it cannot try some of the Guantanamo detainees, even in military tribunals that deny defendants basic due process protections, because its “evidence” against them, either hearsay evidence extracted from other prisoners or direct admissions obtained through interrogation, is tainted by prisoner abuse. This is tantamount to an admission that they have been tortured. The additional reason given is that trying the detainees could compromise intelligence-gathering and national security.
There are other reasons. The government fears the political repercussions of testimony from defendants in open court about the torture to which they have been subjected, as well as the danger of defendants revealing information exposing connections between alleged terrorists and US intelligence and police agencies.
The task force that reviewed the Guantanamo cases is comprised of officials from the Pentagon, the State Department, the Homeland Security Department and the Justice Department, as well agencies such as the CIA and FBI. According to the Post, it recommended that the detainees be divided into three main groups: about 35 to be prosecuted in federal or military courts, at least 110 who can be released at some point, and the nearly 50 who are to be detained indefinitely without trial.
Of the 110 who are deemed eligible for release, 60 are Yemenis. Since Obama indefinitely suspended the transfer of Guantanamo prisoners to Yemen after the attempted Christmas Day airliner attack, these detainees have no prospect of release for the foreseeable future. That leaves only fifty whom the government is preparing to repatriate over the next few months.
Even their release is contingent on “variables,” an administration official told the Post, including “a changed security situation in a proposed transfer state.”
The administration claims that all of the detainees have the right to challenge their incarceration in habeas corpus proceedings in federal court. However, the US appeals court which has jurisdiction over all such cases, the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, earlier this month issued a sweeping ruling making it all but impossible for detainees being held as “alien unprivileged enemy belligerents” to prevail in such suits.
The appeals court upheld the Obama administration in opposing the release of Ghaleb Nassar al-Bihani, a Yemeni citizen who has been imprisoned at Guantanamo since early 2002. In its ruling, the court declared that presidential power to jail alleged terrorists is not limited by international law, and that Guantanamo detainees who seek to contest the legality of their incarceration are not entitled to the constitutional guarantees and legal norms afforded to defendants in criminal cases.
The focus of the government and the media on the remaining Guantanamo detainees obscures the fact that a far larger group of alleged “enemy belligerents” are being held without charge or trial, under, if anything, even more brutal conditions at the US military prison at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan. Last week, the Pentagon, in compliance with a Freedom of Information request filed by the American Civil Liberties Union, released a redacted list of 645 people being held at the prison.
A McClatchy newspapers investigative report revealed that many of the Bagram prisoners were civilians who were arrested based on false information.


  1. This boils my blood. He promised to close GITMO and now he isn't. I know a lot of supporters that will be pissed off to the hilt. This is all Obama's fault. I have been very protective of him but now he is gone too far. I can't even write right now.

  2. This poll blows your narrative out of the water.

    Poll: Bipartisanship popular, compromise tricky

    Americans spread the blame when it comes to the lack of cooperation in Washington, and, in a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, most want the two sides to keep working to pass comprehensive health-care reform.

    Nearly six in 10 in the new poll say the Republicans aren't doing enough to forge compromise with President Obama on important issues; more than four in 10 see Obama as doing too little to get GOP support. Among independents, 56 percent see the Republicans in Congress as too unbending and 50 percent say so of the president; 28 percent of independents say both sides are doing too little to find agreement.

    As party leaders tussle over the proposed bipartisan health care summit, nearly two-thirds of Americans say they want Congress to keep working to pass comprehensive health-care reform. Democrats overwhelmingly support continued action on this front, as do 56 percent of independents and 42 percent of Republicans.

  3. What does that have to do with Obama not closing GITMO?

  4. Becky, absolutely nothing, but that doesn't matter over here on Chris' blog anyway. So, I figured why not post it here. Hardly anyone here stays on topic anyway.

    I'm disappointed that Gitmo isn't closed yet also. This is something we can all agree on, but I never forget, Bush and Cheney are the ones that opened Gitmo in the first place, which was a massive mistake and they are the ones that approved torture, which I'm sure is part of the reason the 50 prisoners that are left are a problem, because much of the evidence against them was gained through torture, which is not admissible in a criminal court in the United States.

  5. Bruce, thanks for that link to the study. The comments there are priceless, I take it you didn't bother reading that far. Here, let me share a few with you. Keep in mind these are just the first few; they go on and on and on like this, it's hilarious:
    Why didn't the Dems pass all their bills when they controlled both Houses?? They didn't need the Republicans except to share the blame when American's would finally realize the stupidity of what the Dems wanted. Quit your whining. The campaign is over. Quit blaming everyone else for your lack of a spine.

    Posted by: egoetz1 | February 9, 2010 3:00 PM
    The people already lost everything, as Obama trys to grow Government.

    The people want an Obamaland NO CONFIDENCE depresssion . They are going on vacation and refuse to fund anything Obama at al et al.
    They refuse to keep business open and earnings happening to support Obama.

    To put the Country back into to productive, democrats must place Biden.


    Apparently, it is because Biden has a history the people can see. Biden brings a new cabinet abouve prison level.


    Posted by: dottydo | February 9, 2010 3:05 PM
    Liberals believe that Americans don't like the bill, but they want it passed.

    No wonder liberals are going down the toilet.

    Posted by: pkhenry | February 9, 2010 3:11 PM

  6. Another lie by Obummer, the G. Bay lie. That makes oh, just about everything Obummer has promised, broken.

    I like how the Obummer administration is now saying they are just doing everything Bush did. If the people wanted Bush they could have just voted McCain in, right? At least McCain would have cut the bloated government with a hatchet and not a little scalpel! BWAAAHAHAHAHA Instead we get a community organizer who just "dittos" everything Bush put in place. Does that make Obummer a war criminal too?

  7. The LIB Agenda is Going Poof and Administration KEEPS Throwing Gas on the Fire! They have Bungled their first 380 or SO Days In office and CANNOT Come UP with ANY Legislation EVEN Though ALL they Had to DO was Pass It! Weak Weak Weak! Your So Called Party of "NO" Did Nothing BUT Watch Most LIBS Feed on EACH other! Now Nobama Wants Bi-Partisian Ship,Its Amazing What Getting YOUR Buttock Kicked BY Voters Can Do! That Ole Change and Transparentsy DIED by The LIBS OWN Sword! Citizens Have SPOKE on Health Care and THEY Still DONT Get IT!
    Consevatives Would BE Wise to Let these LIBS Wallow in there OWN Manure! They Tried Governing Alone with NO Input From Republicans and Their Problem Now is They CANNOT Blame Bush, Who in the Hell Can they Blame,It Will Be FUN To WATCH!

    Bruce Hows that GITMO Thing Worken!

  8. Bruce blames Bush for Obama not closing Gitmo. HAHAHAHAHHAHA That one will never get old with the far left idealogues like Bruce. He has to stretch so far now to get them to work in his mind. It's like a carnival act. Bruce you can't believe the crap you are saying. There is no way anyone would believe that stuff. It is funny watching you try and sell it to us. Bruce you have no idea how many readers ball out laugh when they read your comments. Thanks for the laughs. Don't forget to post the pictures from the next anti war protest. Those make me spite out my coffee laughing.

  9. Obama has a solid history now of saying whatever is convenient for him at the time he says it. The Teflon man will not get away with it much longer.

    I am not sure if he is just stupid or is a pathological liar. Either way we know how to tell if he is lying...his lips are moving. brucie's hero.

  10. I busted my butt to get Obama elected. And now I look the fool with everyone. All I can say is sorry. My liberal friends are the most angry at what Obama isn't doing. I can't believe Bruce still hangs on like he does.

  11. This is what is on Bruces blog about Virg Bernero running for the governor. Jay-Ney said...
    "I like Virg Bernero. He is as Progressive as Grandholm. If we are going to keep moving forward in Mich. then we need a more Progressive Governor like Mr. Bernero. Don't you think?"

    February 9, 2010 1:38 PM

    Bruce Fealk said...
    "Jay-Ney, I like Virg from what I know of him up till this point. He does come across as a strong progressive."

    Can you believe these idiots? They think Grandholm was a great governor. Bruce please tell me you aren't getting high again.

  12. It's hard to believe what goes on in these progressives minds. Thanks for pointing that out for us Sue. It tells us volumes about the mind of a progressive. His newest post on his twisted blog is "Teabaggers are racist". How could anyone take him serious afer hearing all this and the fact that he would waterboard me and has no problem with the waterboarding of our soldiers. But he calls it torture when it's a terrorists getting waterboarded. That speaks volumes about the type of mind Bruce has. I would find it hard to believe that JoeC,vomamike or even Anon would think what is going on in your mind is even close to normal. But you still have your big boy,djpyg to have your back. He's all there too.lol

  13. You Go Progressives And Get Ole Virg as YOUR Canadate And Make SURE You Tell ALL Hes Like Granholm and Will Keep HER Great Ideas Going Forward in Michigan! Please Progressives LETS Get Moving.

  14. Yes, and how about the White House statement today saying all the criticism is encouraging the terrorists. Echoes of Bush...

    Does Obama have Halliburton stock in his portfolio?

  15. Uh, no...this isn't something we all agree on Brucie. Gitmo needs to remain open. Only you libs cry and whine over those poor little 'ole terrorists.

  16. I know I think Gitmo should stay open. I just like sticking their noses in it. The libs have got none of the "changes" they "hoped" for because the Democrats can't even get that done with the largest majority in decades. Just think how much blaming the Republicans they will do when it is the Republicans holding up their dumb ideas for change.

  17. In Bruces mind it is OK to torture me or a soldier but not a terrorist. Is that sick or what?

  18. Idea For Criminal Trials For These TERRORIST!

    I Say Have Them in Washington D C in The Capitol Building with ALL of the Elite 535 Politicans in Attendance Along with ALL Appointees! Most are Attorneys but I Bet Many Have Never Seen Court ROOM! We Have the Military There in Abundence and We Could Have the TSA Do Security! It Would Give the 535 Elite the BEST Photo OPS they would Ever GET!The Terrorist will GET to See the Target that THEY Missed Because of BRAVE American Citizens and MAYBE Just MAYBE the Politicans Will See there BRAVERY Also!

    Just a Idea BUT NO Worse than Ideas Administration HAS!

  19. Why don't we all go over to Bruces blog and post about it there.

  20. I Should Really Try and Find that Blog But Alas Pewter Sensitive Dont Have it! It would Be Interesting AND Scary but Would Be a Trip!


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