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Kaa
07-09-2009, 10:33 AM
This is getting to be *really* embarassing...



WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration said Tuesday it could continue to imprison non-U.S. citizens indefinitely even if they have been acquitted of terrorism charges by a U.S. military commission.

Jeh Johnson, the Defense Department's chief lawyer, told the Senate Armed Services Committee that releasing a detainee who has been tried and found not guilty was a policy decision that officials would make based on their estimate of whether the prisoner posed a future threat.

Like the Bush administration, the Obama administration argues that the legal basis for indefinite detention of aliens it considers dangerous is separate from war-crimes prosecutions. Officials say that the laws of war allow indefinite detention to prevent aliens from committing warlike acts in future, while prosecution by military commission aims to punish them for war crimes committed in the past.
Meet the new boss, same as the old boss...

Kaa

TomF
07-09-2009, 12:06 PM
This is getting to be *really* embarassing...

Meet the new boss, same as the old boss...

KaaI'm absolutely livid. An utter and complete bull**** position. Release them, and if you think they're a danger, tail the bastards 'till you catch them on the battlefield. Subverting the rule of law is inexcusable.

oznabrag
07-09-2009, 12:22 PM
I'm absolutely livid. An utter and complete bull**** position. Release them, and if you think they're a danger, tail the bastards 'till you catch them on the battlefield. Subverting the rule of law is inexcusable.

Indeed.

Must we all continue to fear for the loss of our freedom and liberties at the whim of some government official who 'decides' we're a threat?

No trial, no lawyer, no hope of being freed EVEN IF FOUND INNOCENT?

WTMRFHITA??!!!

Didn't we hang Saddam for less?

Bruce Hooke
07-09-2009, 01:26 PM
I'm not happy with this either, but I will say that Bush left Obama with a really sticky problem. As I understand it, many of these detainees will not be accepted back by their home country (or anyone else) or their home country has said that they will treat them as terrorists (China and the Uighurs), so we have the choice of letting them go in the US or detaining them.

If they have been deemed to be not guilty I think they should be allowed to reside in the US if no other reasonable choice is available, but my understanding is that Congress has done its best to block that option and I would not be surprised if a poll found that the American people were behind Congress.

So, our anger should be directed not just at Obama but also at Bush and at the American people who appear to be unwilling to face the consequences of our bad decisions.

If there are detainess who have been found not guilty and who can reasonably be sent back to their home country without fear that they will be tortured or killed on arrival, and who are none-the-less still being held then of course what I said above does not apply and this is simply Obama making the same !#*$#^ mistake as the previous administration and for that he should be roundly condemned.

JimD
07-09-2009, 01:39 PM
...Didn't we hang Saddam for less?

No. We hung Saddam in order to negotiate new oil contracts with his replacement.

Kaa
07-09-2009, 01:42 PM
...or their home country has said that they will treat them as terrorists (China and the Uighurs)...

ROTFLMAO...

Kaa

ishmael
07-09-2009, 02:57 PM
A damn near insoluble dilemma. Tom F's solution of letting them go and keeping an eye on them would be incredibly man-power intensive. We've undoubtedly created potential terrorists out of people who were completely innocent. I know if I'd been locked up for years without due process I'd be angry, and tempted toward radical solutions.

Trying them before a just court in a timely fashion and letting go those found not guilty would have been the answer, but it's too late for that in most cases.

It's a terrible situation. And I agree, it's largely the fault of the previous administration.

peb
07-09-2009, 03:02 PM
I'm absolutely livid. An utter and complete bull**** position. Release them, and if you think they're a danger, tail the bastards 'till you catch them on the battlefield. Subverting the rule of law is inexcusable.

Most of these guys were caught on the battlefield.

TomF
07-09-2009, 03:06 PM
A damn near insoluble dilemma. Tom F's solution of letting them go and keeping an eye on them would be incredibly man-power intensive...Maybe not. A while back, Obama'd talked about 4 different categories of prisoner at Gitmo - only 1 of the 4 groups would be these ones who were unconvictable, but still somehow unreleasable. The smallest proportion of Gitmo detainees.

So there can't be terribly many, and presumably you're not creating any more of them. And if (as both the previous and current administrations seem to think) these folks are bombs already set ticking ... you'd think it wouldn't be many years before they'd have all made themselves into "legitimate" targets.

TomF
07-09-2009, 03:14 PM
Most of these guys were caught on the battlefield.If so, they were soldiers, eh? Treat them as prisoners of war.

Oh, I forgot. The "battlefield" wasn't really a battlefield ... and they were really, er, combatants but not soldiers. 'Cause they fought for their beliefs, rather than a country (except for the Taliban in Afghanistan, who were the government after all till we kicked them out). So prosecute them as criminals, and let them go if they aren't found guilty.

Nowhere for these guys to go home to? Well there's a conundrum. "You break it- you bought it" is the rule I see posted in many stores. Same applies here, even if goes down poorly with Congress (and the voters).

It goes down poorly with me when I "buy" a smashed item my kid's knocked over at the store too. Makes us both a bit more cautious in the future.

ishmael
07-09-2009, 03:41 PM
"Most of these guys were caught on the battlefield."

There's a great story from the American Civil War. A Union officer is interrogating captured Confederate foot soldiers. He asks one of the men, "What are you fighting for?" The reply to which was, "I'm fighting because you're down here."

Just because you're willing to take up arms against an invading army who's on your home soil doesn't make you a bomb thrower.

peb
07-09-2009, 03:41 PM
If so, they were soldiers, eh? Treat them as prisoners of war.
.

Well, to treat them as prisoners of war, you put them in a prison and detain them until after the war. Seems like that is what we are doing.

ishmael
07-09-2009, 03:51 PM
"Well, to treat them as prisoners of war, you put them in a prison and detain them until after the war."

Therein lies the issue. This conflict isn't like previous wars between nation states, where they eventually end. It is completely open-ended, and will likely still be going on after I die. So what are the rules?

Kaa
07-09-2009, 03:56 PM
Well, to treat them as prisoners of war, you put them in a prison and detain them until after the war. Seems like that is what we are doing.

The words "Geneva Conventions" ring any bell?

Kaa

High C
07-09-2009, 06:01 PM
It would seem that Presidents Obama and Bush know things that we do not.

Kaa
07-09-2009, 07:10 PM
It would seem that Presidents Obama and Bush know things that we do not.

Wow, you suddenly acquired a deference to the federal executive authority? :D Does it include economic matters as well? :D :D

Kaa

High C
07-09-2009, 08:06 PM
Wow, you suddenly acquired a deference to the federal executive authority?

When it comes to national defense, yes. That is, after, the feds primary Constitutional responsibility. The free market can do a lot of things better than the government, defense not among them.

Kaa
07-09-2009, 08:39 PM
When it comes to national defense, yes. That is, after, the feds primary Constitutional responsibility. The free market can do a lot of things better than the government, defense not among them.

That's not the issue of markets vs. government. It's pure deference to authority.

You're willing to accept Obama's position on that matter, justifying it by saying that he knows things you don't. But he also knows things about the economy that you don't -- are you willing to accept his positions there as well?

Just because national defense is the primary responsibility of the federal government doesn't mean that the government necessarily gets it right or should be immune to criticism.

Kaa

High C
07-09-2009, 10:04 PM
....You're willing to accept Obama's position on that matter, justifying it by saying that he knows things you don't.....

There is a remarkable continuity between the Obama and Bush administrations with regard to foreign policy/defense. I find that somewhat confidence inspiring...somewhat. It's not an all or nothing deal, ya know. I can like some of what he does, if not all.

brad9798
07-09-2009, 10:35 PM
Obama has learned a lot since taking office ... one of them is that making blanket statements in a vacuum can make one look contradictary sometimes ...

Undoubtedly he has learned things of which he had not a clue (prior to taking office), so it is expected that some promises will not/cannot be kept.

It was pretty obvious to me, at least, that he wasn't going to go in a open the gates (to Gitmo) ...

BrianW
07-09-2009, 10:38 PM
So one guy started it, true to his word. The other guy won't stop it, despite campaigning on the promise he would.

Which one is worse, is up to the viewer.

Kaa
07-10-2009, 12:13 AM
There is a remarkable continuity between the Obama and Bush administrations with regard to foreign policy/defense.

That's not a foreign policy/defense issue. That's a human rights / rule of law issue. And I find the continuity downright depressing.

It doesn't improve my opinion of Obama, either.

Kaa

Bob (oh, THAT Bob)
07-10-2009, 02:50 AM
I share the anger of those above, and agree that those acquited should be released, unless...they did not commit war crimes but were captured on the battlefield by US or allied soldiers, during the commission of a hostile act (not turned in by a bounty hunter), in which case they are prisoners of war, with all the rights afforded to them under the Geneva Convention.

brad9798
07-10-2009, 07:31 AM
Where are all the over-the-freakin-top-Obama-lovers on this thread ...


hmmmm ...

;)

pefjr
07-10-2009, 08:57 AM
Can I take it that New Brunswick, NJ, Vancouver, Austin, and a couple unnamed places are willing to take these lovable characters, house and PLEASE keep them. Close it Barrack, we have solved the problem.

TomF
07-10-2009, 09:13 AM
Can I take it that New Brunswick, NJ, Vancouver, Austin, and a couple unnamed places are willing to take these lovable characters, house and PLEASE keep them. Close it Barrack, we have solved the problem.You can take it that a person strongly suspected of murder, rape, drug trafficking and child molestation but without the evidence to convict still has rights under the law. Has to be let go.

And will subsequently be watched like a hawk, and picked up when there's evidence to convict.

This is no different. If Canada had held these guys and had to release them, then yeah. New Brunswick would be fine - so long as the guys were tailed by a round-the-clock detail. But we didn't imprison these sods - you did. Your home town.

pefjr
07-10-2009, 11:30 AM
So, you don't want them. Maybe Kaa Kaa will cover the slack.

Scratch New Brunswick, Hussein.

TomF
07-10-2009, 11:32 AM
So, you don't want them. Maybe Kaa Kaa will cover the slack.

Scratch New Brunswick, Hussein.I'll take Canadian citizens you're holding at Gitmo. Why would I take other nationals that you were fool enough to imprison without provable grounds?

Kaa
07-10-2009, 11:33 AM
Maybe Kaa Kaa will cover the slack.

And yet another one who thinks he's being particularly clever...

But I don't understand the problem. Are you claiming you're justified in holding someone in prison just because you can't find anyone to hand him to?

Kaa

pefjr
07-10-2009, 11:47 AM
[quote=TomF;2253239]I'll take Canadian citizens you're holding at Gitmo. Why would I take other nationals that you were fool enough to imprison without provable grounds?[/quote
I'm glad you do not represent Canadians

pefjr
07-10-2009, 11:49 AM
And yet another one who thinks he's being particularly clever...

But I don't understand the problem. Are you claiming you're justified in holding someone in prison just because you can't find anyone to hand him to?

Kaa

Scratch ?? wherever you have down for Kaa Kaa. No help there either.

Kaa
07-10-2009, 11:51 AM
Scratch ?? wherever you have down for Kaa Kaa. No help there either.

Are you looking for help, pefjr? :D Do tell.

Kaa

pefjr
07-10-2009, 12:14 PM
Are you looking for help, pefjr? :D Do tell.

Kaa
What's wrong Kaa? You don't have an answer? Its your thread. Suggest a solution.

Kaa
07-10-2009, 12:29 PM
What's wrong Kaa? You don't have an answer? Its your thread. Suggest a solution.

To which problem exactly would you like a solution?

Kaa

TomF
07-10-2009, 12:33 PM
Most countries have agreed to take back any of their own nationals held at Gitmo; our Supreme Court just ruled that Canada must do the same thing. To the dismay of our **** prime minister.

So whether or not I speak "for Canadians," it's a done deal that we'll take our own citizens back.

What are you going to do with the foreigners you've imprisoned

oznabrag
07-10-2009, 12:39 PM
Maybe we could just leave the gate open, quiet like, and they'd be in Cuba all of a sudden.:cool:

JimD
07-10-2009, 12:44 PM
Maybe we could just leave the gate open, quiet like, and they'd be in Cuba all of a sudden.:cool:

Yeah. Kind of a reverse Mariel. I like it. Wave bye bye to America:

http://fpc.dos.state.fl.us/dalemcdonald/dm1351.jpg

Osborne Russell
07-10-2009, 12:45 PM
Well, to treat them as prisoners of war, you put them in a prison and detain them until after the war. Seems like that is what we are doing.

So far, so good. Just remember that the treatment of POW's is a matter of law, not executive whim.

The GOP argument OTOH is that the war powers supersede all other law, domestic and international. Is that Obama's position?

Kaa
07-10-2009, 12:46 PM
Point A: I don't understand the issue of countries not wanting to take their nationals back. It's their nationals and they don't get a choice. If they become prissy about turning them back at the airport or somesuch, I'm perfectly fine with putting their nationals into a rubber dinghy a couple of hundred feet away from their shore. Your nationals -- your problem.

Point B: Please pay attention to the quote: "was a policy decision that officials would make based on their estimate of whether the prisoner posed a future threat." This has nothing to do with who wants to take the detainees and who doesn't.

Kaa

TomF
07-10-2009, 01:09 PM
Point A: I don't understand the issue of countries not wanting to take their nationals back. It's their nationals and they don't get a choice. If they become prissy about turning them back at the airport or somesuch, I'm perfectly fine with putting their nationals into a rubber dinghy a couple of hundred feet away from their shore. Your nationals -- your problem.

Point B: Please pay attention to the quote: "was a policy decision that officials would make based on their estimate of whether the prisoner posed a future threat." This has nothing to do with who wants to take the detainees and who doesn't.

KaaWe agree - go figure. Our PM doesn't like the notion of accepting our own citizens back though, if someone has correctly or not accused them of being linked to terrorists. He too thinks his particular notion of security trumps the constitution.

In 2 instances recently, our courts have had to beat him up on that account ... and he's finally acquiesced to upholding the constitution of the country he heads.

Bloody twit.

Osborne Russell
07-10-2009, 01:15 PM
I wonder if these problems couldn't be addressed by an International Convention On The Treatment Of Unlawful Combatants, or People Not Easily Fit Into The Existing Definitions of International Law.

Yeah . . . then signatory nations would agree ahead of time and everyone would know what to expect and we wouldn't have to debate it every single time . . . nah. Why bother? At some point the United States would just ignore it.