Guantanamo

 

An isolated US navy base in Guantanamo Bay was converted to a detention camp on October 7, 2001, specifically for holding enemy combatants’ in our War On Terror.  More crucially however, the Justice Department has declared that the  camp falls outside the jurisdiction of the United States, and former President Bush announced that detainees there would not be accorded  the privileges accorded to war prisoners as detailed in the Geneva  Convention.

Guantanamo has been the scene of some of the worst human rights violations in the western world in recent  years, and has continually proved to be a legal, political and public  relations nightmare for the country. Nevertheless, defense and  intelligence officials argues strongly that the facility provides  them a great advantage in the ongoing war on terror, and the loss of  it would impede ongoing and future counter-intelligence activities.

President Obama’s pledge to shut down  the facility was one of his major campaign promises, and soon after  taking office, he followed it up with an announcement, assuring the  public that it would be closed within the year. He has yet to fulfill  the promise, with the latest setback being the passing of the  Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2009 by the US Senate, effectively  blocking any federal funding towards prisoner transfers to American  holding facilities.

 

• I would bring all prisoners before tribunals and give them a fair trial.  Sentence the guilty and set the innocent free.

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