Investigating abuse claims that have been investigated and dismissed before – repeatedly.3:47 PM, Jul 13, 2010 • By THOMAS JOSCELYN
Last week, British Prime Minister David Cameron announced that his government has agreed to investigate torture allegations made by former Guantanamo detainees. The inquiry is expected to last one year. And, according to Cameron, it will look into claims that British officials knew of “improper treatment of detainees held by other countries in counterterrorism operations overseas, or were aware of improper treatment of detainees in operations in which the UK was involved.”
4:03 PM, Jul 12, 2010 • By JOHN ROSENTHAL
In an article in the Sunday edition of the German tabloid Bild, the head of the German police union, Rainer Wendt, slammed the German government’s decision to accept two Guantánamo detainees slated for transfer.
President Obama's own task force concluded that 95 percent of the Gitmo detainees had at least some connection to the terror network.10:55 AM, May 27, 2010 • By THOMAS JOSCELYN
On January 22, President Obama’s Guantanamo Review Task Force completed its final report, which outlined the administration’s plan for the remaining detainees held at Guantanamo. The Task Force was set up as part of the president’s effort to close Gitmo.
THE WEEKLY STANDARD has obtained a copy of the report, as well as Attorney General Eric Holder’s transmittal memorandum. As explained below, the Task Force concluded that 95 percent of the detainees held at Gitmo, as of January 2009, had at least some noteworthy connection to the terrorist network.
The most transparent administration in history withholds national security information.May 10, 2010, Vol. 15, No. 32 • By STEPHEN F. HAYES
8:35 AM, Mar 30, 2010 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
Just before Barack Obama's inauguration, CNN asked Americans: "do you think the U.S. should continue to operate this [detention] facility [at Guantanamo Bay] or do you think the U.S. should close this facility and transfer the prisoners to other facilities?"
The results: 51 percent favored closing Gitmo and 47 percent wanted to keep it open.
A new poll shows a huge shift: Only 39 percent favor closing Gitmo and 60 percent want to keep it open.
See the full results here.
6:10 PM, Mar 24, 2010 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
A young Marine officer writes in response to Tom Joscelyn and Bill Roggio's story:
“This Gitmo-detainee released to Afghanistan is infuriating...different in a way than the guys who go back to Yemen or Saudi to rejoin Al Qaeda after the bs Saudi rehab program. This guy is released into a warzone, where our soldiers and Marines are fighting, and where he can directly rejoin the enemy.”
6:57 PM, Mar 12, 2010 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
Attorney General Eric Holder didn’t tell the Senate Judiciary Committee about seven Supreme Court amicus briefs he prepared or supported, his office acknowledged in a letter Friday, including two urging the court to reject the Bush administration’s attempt to try Jose Padilla as an enemy combatant.
1:59 PM, Mar 11, 2010 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
Senator Jon Kyl (R-Ariz), tells the New York Times that Holder's explanation that he inadvertently failed to disclose the brief in support of Jose Padilla “strained credulity.”
“Are we expected to believe that then-nominee Holder, with only a handful of Supreme Court briefs to his name, forgot about his role in one of this country’s most publicized terrorism cases?” Mr. Kyl asked.
8:17 AM, Mar 10, 2010 • By THOMAS JOSCELYN
John Schwartz of the New York Times has published a piece on the reaction of some conservatives to an ad by Keep America Safe asking for the DOJ to identify government lawyers who previously represented or advocated on behalf of terrorists.
9:58 AM, Mar 9, 2010 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
I'm not a lawyer (though a few of my best friends are). But I gather there's an old legal dictum that goes: If you can't argue the facts, argue the law. If you can't argue the law, argue the facts. If you can't argue the law or the facts, blow smoke.
If you want to see some really high-class smoke being blown, it's worth taking a look at the recent statement signed by a bunch of Republican lawyers defending liberal lawyers now working at the Justice Department who'd previously represented or advocated for terrorist detainees. Nameless straw men (including me) and women (Liz Cheney) are subject to name-calling--"shameful," "unjust," and "destructive" appear in the first paragraph alone. In all three paragraphs of the lawyers' letter, highfalutin generalities are generally and highfalutinly invoked. The self-esteem and self-importance of lawyers are much in evidence. The only thing missing is an actual argument.
12:43 PM, Mar 8, 2010 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
Marc Thiessen writes at the Washington Post:
Would most Americans want to know if the Justice Department hired a bunch of mob lawyers and put them in charge of mob cases? Or a group of drug cartel lawyers and put them in charge of drug cases? Would they want their elected representatives to find out who these lawyers were, which mob bosses and drug lords they had worked for, and what roles they were now playing at the Justice Department? Of course they would -- and rightly so.
Yet U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder hired former al-Qaeda lawyers to serve in the Justice Department and resisted providing Congress this basic information. In November, Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee sent Holder a letter requesting that he identify officials who represented terrorists or worked for organizations advocating on their behalf, the cases and projects they worked on before coming to the Justice Department, the cases and projects they've worked on since joining the administration, and a list of officials who have recused themselves because of prior work on behalf of terrorist detainees.
Holder stonewalled for nearly three months. Finally, two weeks ago, he admitted that nine political appointees in the Justice Department had represented or advocated for terrorist detainees, but he failed to identify seven whose names were not publicly known or to directly answer other questions the senators posed. So Keep America Safe, a group headed by Liz Cheney, posted a Web ad demanding that Holder identify the "al-Qaeda seven," and a subsequent Fox News investigation unearthed the names. Only under this public pressure did the Justice Department confirm their identities -- but Holder still refuses to disclose their roles in detention policy.
Read the whole thing.
1:39 PM, Mar 5, 2010 • By DANIEL HALPER
With the arguments over detainees and their lawyers heating up, it's worth noting two past pieces by Keep America Safe's Debra Burlingame, both of which appeared in the Wall Street Journal.