It was inevitable, but even so, it comes as a bit of a surprise.
I posted way back on November 11 that if Obama closed Gitmo, we'd need another Gitmo to hold dangerous guys who no American President or Congress is about to turn loose.
I was off a bit, since at the time, I figured Obama would come up with some new tribunal system to try key detainees in the U.S., in effect, creating a new Gitmo. As it turns out, he and Democrats in Congress have just decided to keep the old one!
First, Obama announced that he is reviving the Military Commissions he placed on hold when he become President, with a few added due process protections for the detainees. And now, Senate Democrats have decided not to provide the funds to implement Obama's plan, whatever it might be, to close Gitmo:
And in a further break with Obama, the Senate's top Democrat said he opposes transferring any Guantanamo prisoners to the United States for their trials or to serve their sentences. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates has said 50 to 100 Guantanamo detainees may be transferred to U.S. facilities.
"I can't make it any more clear," Reid said. "We will never allow terrorists to be released in the United States."
Amen to that, Harry.
Reid and company claim they are just holding back on the funding needed to close Gitmo until Obama shows them an "acceptable" plan. But since no one wants to do anything that could result in releasing any of detainees into the U.S. and other countries have so far refused to take all but a handful of the more than 200 remaining, Obama will have to be a magician to devise a plan that Congress accepts.
So that leaves us with at least many detainees to be held at Gitmo and tried at Gitmo before the Military Commissions proposed by Bush and established by Congress several years ago.
Any thoughts? Post a comment.