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Obama v. Uighurs

11:49 PM, May 29, 2009 • By MICHAEL GOLDFARB
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It turns out the Obama administration isn't quite as keen as its supporters to let al Qaeda-trained Uighurs settle in the United States. NRO's Andy McCarthy reports on the latest developments:

The Obama Justice Department told the Supreme Court this evening that the Uighurs have no right to be released into the United States.

The Uighurs, Chinese Muslim detainees held at Guantanamo Bay, received terrorist training at al Qaeda affiliated camps (from an organization formally designated as a foreign terrorist organization under U.S. law) and were captured after the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan. They are the Left's combatant cause célèbre. The military took the incoherent position that they were trained al Qaeda terrorists but that their real beef was with China, not us. Thus, the federal courts have held that they are not enemy combatants. The government has been trying to relocate them for years but no country will take the remaining 17 - other than China, where our treaty obligations arguably forbid us from sending them because there is reason to believe they'd be persecuted.

Of course, it's one thing to say that they are not enemy combatants and should therefore be released. It is quite another thing, though, to say that they should be released into the United States (which, because of their terrorist affiliations, would violate federal immigration law).

Read the whole thing, but note that this has the potential to put a major kink in the Obama administration's Gitmo diplomacy. European nations are clamoring for the U.S. to accept some of the Uighur detainees in return for accepting some themselves. Now, the Obama administration has conceded that the Uighurs have no right to be released in the United States.