The Guantanamo detention facility has been a target of liberal Democrats almost since the facility opened in 2002. Barack Obama spent his entire presidency threatening to close it. But pushback from Republicans who objected to transferring the terrorists to prisons on American soil prevented him from carrying out his plan.
Now we have another liberal Democratic president and once again, the issue of Guantanamo is being discussed. Joe Biden appointed an anti-Gitmo defense secretary and the radical wing of his party is agitating to close it.
But it’s likely the same opposition Obama ran into will be solidly against the idea. Biden will try to finesse the problem as Washington politicians usually do. He will set up a commission to examine the problem, mandating a “robust review” of Guantanamo.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said it was the “intention” of the Biden administration to close the detention facility, something President Barack Obama pledged to do within a year shortly after he took office in January 2009.
Psaki gave no timeline, telling reporters that the formal review would be “robust” and would require the participation of officials from the Department of Defense, the Justice Department and other agencies who have not yet been appointed under the new administration.
“There are many players from different agencies who need to be part of this policy discussion about the steps forward,” she said.
It’s unknown whether Biden will allow states to refuse to have the terrorists in one of their prison facilities, which was a sticking point during the Obama administration.
Biden and the Democrats may wish to forget what happened on September 11, 2001, and dismiss the cold-blooded killers who planned and carried out the attacks as POWs. They have decided that the terrorism problem today is white supremacists who are a cuddly bunch compared to al-Qaeda terrorists.
White supremacists are not trained to resist interrogation. They are not superbly organized and fanatical enough to commit suicide in the cause of white supremacy. The terrorists are a special kind of indoctrinated human being who can’t be rehabilitated and will be a threat to America and its citizens till the day they die.
We are told that very few of the released Guantanamo inmates return to terrorism. I’m sure that’s very comforting to the widows and orphans of those killed by these released terrorists who might wonder what American genius allowed a terrorist safely locked away to walk free.
To some extent at least, that opposition remains. “The Democrats’ obsession with bringing terrorists into Americans’ backyards is bizarre, misguided, and dangerous,” Sen. John Cornyn, a Republican from Texas, said after the White House announcement Friday. “Just like with President Obama, Republicans will fight it tooth and nail.”
Obama argued that keeping the detention center was not just a bad policy but a waste of money, costing more than $445 million per year in 2016.
Under his administration, 197 were repatriated or resettled in other countries.
Forgotten in all this is the very real possibility that 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed will stand trial in an American courtroom. His defense attorneys will put America on trial and the rules of evidence may be so strict that KSM could walk out of the court a free man.
It may satisfy the need of many liberals to appear gracious and magnanimous toward our most bitter enemies. But it does nothing for our national security or any sense of proportional justice.