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Where is the Transparency?

10:48 AM, Aug 19, 2009 • By THOMAS JOSCELYN
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From the Miami Herald:

The Obama administration has filed classified notices with Congress of plans to transfer six Guantánamo detainees to foreign countries under a new congressional reporting rule created to hamper the closure of the controversial prison camps, a source familiar with the process said on Tuesday.

All six so-called risk assessments and notification of transfers were filed Aug. 7, meaning the first transfers under the new notification bureaucracy could occur over the weekend at the earliest.

One of the six Gitmo detainees mentioned in the paragraph above is Mohammed Jawad, who is accused of throwing a grenade at a vehicle carrying two American servicemen and their Afghan translator. All three were wounded in the attack. The administration said it was pursuing the possibility of a criminal prosecution against Jawad, but that is looking increasingly unlikely.

In addition, who are the five other Gitmo detainees the administration is planning to transfer? What standards were used to determine that they were worthy of transfer? What measures will be taken to ensure they do not become a security risk after they leave Gitmo? Is the Obama administration paying countries to take them? If so, how much? What do we know about these detainees' lives, including putative ties to the terror network, prior to their time at Gitmo?

These are just a few of the questions that come to mind. The Bush administration's transfer and release policies were not transparent either, and significant mistakes were made prior to January 2009. And the classified notices are most likely in accordance with Congress's specified notification standards. But, isn't this supposed to be the most transparent administration in history? Isn't it supposed to be better?

Why shouldn't the public be made aware of which detainees are up for transfer?