Glenn Greenwald over at Salon has the goods if your friends/family start in on moving the Gitmo prisoners to US soil and trying same in US courts.
- Both before and after 9/11, the U.S. has repeatedly and successfully tried alleged high-level Al Qaeda operatives and other accused Islamic Terrorists in our normal federal courts.
- Convicted Terrorists have been housed in U.S. prisons, inside the U.S., for years without a hint of a problem.
- The Guantanamo military commission system still has nothing to show for it[s efforts] other than a series of humiliating setbacks for the Government.
- As is true for virtually every fear-mongering claim made over the last eight years to frighten Americans into believing that they must vest the Government with vast and un-American powers lest they be slaughtered by the Terrorists, none of these claims is remotely rational and all of them are empirically disproven.
We won't. Ever again. Never.
Update: Boy, I wish I had said this! This is Cernig over at Crooks & Liars.
- I'd just like to point something out to the many rightwingers who are frothing at the mouth today over the NYT's story that a former Gitmo detainee has become the deputy leader of Al Qaeda's Yemeni branch.
- The Bush administration released this man in 2007, without trial -a decision made by political appointees, not judicial review - and handed him over to the Saudis who let him walk.
- So who is at fault here?
- Rather than blaming Obama for wanting to actually put bad guys on trial - proper trial - shouldn't these rightwing pundits be asking why the Bush administration made a political decision to let this guy go? Was there insufficient evidence? Was the evidence tainted by torture? Was he simply an innocent swept up by "arrest for bounty" tactics who became radicalized by his experience? What's the actual evidence for "suspecting" he has "returned" to terror?
- [In] one of my old posts on this subject the other day ... I wrote:
Some very bad people are likely to walk free along with the innocent because the Bush administration tried to walk around domestic and international principles of law, creating an entirely spurious new designation of “unlawful combatant” so that they could either hide detainees from due process indefinitely or, failing that, conduct kangaroo courts.
If they’d just stuck with the existing definitions, all the Gitmo detainees against whom they could build a real case under the actual rules of law, without torture and without rigging the courts, would have been tried...already. If found guilty, the death penalty would have been warranted in some cases. I would personally have had no problem with that.
- That's just the inevitable fallout from Bush's foolhardy actions. There's no real argument about it. But this instance is potentially even worse. If the Bush administration really thought this guy was dangerous and had real evidence to that effect, why did they make the political decision to turn him over to Bush's pals the Saudis instead of putting him on trial?
- Crossposted from Newshoggers
Update, Part 2: The Progress Report has given us the "Five Top Myths About Closing Guantanamo."
- One U.S. military officer wrote in the Washington Post that he "learned in Iraq that the No. 1 reason foreign fighters flocked there to fight were the abuses carried out at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo."
- MYTH #1 -- GUANTANAMO IS A GREAT PLACE TO BE
- MYTH #2 -- DETAINEES ARE TOO DANGEROUS TO BRING INTO THE UNITED STATES
- MYTH #3 -- DETAINEES WILL RECEIVE ALL THE BENEFITS OF U.S. CITIZENS
- MYTH #4 -- 61 RELEASED DETAINEES HAVE RETURNED TO THE BATTLEFIELD
- MYTH #5 -- WE SHOULD JUST HOUSE THE DETAINEES AT ALCATRAZ
We have to keep gently educating the Kool-aid drinkers. Remember, they vote, too. They need the facts not just the talking points.