Tags: Barack Obama | War on Terrorism | guantanamo | bay | detention | close

Wash. Examiner's York: Will Obama Defy Congress on Gitmo?

By    |   Monday, 22 Dec 2014 10:33 PM

President Barack Obama is again talking about closing the U.S. terrorist detention facility at Guantanamo Bay Cuba, which currently houses 132 jihadists captured during the war on terror. He may be setting the stage for "an ugly and protracted fight between the president and lawmakers of both parties," writes Byron York of the Washington Examiner.

"But it's also possible Obama will avoid a conflict and simply use his executive authority to release a prisoner here, a prisoner there, until Guantanamo is very nearly empty — all done without any meaningful debate."

Since 2010, U.S. law has barred the president from spending any funds to transfer inmates to the United States or to close Guantanamo Bay.

That prohibition remains in force. The so-called "Cromnibus" spending bill just passed by Congress and signed into law by President Obama bars spending for any transfers to the United States or housing Guantanamo prisoners in this country.

However, Congress has not barred Obama from transferring Guantanamo prisoners to other countries, and he has thus far released 96 prisoners and is getting ready to let out more of the 132 remaining prisoners.

But Obama faces "an essentially unsolvable problem," York writes: of the 132, there is a "hard core" of about 40 and 50 who because of the nature of their terrorist activity and imprisonment will never be charged with crimes, put on trial, or released.

But Obama "appears to believe there is some magic way to being them into the United States, put them in the civilian justice system, and never grant them the basic constitutional rights of charge and trial."

No such solution actually exists. That's why bipartisan majorities of Congress have said time and again that it "if such detentions have to exist – and they do, for this small group – it just so happens there is a prison at an American facility in Cuba that is perfect for the job," York contends.

Obama is not going to find a way to imprison these 40 or 50 terrorists inside the United States without trial or charge "consistent with our values," he writes.

That's why York concludes that "the best way to deal with these cases is to keep them in Guantanamo until they die."

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President Barack Obama is again talking about closing the U.S. terrorist detention facility at Guantanamo Bay Cuba, which currently houses 132 jihadists captured during the war on terror. He may be...
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2014-33-22
Monday, 22 Dec 2014 10:33 PM
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