Thursday, February 16, 2006

Some practicalities about closing Gitmo

A team of 5 UN human rights investigators called on the US to close Gitmo today. The 5 investigators have never visited the site because they want to interview the inmates and view the facilities without US personnel involvement. That was never going to happen.

I don't support a closing of Gitmo. It isn't practical. There are approximately 500 men in Gitmo now. Most of them are completely innocent and should never have been locked up. However, that doesn't mean EVERYONE is. There are bad guys there and they do want to kill Americans.

If America closes Gitmo now, what do you do with these individuals? Send them back to their home countries? Send them to Pakistan where anti-American feeling is running super high? These guys will never spend time in jail and will be free to plot additional attacks against Americans. How about Yemen? Where there was a jailbreak and high ranking Al-Qeada officials escaped? Maybe send them back to Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Syria or Jordan where the state regularly tortures individuals?

None of those are acceptable. The only true acceptable solution is for America to become more transparent, something this administration hates. For we know that light drives out darkness. If the evil and inhumane conditions that exist at Gitmo are to be changed, that base must be opened for inspection. It must release those prisoners known to be innocent. It must bring charges against those suspected of harboring hatred and evil toward America. The bar is set so low, that even a military tribunal would be acceptable so that important sources in the Muslim world need not be exposed.

We must have justice and exposing Gitmo to the light of the civilized world is the first step.