Americans who have supported our war-fighters in Iraq and Afghanistan will be infuriated at what they learn in today’s Wall Street Journal column co-authored by my Heritage colleague Charles Stimson and David Rivkin. It looks like the Obama administration is going to let a brutal Hezbollah terrorist go free without ever even trying him for killing Americans and helping the Iranians train and arm the Iraqi insurgency.
Ali Musa Daqduq specifically planned and orchestrated the killing of five American soldiers, including four who were kidnapped, tortured, and then executed. Daqduq is the last detainee held by American forces inIraq, and if he is not brought to Guantanamo before our forces leave, he will have to be turned over to the Iraqis.
There is no doubt that the Iraqis will promptly turn him over toIran, which has been demanding his release. InTehran, he will be greeted with ticker tape parades or whatever the Iraqi Republican Guard equivalent is (shredded American flags perhaps?).
But, as Stimson and Rivkin point out, doing the right and honorable thing in this case would upset the President’s political base, since it would be inconsistent with his unwise and never fulfilled 2008 campaign promise to close down the needed detention facilities at Guantanamo. As the authors say, “allowing [Daqduq] to go unpunished is both inexcusable and dangerous.”
As Commander in Chief, the President has a fundamental obligation to protect our men and women in uniform. Releasing their murderer—unpunished and with an express ticket to a terror-sponsoring state—is no way to fulfill that obligation.