Sunday, June 24, 2007

So THAT's why they want to close Guantanamo

Alright, we've heard a shopping list of reasons why we're fighting in Afghanistan. (I use "we're" cautiously and in a sense that the nation has been committed to that action. The actual fighting is falling to a relative handful of people.)

We've heard how we're there to make the lives of the people better, even though we lob artillery rounds into their villages. We're there to improve the lives of the women, even though the suicide rate and acts of self-immolation among Afghan women has increased in the past two years. We're there to secure a democracy, even though the government of Hamid Karzai about as corrupt as any failed state anywhere on the planet.

We've heard that the war in Afghanistan and the war in Iraq are not linked, to which every thinking individual simply utters, "Bullshit." We've heard that we are not aiding and abetting the actions of the Bush administration because the Afghanistan mission is NATO led and UN sanctioned, to which anyone with a feel for the deployment of troops would respond with laughter.

We've also heard that the US wants to close down Guantanamo Camp Delta and, because of the way the Bush administration has handled... anything, we take a "believe it when we see it" posture.

Here's one of the reasons why.
The United States is helping build a prison in Afghanistan to take some prisoners now at Guantanamo Bay, but the White House said Friday that it's not meant as an alternative to the detainee facility in Cuba.
I wouldn't recommend eating that. Most of what comes out of the White House spin machine, as we are all aware, is utter horse shit.
The Bush administration has said it wants to close Guantanamo Bay and move terror suspects to prisons elsewhere. Senior officials have told The Associated Press a consensus is building among the president's top advisers on how to do it.
In other words, they have no plan or, if they have a plan they're not telling.
The administration is looking to resolve the issue swiftly, White House deputy press secretary Dana Perino told reporters Friday, although she said there's no deadline set.
Because deadlines are a terrible thing to waste. They create pressure... you know, to get things done.
At the White House, Perino said Mr. Bush has directed Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to work with her counterparts around the world to try to repatriate detainees to their home countries, make sure they are held safely and treated humanely and that they are not allowed to perpetrate acts of terrorism.
So... send them to Afghanistan. Where torture and maltreatment are virtually unheard of.
A proposal gaining traction among Mr. Bush's top national security advisers would have some of the most dangerous suspects at Guantanamo transferred to one or more Defense Department facilities, including the maximum-security military prison at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., officials say.
That makes sense. Then there's the rest of it: charges, trials, legal counsel. You know, the stuff one would expect out of a country which makes loud noises about the rule of law being deficient when referring to other countries.
The move is opposed by Cheney's office and the Justice Department, which argue that transferring prisoners to U.S. soil would give them undeserved rights and pose a threat to the United States.
Why does that not surprise me? And that disclosure alone is reason enough to state that everything the White House press secretary said is an outright lie.

So, despite the multitude of other reasons we are fighting in Afghanistan, one that we can now add to the list is to secure a place of permanent detention for the Bush administration's unwanted enemy combatants and to avoid having to actually go through something so messy as due process.

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