and Again…Guantanamo

I’m keepin’ this one brief.

Now I’m seeing headlines about the pressure being on not to hold the detainee trials in New York City. Thank you! (sarcasm intended…) And I also recently read that approximately 50 detainees have been recommended by the Obama administration for indefinite detention at the big G., (for now anyway.) (Miami Herald)

What have some of us been saying all along?

Other state governors/officials don’t want those trials anywhere near them, either. New York ain’t the only one, folks…”But a growing number of lawmakers in the president’s own party say they would rather not have the proceedings in their states.” (USA Today) Rather what? That reads ‘not’, right? Two of those ‘rather not’ states are Pennsylvania and Virginia. The thumbs-down opposition list includes : Diane Feinstein, chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee,(Washington Independent) (courtesy of ProPublica), Virginia Senator Jim Webb, U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York, mayor of NYC Michael Bloomberg, U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter, Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell, “Even with any special funding, we’re still opposed to it,” {Alexandria, VA} city spokesman Tony Castrilli said. (Bear in mind, that ‘special funding’ amount would be $200 mil, nothing to sneeze at…but these people aren’t buying it)

As it turns out, in cases like these, trials can be held anywhere the hijackers traveled in the course of plotting the attacks. Cities such as Boston and San Diego fall into this category, and so does the state of Florida. Wonder how the good folks living in those areas will feel about it…




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uh, about Guantanamo…

(see previous post)

Well, maybe one more ‘political’-type post, before I return to my recent topics of slavery and/or Thomas Jefferson…I see now how this can become addictive…
John McCain was the first guest on Fox News Sunday w/Chris Wallace, a favorite political forum talk show of mine. (Chris Wallace is great, he doesn’t let his guest evade a question. His dogged pursuit of an answer, when necessary, without offending the person trying to sidestep an issue, really impresses me.) (btw, that is not John McCain in the picture w/Mr. Wallace.) Anyway, about the Senator …

I personally felt so encouraged, so confirmed even, to see the Senator sitting there with Chris. He seemed relaxed but clear on what he had to say. Not pushy, but a bit more definite-sounding than during the campaign, I thought. He was introduced as the man to whom President Obama would be turning for advice, as he tackles a main issue of new ways to handle our war on terrorism.

The closing of Guantanamo was addressed right off the bat. Senator McCain’s perspective has helped mine. Because Guantanamo Bay prison has become a symbol, in the worst sense, for America, resurrecting images of Abu Ghraib, McCain was in favor of the order to begin closing it down. This I understand. His objections to the decision included the timing of the announcement, or perhaps I should say, in the order of necessary events, it should’ve taken place further down the line. First it needs to be decided where then shall the prisoners be housed? What about future detainees yet to be apprehended? What if we catch bin Laden? Where will he be held? McCain feels that these other issues should’ve taken priority, both on the President’s schedule and when announced.

It was also mentioned that a previously-released prisoner has since either returned to, or joined al Qaeda as one of their leaders. (I didn’t catch the name, but a photo was shown.) This is not good.

Finally, concerning the torture question…while watching Meet the Press, I heard it mentioned that a sort of ‘back-door’ clause had left a loophole for a re-introduction of more hard line questioning of terrorism suspects, if it was deemed advisable. (I had read about this, but had also read that such clause should not be looked at as a ‘loophole’ – except, that, as I see it, it IS a loophole.) The phrase: “enhanced interrogation techniques”. One of the panel participants (again, didn’t catch the name, sorry) informed us that lawyers call this ‘purposeful ambiguity’. Meaning, the door to torture is not really closed.

To which I say, “Rock on!!” for ‘purposeful ambiguity’…

Guantanamo

My mushy, emotional Obama moment is over.

This is definitely not a political discussion-type blog, and it won’t be often that I post my opinion on current events, but today I am. I don’t have a mind for political/government etc. debate, I go on my instinct. I can’t prove a point in this arena, I don’t know enough. I get headaches trying to read and learn all the necessary facts. But I’ve been reading & getting headaches for the past two days, trying to understand, to comprehend the bigger picture behind President Obama’s signing of the order to close the Guantanamo prison within a year.

This detention center houses some major terror suspects, specifically five of whom are believed to have been involved in the planning of 9/11. The order includes shutting down secret CIA prisons, world-wide, where we held suspected terrorists. And it looks like what I call ‘soft-on-torture’ legislation is being officially adopted. Extremely soft.

For two or three days before the Inauguration, I was getting this sense of dread, this sick feeling that, once sworn in, we would begin to see a different Obama than the charismatic guy who campaigned. My fear specifically was…well, something just like this.

I really need to take time to read the Constitution through, because I don’t know how, or if, the Bush administration may have violated it, broken the law. But, you know, though it may be proven that such was the case, my position is, whatever it takes to prevent another 9/11…