The Devil is in the Details

Most of the discussions on the Sunday morning talk shows were about the Closing of Guantanamo Bay Prison complex in Cuba and with President Obama’s initial deadline for it’s closure January 22 rapidly approaching I thought I would try to do some reading on the subject. What I found out was that the more I read about the issue the more I came to realize just how complex and sticky an issue this is.

Being just an ordinary citizen and by no means a legal expert I have had a hard time understanding what the hold up was and how being a nation based on our values could possibly justify holding prisoners indefinitely without giving them “their day in court”. This article gives some excerpts from rulings over the past few years regarding Guantanamo detainees. Sometimes the evidence used to hold the prisoner was considered multiple levels of heresay and sometimes the evidence was gathered from the prisoner while they were being tortured. I have to admit I was surprised how thin the government’s case was for many ! 

If the evidence is not sufficient enough to hold a detainee then the question that often arises is what do we do with enemies of America that have committed no crimes against us, but because of their views are just too dangerous to let go. I’ve always been of the opinion that we should just send them back home, but if the detainee’s home country is known to torture, like Yemen where 45% of the detainees come from, we can’t do that because of our support of the U. N. convention and article three prohibits torture and other cruel or degrading treatment.

So it looks like many detainees will finally get their day in court complying with a Supreme Court decision last year and I will anxiously be watching and reading about each and every one of their upcoming trials.

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