Wednesday, March 11, 2009

On Gitmo Graduates and Manifestos

Furthering the case for the necessity of Gitmo, five detainees held there have released a document in which they boast of their part in planning the 9/11 attacks.

The document is titled "The Islamic Response to the Government's Nine Accusations."

In it, the men refer to their participation in 9/11 as "a badge of honor."

When were they able to compose such a document, you ask? You might wonder how they could write this while held in a prison that its critics insist holds prisoners in solitary confinement or shackled to the floor 24/7. No, no. These guys are allowed communal visits with each other without the presence of lawyers. Plenty of opportunity to draft hate-documents and manifestos.

Couple that with the news that yet another Gitmo graduate is now back at work running with the Taliban in Afghanistan, and you've got to wonder why anyone would question the need for Gitmo in the first place.

It seems more than obvious to me that we need a detention facility such as this one, and one that has now been declared to pass all Geneva requirements and has been declared by the Obama administration to be quite professionally run.


Anonymous said...

You have to remember, this was under Bush's watch, and Bush's was the devil to these guys. Now Obama wants them out! help me remember uh Obama = Muslim Gitmo detainees = Muslim, see the connection here. Just another way of getting his pals out for a book deal if you ask me.

Anonymous said...

The argument against Gitmo is quite simple, its called due process and torture. Due process is an integral part of our justice system, and long ago our society established torture as an unacceptable practice.

As difficult as it may be at times, we cannot simply suspend the basis of our justice system whenever we deem it convenient. There's nothing in our constitution that says, "we hand out justice through due process, unless we REALLY don't like the offender." That's the whole heart of the matter. Nobody has ever claimed that the detainees are saints, safe to release, or even decent people. The fact of the matter is, whenever we capture a child rapist or mass murderer, we don't allow the cops or our citizens to kill the offender on the spot. Regardless of how heinous the crime, and regardless of how much we may hate the offender, as a society we trust our justice system to provide justice.

Also, as a country, we decided long ago that we do not torture. Now, you may not agree with that, but that's where you differ from the core values of our society. The Bush administration admitted to torturing some detainees in the attempt to punish and gain information. That doesn't change the fact that, as a country, we don't torture.

Morals and values sometimes do suck whenever they
prove inconvenient, but that's one thing that makes our country great, we aspire to a higher sense of morality and justice.

Please answer this question, if in fact you believe the detainees are not entitled to due process, and they are national security threats, would you be in favor of executing all of the gitmo detainees without trial? What is the purpose of wasting our resources to maintain a specialized prison to indefinitely house a singular group of guys? If the conservatives are so sure that these guys are being held lawfully, why not simply execute them without trial?

Pat said...

Dear Anonymous,
You might consider reading Col. Gordon Cucullu's book, "Inside Gitmo." It's very revealing. You might also review the Obama administration's findings that Gitmo meets all Geneva conventions and according to AG Holder, is run in a quite professional manner.

You might also consider reviewing the rules for dealing with enemy combatants. As a rule, they aren't American citizens and not actually entitled to American Constitutional rights.

You might also review the findings that it was in the early days of Gitmo, the detention facility that was hastily formed at Guantanamo Air Base in those hectic days right after 9/11, right after Islamic terrorists killed some 3000 Americans...that was when THREE (3) prisoners were tortured. Conditions rapidly improved and that has not been an issue since. In fact, the only torture going on down there is the torture the inmates inflict on our American military as they spit on them, hurl bodily fluids at them, threaten them, vow to kill their families, and smash their faces against the bars at every opportunity.

Maybe we can let them move in with you. You have such a kind, bleeding heart, they would probably be happy with you. Be sure you have a big screen tv, art classes, English lessons and 4000 calorie per day meals for them though, because that's what they are accustomed to at Gitmo. They are also accustomed to being provided with a copy of the Koran, untouched by vile American hands; you'll have to hire a Muslim fellow to come handle that for you. The oils, beads, and prayer rugs are a must as well.

Let me know how that works out for you.

Anonymous said...

Pat - Again, you've gotta read closer before firing off such emotional responses. I never said that Gitmo violated Geneva conventions nor did i say that it was run unprofessionally. I said, the entire argument for closing Gitmo revolves around due process and torture. Due process being the primary problem, as pointed out in my last paragraph. I didn't claim that these poor guys were being mistreated, blah, blah, blah. I claim that we have laws which protect us from violating our own ethics and morals when dealing with those who have committed crimes against society. It protects us from being barbaric when we most want to. Its what makes our society great.

I'll take the bleeding heart comment as a compliment. You act as if my belief in our justice system is equivalent to support for terrorists and any other violators. That's simply illogical. On the contrary, i simply have a faith in the way we as a country handle criminals. Countries all over the world torture, publicly behead, rape, intimidate, etc.etc. to enforce the will and laws of their respective society. I for one think that's the sign of a barbaric society. What do we do? We put you on trial, present a case, make a judgement and provide a sentence. I'm proud that we have civil laws for the way we deal with the most heinous of criminals (terrorists, rapists, murderers, financial frauds).

As i've stated previously, the creation of Gitmo was not an issue. The previous administration's inability or refusal to establish a process for dealing with captured accused terrorists in a constitutional manner was the problem. It doesn't mean giving non citizens the rights of citizens; non-citizens who violate our laws are provided due process everyday. It means requiring that our government follow its own constitution in dealing with ANY criminal.

This isn't a love or hate the terrorists argument, although most conservatives attempt to turn it into that, its a debate on how far we allow ourselves to bend our own laws of justice.