7:48 AM, Nov 19, 2015 • By DANIEL HALPER
After meeting with Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau, President Barack Obama reiterated his vow to close Guantanamo. The president said that he could Americans safe and release the terrorists held there.
Via the pool report:
[Obama]said that the rhetoric around Guantanamo “alienates Muslim-Americans” in the same way that the rhetoric around refugees does, and said the detention center “has been an enormous recruitment tool for organizations like ISIL.”
“We can keep the American people safe while shutting down that operation.” The population has been “reduced drastically,” with the bulk of transfers happening in the Bush administration.
“We have reduced that population further, and I expect that early by next year we may even have fewer than a hundred people at Guantanamo.”
“We are going to go through, meticulously, with Congress, what our optionsare, why we think this should be closed. I guarantee you there will be strong resistance. Because in the aftermath of Paris, I think that there is just a very strong tendency for us to get worked up around issues that don’t actually make us safer but make for good political soundbites, whether it’s refugees or Guantanamo, those are handy answer, particularly for folks who aren’t interested in engaging in a more serious debate about how we invest in the long, hard slog of dealing with terrorism.”
He again made reference to an AUMF, saying it was easier to talk about Guantanamo than to do the hard work to pass one.
8:11 AM, Jun 30, 2015 • By JERYL BIER
Although President Obama has not yet fulfilled his promise to close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, the population there is gradually shrinking as detainees are repatriated or released into the custody of foreign governments.
12:18 PM, Jan 25, 2015 • By DANIEL HALPER
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel says it won't be easy to close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay. The outgoing Pentagon chief made the comments to NPR:
Can Obama keep his revised promise to close the Guantanamo facility before leaving office? "It's going to be very difficult," Hagel said, "especially if the Congress further restricts where these last 122 detainees go." Congress has already barred them from being sent to the United States.
10:27 PM, Jan 14, 2015 • By DANIEL HALPER
The Department of Defense announced this evening that five more terrorists have been transferred from Guantanamo Bay. This time, four have been transferred to Oman and one to Estonia. Here's the press release announcing the release to Oman:
Detainee Transfer Announced
The Department of Defense announced today the transfer of Al Khadr Abdallah Muhammad Al Yafi, Fadel Hussein Saleh Hentif, Abd Al-Rahman Abdullah Au Shabati, and Mohammed Ahmed Salam from the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay to Oman.
Dec 29, 2014, Vol. 20, No. 16 • By STEPHEN F. HAYES
We don’t expect much. It’s been nearly six years. We’re long past the point of hoping that Barack Obama will adopt policies that deserve our grudging approval, if not enthusiastic endorsement, particularly on foreign policy and national security.
But we do expect something.
They weren’t kidnapped. They’re not refugees.Dec 29, 2014, Vol. 20, No. 16 • By THOMAS JOSCELYN
On Sunday, December 7, a U.S. military medical aircraft landed in South America, to deliver six jihadists from the detention facility at Guantánamo Bay to Uruguay. For more than a dozen years, these six men had been held as dangerous enemies of the United States. Suddenly, Uruguay treated them as refugees, even victims, and the Obama administration didn’t object.
Jihadist Moazzam Begg, the Gitmo snitch
8:01 AM, Dec 17, 2014 • By THOMAS JOSCELYN
Ex-Guantanamo detainee Moazzam Begg is back in the news this week. On Sunday, CNN’s Fareed Zakaria interviewed Begg to get his perspective on the recently released report, written by Democrats on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, concerning the CIA’s controversial interrogation program. Zakaria teased Begg’s segment at the beginning of his show, saying, “Moazzam Begg wants an apology. He was held in U.S. prisons and says he was abused and witnessed torture. What is his response to the report?
3:41 PM, Oct 10, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
House Speaker John Boehner has issued this statement in response to a press report indicating that the Obama administration might bring the Gitmo terrorists to America:
2:21 PM, Jun 16, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
The War on Terror may be over but the warriors seem to be keeping busy. Which could mean that those already in captivity should be kept there and that space should be available as more are captured.
4:53 PM, Jun 9, 2014 • By STEPHEN F. HAYES
Did the detainees in Guantanamo Bay know about the transfer of five senior Taliban commanders before members of Congress?
5:35 PM, Jun 7, 2014 • By THOMAS JOSCELYN
There is a concerted push to sanitize the records of four of the five Taliban leaders transferred from Guantanamo to Qatar. But before delving into some of the specifics, let us recount the basic facts.
Jun 16, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 38 • By THOMAS JOSCELYN
President Barack Obama and his advisers have long sought to release the five most dangerous Taliban commanders held in U.S. custody at Guantánamo. Bipartisan opposition scuttled a possible deal in 2012 because of a consensus that the “Taliban Five,” as they’ve come to be known, posed too great a threat. Even Senate Democrats were unwilling to go along with the administration’s plans then. But last week the president had the Taliban Five transferred to Qatar.
Jun 16, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 38 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
“Regardless of the circumstances, whatever those circumstances may turn out to be, we still get an American soldier back if he’s held in captivity. Period. Full stop. We don’t condition that. That’s what every mom and dad who sees a son or daughter sent over into [a] war theater should expect not just from their commander in chief but the United States of America. . . . The United States has always had a pretty sacred rule.
11:08 AM, Jun 3, 2014 • By JERYL BIER
At the White House press briefing Monday, Jay Carney was not asked directly about his statement from June 2013 that "we would not make any decisions about transfer of any detainees without consulting with Congress and without doing so in accordance w