Tuesday, February 16, 2010

To Gitmo Or Not To Gitmo? That's the Question


According to the NRO's Andrew McCarthy, President Obama is floating a lil' deal with Republicans in Congress on enemy combatants: 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammed would be tried by a military tribunal instead of in civilian court as Prez Zero wanted, but in exchange the Republicans agree to close Club Gitmo and bring the combatants to stateside federal prisons.

McCarthy, with his typical common sense regards this as a supremely stupid move:

This would be a terrible sell-out of our national security. It would also be unnecessary. The American people strongly support military commissions for enemy combatants — not for all terrorism cases, but for all unlawful alien enemy operatives who have no right to be tried in our civilian courts and for whom Congress has authorized military commissions.

The American people also support holding enemy combatants at Guantanamo Bay, a secure, off-shore military facility. U.S. taxpayers have already plunked down over $200 million to turn Gitmo into a state-of-the-art, Geneva Convention–compliant facility that even Obama administration officials concede is first-rate. There is no reason on earth to create a security problem inside our country when we have gone to Herculean lengths to create a perfect location outside our country.

The Left’s counter to this is the claim that Gitmo fuels terrorist recruitment. That is absurd, and, as I’ve said before, confuses a pretext with a cause. People in the Islamic world could not care less whether we are detaining Muslim terrorists based on civilian protocols or under the laws of war: They don’t know the difference. The Blind Sheikh’s disciples mass-murdered people in an attempt to extort his release despite the fact that he is in a nice civilian jail after having had his nice civilian trial. What offends many in the umma is that we are holding Muslim terrorists, period. They don’t care where.

Blogpal Mike Merrit over at Poligazette thinks that McCarthy makes a better argument in favor of moving the detainees stateside than he does for keeping them in Club Gitmo:

Despite the fact that most of our detainees remain in Guantanamo Bay, a Yemeni national tried to blow a plane out of the sky on Christmas Day. Also, despite the fact that several actual enemy combatants are in civilian prisons right now, not one terrorist who has tried to attack us since 9/11 has actually gone near one of those prisons.

True, the underwear bomber was trying to kill people near Denver, Colorado. Let us not forget that both Richard Reid and Zacharias Moussaoi are held in Florence, which is 2 1/2 hours away. So based on the warnings we’ve heard from Republicans, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab ought to have waited until the plane landed and then headed for Florence. But he didn’t. Instead, he tried to set his bomb off while still in the air.

Of the other foiled terror plots since 9/11, most have been planned for New York City or surrounding areas, a couple for D.C., and one for Seattle. All cities. Clearly Al-Qaeda continues to prefer going for the grand effect, and I’m not sure that blowing up a prison would achieve that. While I don’t wish to discount the loss of life of servicemen and women, and other prison staff that would occur, it seems to me that terrorists would still much rather kill civilians and cripple our economic centers. You don’t do that by blowing up a prison or going for the low population community surrounding it. You do that by going where it hurts the most: the cities.

That page lists 19 plots foiled (18 if you don’t count their inclusion of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed). Eighteen, and that was before there was any talk of closing Gitmo. Andrew McCarthy is right: they don’t care where we hold the detainees. Whether Guantanamo Bay, Cuba; Florence, Colorado; or Thomson, Illinois, they’re still going to try and kill us. Add on to the fact that a future Thomson facility is likely to have security above even that of current supermaxes, and I think it highly unlikely that any terrorists with more than a pea for a brain will try to target it, just as they haven’t tried to target the current locations of terrorists in the past nine years.
What Mike unfortunately avoids is the same argument the old Mafia Don used in the movie Casino when he and his cohorts were trying to decide whether to ice an old partner who could link them to further charges and get them put in jail - why take a chance?

Why risk a terrorist mission to free them taking place on American soil, or their imams or lawyers passing messages to al-Qaida , the Muslim Brotherhood or other Islamist groups? If you think that's a bit far-fetched, you might remember the case of Lynn Stewart, Sheik Omar Abdul Rahman's treasonous lawyer who passed secret messages for the Blind Sheik to his terrorist pals.

That's especially true since, as McCarthy notes, the American taxpayers have already spent a large sum making Club Gitmo into an Islamist's tropical paradise ( halal meals, free prayer rugs, and restricted, baby - no Jews allowed!). Why not use it?

The two examples Michael mentions, Richard Reid and Zacharias Moussaoi are held where they are because Reid is a British subject and Moussaoi a French citizen, and the Bush Administration needed to make certain agreements in order to get these countries to agree to waive extradition and allow them to be tried here. That's a little factoid that's conveniently left out whenever these examples are cited.

The fact that these two cockroaches are sitting in a civilian prison is to be regretted, but then so are the Islamo-friendly conditions at Club Gitmo. If I had my way, things would be quite different, I assure you. And a number of these jihadi scum would have already been hung, followed by a pigskin burial..which might just put a little crimp in the recruiting plans of the Great Jihad.

Also, there's the political aspect of all this. Trying KSM in civilian courts and making a big deal out of closing Club Gitmo were Prez Zero's stoo-pid ideas, given out as political red meat to his Angry Left base. Now it's his problem, and the GOP and the remnant of sane Democrats are even stupider if they help him out of the hole he dug.

Andrew McCarthy has it exactly right...no deal.

Hold Obama's feet to the fire for his mistakes and let him make the decision on whether or not to to take the political fall out for admitting he made a lousy decision.

There's no sense in making deals and getting slimed with the same ordure.That's a parfume d'merde that ought to be left strictly for the current occupant of the White House.

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1 comment:

B.Poster said...

My prediction is though the Republicans will help him. After all thats what they do. We must appear bipartsian. We must appear bipartsian.